Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Admiral's Row supermarket: take 3

From Crains:

The Brooklyn Navy Yard, the huge industrial park on the East River waterfront below Williamsburg, is hoping that three's a charm for a large development site called Admiral's Row on the property's southwest corner.

On Monday, the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp. released a request for proposals to build a big supermarket there, as well as additional retail space that could house shops or restaurants and more office and industrial space.

It is the third time that the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp., the nonprofit that operates the area, solicited developers for the site in as many years after two previous winners for the site, PA Associates and subsequently Blumenfeld Development Group, were dropped.

The nonprofit predicts that the project will require more than $100 million of investment and will generate 500 jobs. The deal will be structured so that the winning developer will lease the site long term.

David Ehrenberg, the president and CEO of the Brooklyn Navy Yard, said the development would provide both the neighborhood and the 300-acre Navy Yard complex with a long-needed go-to place for groceries.

"This area currently qualifies as a food desert," Mr. Ehrenberg said. "We wanted to provide a supermarket for the surrounding community and also give the growing numbers of workers at the Navy Yard a place to eat and get a cup of coffee."

The Admiral's Row development will also allow the Navy Yard to add about 127,000 square feet of office and industrial space. That square footage will largely be on the second floor of a new building that will house the supermarket on its ground floor.

Admiral's Row is named for the stately, but now badly deteriorated houses at the site that once housed the base's top naval brass. Those buildings have decayed to the point where they will have to be razed, Mr. Ehrenberg said. But two structures, one of the houses and also a historic lumber shed are required to be fully refurbished as part of the RFP. Those could be home to shops or restaurants in the new development, he said.

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