Century-old Bedford Union Armory to become mixed use development

Plans were unveiled this morning to turn the century-old  Bedford Union Armory in Crown Heights into a 300-unit apartment complex.

The redevelopment will also include a sport recreational facility, community event space, office space and commercial space.

“The Bedford Union Armory has been a centerpiece of the Crown Heights community for more than a century, and by reactivating it, we are building upon its potential to benefit the entire neighborhood,” said NYCEDC President Maria Torres-Springer.

“At NYCEDC, we strive every day to create strong and equitable communities that provide economic opportunity for New Yorkers, and thanks to the collaborative efforts of the City, our elected officials, local stakeholders and engaged residents, we are responding to the needs and priorities of this vibrant community. Congratulations to everyone that has made this project possible, and I look forward to seeing the Bedford Courts team turn this underutilized building into a dynamic neighborhood cornerstone with recreational space, commercial space and badly needed affordable housing.”

Bedford Courts LLC is a joint venture of Brooklyn-based developers BFC Partners and Slate Property Group.

Bedford Courts will develop the armory on a long-term ground lease from the city into a residential building featuring over 300 units of housing, half of which will be affordable, and a commercial building containing a recreational facility, a community event space, and office space.

Carmelo Anthony and The Carmelo Anthony Foundation will assist with the fit-out of the recreational facility, which could include basketball courts, a swimming pool, and an indoor turf field.

Having lived the first eight years of his life in the Red Hook Houses in Brooklyn, the New York Knicks forward has taken an active interest in bringing recreational and athletic opportunities to the community.

CAMBA, a Brooklyn-based non-profit organization, will operate and provide associated programming for the recreational facility and community event space.

Bedford Union Armory occupies nearly an entire city block, a short walk away from the Franklin Avenue subway station and major cultural institutions.

The Bedford Union Armory project was developed in response to feedback from local elected officials and the community after ane outreach campaign to solicit public input on the redevelopment.

NYCEDC and local elected officials co-hosted group discussions with local community leaders from 23 organizations and conducted two public meetings.

Following the meetings, NYCEDC negotiated with RFP respondents so that projects more closely reflected community input.

At the Bedford Union Armory, Bedford Courts is expected to utilize NYCEDC’s HireNYC program for disadvantaged workers, as well as commit to contracting goals for minority and women-owned business enterprises.

“Activating the Bedford Union Armory has been a labor of love, a truly community-driven process where the residents of Crown Heights have ensured their voices were heard,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams.

“Our vision to enliven and reactivate the Bedford Union Armory for the Crown Heights neighborhood is now a reality,” said Don Capoccia, a partner with Joseph Ferrara and Brandon Baron at BFC Partners.

“This exciting project promotes the resurgence of development in the area with much-needed affordable housing, commercial space and community recreational facilities.  By providing new amenities and services for the community, all of its residents, businesses, cultural and community organizations will benefit for generations to come.”

“Since its conception, Slate Property Group has placed a strong and influential focus on Brooklyn development. To that end, we have always had a particular interest in giving back to the community through innovative projects that offer more space and affordable housing,” added David Schwartz, Co-Founder & Principal of Slate Property Group.

“We have envisioned a concept like the Bedford Union Armory for years as we continue to focus on ways to use our resources to give back. We’re looking forward to working on this specific project because we have an opportunity to create affordable housing while also preserving a space that’s ingrained in and important to the community.”

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