City Council passes plan for more housing in Gowanus, Brooklyn


The City Council approved the redevelopment of Brooklyn’s Gowanus neighborhood Tuesday, in a plan that will bring 8,500 new apartments to the area including 3,000 for middle-class and lower-income families.

Gowanus sits between two of the borough’s priciest neighborhoods — Park Slope and Cobble Hill.

“We are bringing to the floor for a vote today this rezoning that I really believe represents the way forward to build a more inclusive and sustainable city,” said local Councilman Brad Lander (D-Brooklyn) in the Council Chambers Tuesday.

“This was not a plan brought to the community by a developer or even by City Hall,” added Lander, who is the incoming city comptroller.

“It began by people saying, ‘What do we want for the future of our neighborhood? How can we open this neighborhood up to create more opportunities — so low income and middle class families can live in the neighborhood?’” Lander said.

Street scenes from the Gowanus neighborhood
Gowanus sits between two of Brooklyn’s priciest neighborhoods.
Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis via Getty Images
Brad Lander
Brad Lander said the plan would “build a more inclusive and sustainable city.”

The vote, which passed with only one objection, ends the decade-long fight over the neighborhood’s future, which dates back to Mayor de Blasio’s tenure as the area’s councilman.

De Blasio spoke in support of the plan before Tuesday’s vote saying, “This is the biggest rezoning this administration has done over our eight years.”

“Really, really big deal. This is exactly the kind of thing we came here to do,” de Blasio said.

Officials say the development will also pay for $200 million in renovations at the neighboring NYCHA developments, the Gowanus Houses and Wyckoff Gardens.

Wyckoff Gardens Housing
Officials say the development will also pay for $200 million in renovations at neighboring NYCHA developments.
Paul Martinka

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