Brooklyn Bridge Park operates under a mandate to be financially self sustaining. This mandate was memorialized in the Memorandum of Understanding signed by Governor George Pataki and Mayor Michael Bloomberg in 2002 that created Brooklyn Bridge Park. While a small fraction of the required operations and maintenance funds for the park will be collected from concessions located throughout the park, the majority of the funds will come from a limited number of revenue-generating development sites within the project’s footprint. The development program was determined after an in-depth analysis of the potential development types and locations. The analysis focused on finding uses that would (1) generate sufficient revenue to support park operations, (2) minimize the size of the required development footprint, and (3) be compatible with the surrounding park and neighborhood uses. Development locations were chosen to (1) take advantage of the existing urban context by concentrating development on the city side of the site, particularly around the park entrances (2) maintain the protected view corridor from the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, and (3) create vital, active urban junctions at each of the park’s three main entrances.
The approved development program includes the sites and uses outlined below:
One Brooklyn Bridge Park (OBBP) is an existing occupied residential condominium building. Completed in 2008, this building is a converted 1,000,000+ square foot warehouse building located along Furman Street just south of Joralemon Street. The building includes over 400 residential units, approximately 80,000 square feet of ground floor retail, and over 500 parking spaces.
Located at Atlantic Avenue, the main southern entrance to the park, the Pier 6 development site includes two parcels, each roughly 10,000 square feet in area. Two new residential buildings with up to 430 new residential units combined will be located on these parcels. The Pier 6 sites may also include some ground floor retail and up to 72 parking spaces. One of the Pier 6 parcels will have a maximum height of 315 feet, while the other will top out at 155 feet.
Located at the Old Fulton Street entrance to the Park, the Pier 1 development site includes two parcels. The larger parcel to the north is approximately 65,000 square feet with a maximum height of 100 feet. The smaller parcel is approximately 35,000 square feet with a maximum height of 45 feet. The Pier 1 development will include a 200-room hotel, 159 residential units, 16,000 square feet of restaurant space, 2,000 square feet of retail space, a 6,000 square-foot fitness center and 300 parking spaces. The Pier 1 development, a joint venture by Starwood Capital Group and Toll Brothers City Living, is expected to break ground in summer 2013. Click here to view a gallery of the renderings.
Empire Stores is the rehabilitation of the historic 19th century coffee warehouses located along Water Street in the DUMBO section of the park. The structures are a complex of seven contiguous four- and five-story historic warehouses with an approximately 75,000 sq. ft. footprint and containing approximately 327,000 gross sq. ft. The project will enliven this section of the park with new retail and commercial uses in the existing structure.
In September 2012, an RFP (Request for Proposals) was released for the adaptive reuse of the historic Empire Stores Warehouses. BBP is seeking qualified developers for the long-term lease, rehabilitation and operation of commercial and retail development. Proposals are currently under review.
Located at the northern edge of the park just past the Manhattan Bridge, the John Street site is a 10,000 square foot site with a maximum allowable height of 130 feet. The John Street development will include up to 130 residential units, as well as ground floor retail and up to 110 parking spaces.
On December 17, 2012, an RFP (Request for Proposals) was released for the long-term lease, development and operation of the John Street development site. Responses to the RFP are due on March 11, 2013.
All in all, the development program occupies approximately 8 acres of the project site, or less than 10% of the total land area. Currently, the park is generating operation and maintenance funds from One Brooklyn Bridge Park. The remaining development sites will be developed in phases as construction of the park continues and additional operation and maintenance funds are required.