(Williamsburg Independent People)

Second only in size to Atlantic Yards, the Domino Sugar proposal would be one of the largest developments in Brooklyn. WIP represents a group of local residents concerned with the unprecedented height, mass, and requests for "Special Permits" (Variances) over and above the zoning changes. Below is a list of our concerns:

  1. Lack of Information for Final Designs.
    In an effort to understand this development, WIP has created a series of images viewing it from other angles. (See attached images)

  2. Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) Hearing should be Mandatory for proposed Special Permits \ Variances.
    The “special permits” requested are actually variances to proposed rezoning and therefore should be required to go before the Board of Standards and Appeals. If BSA hearings are bypassed, what prevents the CPC from altering / enlarging the massing and site plan, since they would not be legally bound to a specific design? (Is a 57’x 57’ base for a 400’ high tower realistic? See attached plan)

  3. Requested Special Permits (Variances) to Proposed Zoning:

To increase Density:

  1. Permit the floor plates on both waterfront and upland parcel to exceed maximum residential floorplate size.
  2. Increase the FAR for the Waterfront portion from 4.7 to 5.6 and the upland portion from 2.2 to 6.0.

To Increase Height:

  1. Permit portions of buildings to exceed maximum base height of 70’ up to 110’, and
    to exceed the maximum building height of 210’ up to 300’ for two buildings and 400’ for two buildings.
  2. On the upland parcel, permit portions of the building to exceed the maximum base height of 60’ up to a height of 70-100’, and permit the building on the upland parcel to exceed the maximum building height of 110’ to between 120-140’.

To Disregard Setback Regulations:

  1. Permit encroachment in the 15’ initial setback distance above the base height along certain visual corridors.
  2. Permit encroachment in the 30’ initial setback distance along the shore public walkway near S. 5th Street.

To Transfer Rights Across Zoning:

  1. Provisions to allow transfer of up to approximately 190,000sf of floor area development rights
    across Kent Avenue to the upland parcel from the Waterfront Parcel.
  1. Waterfront Zoning is Generous Enough. Variances\Special Permits should not be granted.
    There is no reason why this waterfront site should be denser than any of the other waterfront parcels.
    Bypassing the variance process for the special permits sets a bad precedent for future waterfront development.

  2. Unprecedented Height and Density for Upland Site.
    In a recent decision, another city agency determined that the appropriate height and bulk for the immediate area was 4 stories or 50’.

    140’ buildings and Floor Area Ratio of 6 is not contextual and creates a disturbing precedent.
    Is there any precedent for the transfer of development rights (190,000sf to the upland parcel) from non contiguous lots?

    The upland lot is no different than scores of other upland parcels in Brooklyn and therefore must go to the BSA for a Variance.

    Has the developer discussed the proposed down zoning of the other properties with their owners?

  3. CPC is Claiming Ownership Rights Into the East River.
    Are they planning on building out into the East River?

    Have State and Federal Agencies been been contacted regarding cantilevering buildings over the waterway?

  4. Where Does it State in the EIS that the Developer will Guarantee 30% Affordable Units?
    Since statistics show that each luxury apartment displaces two affordable apartments, the net impact of this project on affordable housing is negative.

    What guarantees the extra affordable housing units promised will be built?

  5. Previous Community Input
    Have any of the community comments requested by the developer been addressed in the EIS?

    Are any other alternative plans / reuse of existing structures being considered in the EIS and if not , why?

View of Proposed Developement from Grand Street.

Aerial View of Proposed Domino Development. FAR = 6. Built Gross Area = 2,860,000 sf.

Aerial View of Proposed Domino Development. FAR = 6. Built Gross Area = 2,860,000 sf.

Domino Development Site Plan. Gross Area = 2,860,000. FAR = 6. Scale 1" = 128'© 2012 | All rights reserved.