Brooklyn’s Quest for Office Space
Aptsandlofts’ Chris Havens (right, whom we snapped Tuesday night at an open house he hosted at the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts with museum executive director James Bartlett) is trying to rid BK of its dearth of office, one building at a time. The borough hosts only 300 buildings larger than 50k SF, and he works with developers who want to help those buildings serve a higher purpose as creative office. The most promising corridors, he says, are Sunset Park (home to Jamestown’s reimagining of Industry City), along the L train, and south of the Navy Yard.
Chris is leasing the renovation of the 150k SF 1000 Dean St (above, aka the old Studebaker Service Station) that hosts a 9,000 SF Brooklyn Flea food and beer hall on the ground floor, as well as the planned ground-up 25 Kent Ave in Williamsburg. Tuesday night’s MoCADA event is Chris’ effort to drum up interest in another of his passions. He’s volunteered for the museum for years, and when the board asked him about the available space at 80 Hanson Place in Fort Greene, he said, “Grab it.” MoCADA moved there in ’06, and now the area has taken off as a cultural district. James tells us the museum has raised $6M of the targeted $10M for a relocation. It leases 2,000 SF now and is looking at three other Fort Greene properties from 10k to 15k SF to buy or lease long term.