Three Important Projects That'll Change Brooklyn Forever
They’re not the only hot spots in the borough, but the Navy Yard, Industry City and City Point are at the forefront of redefining Brooklyn for live/work/play (and shop). That's why we're excited to have Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp CEO David Ehrenberg, Industry City CEO Andrew Kimball and Acadia COO Chris Conlon as speakers at Bisnow’s 4th Annual State of Brooklyn event at the former Williamsburg Savings Bank Building on Thursday, Nov. 4, starting at 7:30am.
The Navy Yard recently turned a corner, David tells us. For the past 20 years, the stabilization and adaptive reuse of old space at the 200-acre complex has been the main focus. Now, he says, there’s significant new space in the pipeline, most notably Boston Properties and Rudin Management’s 675k SF ground-up office building at Dock 72, and a light industrial/retail project developed by Steiner Equities that’ll include NYC’s first Wegman’s as part of 150k SF of new retail. There’s currently about 3.5M SF in use throughout the whole of the Navy Yard—the most since 1966, when the US Navy ceased operations there, according to David. But look out: the pace of the rise in utilized space is projected to pick up. David tells us the number of workers coming in and out of the gates every day roughly doubled in the last decade or so and now stands at 7,000 and is expected to double again in the next five years.
Sunset Park’s Industry City just hit 2M SF in leasing for the first time since a JV of Jamestown, Belvedere Capital and Angelo Gordon took over ownership in 2013. The mammoth 6M SF site now has about 4,000 people coming to work every day (when the redevelopment started, it was around 1,900, Andrew says). There’ve been some marquee leases in the last several months, like Time Inc’s deal to move 300 employees to 55k SF there. Andrew says those deals, along with improvements like new raised sidewalks and public courtyards made possible by a $100M investment by the ownership, are convincing tenants that it’s not just renderings but a real office and industrial district being born. The complex isn't a stand-in for Manhattan-style office district where few of the workers live nearby; Andrew says about 50% of workers employed at Industry City live in the surrounding neighborhoods of Western Brooklyn—many within walking distance.
“Brooklyn is falling into focus for a lot of people from a retail perspective,” Chris says. Bustling strips like Bedford Avenue or Smith Street make sense to retailers who don’t know the borough, Chris says, but they haven’t seen a main, central retail district that’s not confined to one or two streets. That might be because they haven’t seen the 700k SF of retail on six levels that City Point will bring to what Chris calls the “bull's-eye” around the corner of Flatbush Avenue and Fulton Street. The project will total 1.9M SF, and will include residential units across the affordability spectrum and a park about the size of Bryant Park that Acadia’s helping design and build. Chris tells us to look for an opening of the project around the middle of next year. “Get ready,” he says. “There’s going to be a big shift in focus for Brooklyn’s retail scene.” Hear from David, Andrew, Chris and many more Brooklyn players at our event on Thursday, Nov. 4, at the former Williamsburg Savings Bank Building at One Hanson Place, starting at 7:30am. Sign up here!