Developer seeks rezoning for McCarren Park apartments

It is possible that the view from McCarren Park will radically change once again.
A developer is applying to rezone 840 Lorimer Street in order to build a ten-story, mixed-use building across the street from the North Brooklyn park. Applicant Shabsi Parnes is requesting a C4-5D zoning for the property, which would allow for retail and office space beyond the building’s ground floor.
The property has been zoned MX-8 since the large Greenpoint-Williamsburg rezoning in 2005.
If approved, the new construction would build a ten-story building with 74 apartments, 30 parking spaces, and office space and retail space. Nineteen of the apartments would be affordable housing with income restrictions and rent regulations in line with the mayor’s Inclusionary Housing program.
However, developers’ affordable housing commitments have recently been facing heavy skepticism regarding the starting price for units in affordable housing lotteries (the affordable units at 1 Boerum Place in Downtown Brooklyn recently sold at a starting price of $2,000 per month).
The proposed building would wrap around the current building on the corner, home to the bar-restaurant Bernie’s. The location was previously home to the iconic Park Luncheonette Diner for over 30 years, which was known for the feathers customers would sometimes find in their food that were blown in from a nearby factory.
If approved, the rezoning would radically change the corner of Lorimer and Driggs Street and would add to a trend of development along the perimeter of McCarren Park.
Bernie’s is located next to the Grand McCarren park, a new six-story rental building that opened in 2019 in a refurbished industrial building. Rentals at the Grand McCarren average $3,972 per month.
The project at 840 Lorimer Street is the latest of many Greenpoint properties eyed by developers. The Meserole Theater on Manhattan Avenue is currently set to be replaced by a five-story apartment building.
A passionate Facebook group called The Meserole Theater Project is fighting to halt the developer.
Additionally, developer Schlomo Karpen is seeking a rezoning at 1 Wythe Avenue to build an eight-story, mixed-used structure on the triangular lot.
Hudson Companies, Inc. is also preparing for the land-use review process for the massive Greenpoint Hospital redevelopment at 288 Jackson Street across the street from Cooper Park.
Elsewhere in Brooklyn, the Gowanus Rezoning is currently entering the land use review process after a prolonged legal battle.
The project would rezone 80 square blocks of the neighborhood to make way for new developments, including a controversial plan to build housing on the highly polluted “Public Place” site along the Gowanus Canal. The project is currently facing significant community push back.

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