OCTOBER 27, 2010
Reported by Genevieve Lee, ULI New York Young Leaders Group
On October 27th, a group of Young Leaders toured the Domino Sugar Factory site along Kent Avenue in Brooklyn, NY. The site, previously unused for the past century, has been approved for conversion into a mixed-use development of affordable housing; commercial, retail and public space; and neighborhood facilities along the waterfront. The total area spans five blocks and 11.2 acres, and will include the preservation of the landmarked centerpiece building of the factory.
Eric Mandel, Analyst, and Paula Roy, Project Manager, discussed the plans for development on behalf of CPC Resources, the project’s developer. Slated to commence in fall of 2011, the building process will take place over the next ten years. Most of the occupied space will be residential, totaling 2.4m square feet, of which 660 units (30% of the total apartments) will be for affordable housing. These units will be targeted towards households with incomes ranging from $14,662 to $115,814. Amenities in these units are planned to mimic the quality of existing high-rise condominiums in that area of Brooklyn, such as the nearby Edge building.
Behind the central landmark building, the restored Refinery complex, the group toured the waterfront that was planned to become the central, sloped public area of community gathering, and witnessed the amazing views of Manhattan across the river. The public space will include parks, a quarter-mile esplanade, playgrounds and other recreational areas. The Refinery complex itself is the only building that will not be used for residential units, and instead will house community facilities. Much of the equipment of the refinery is planned for integration into the design of the new interiors, such as the reuse of the large metal syrup tanks. The existing exterior façade of the brick will be retained while the interior will be completely gut-renovated.
CPC Resources is the managing partner of Refinery LLC (the site’s owner) and is the for-profit development subsidiary of the Community Preservation Corporation. It was formed to encourage investment in the outside boroughs of Manhattan and in New Jersey, and to finance affordable housing. CPC has financed approximately $6 billion for 140,000 units of housing since its establishment in 1974 and is one of the largest developers of affordable housing in the nation.