Tuesday, January 19, 2010

360 Smith Street Construction Site Gets Steel Beam Delivery


At First Street, looking down towards 360 Smith Street


Steel delivery to 360 Smith Street construction site

A view of the site from 2nd Place


Cars backed up on Smith Street because of lane closure



Telescopic crane as seen from Second Place

The sky couldn't have been bluer on Monday, which made the huge yellow telescoping crane, which hovered over the 360 Smith Street/ 131 2nd Place construction site, look even more offensive. Slowly, ever so slowly, it hoisted huge steel beams over the blue plywood fence. All I could think of was that in the not too distant future, these steel bars would make up a 7 story building which would obscure the same sky which looked so open and wide at that very moment.

The "Oliver House", as it was once called, has been in the works for quite some time now. When Developer Robert Stein first presented his plans to the community, he was met with opposition. Many in Carroll Gardens felt that his building was too high and looked too modern for this brownstone neighborhood and no one seemed to like his architect, Robert Scarano, who as quite an unsavory reputation.

Stein eventually switched architects and had the plans (slightly) changed.

Construction at the 360 Smith Street/ 131 2nd Place started, but came to an abrupt halt in July 2008, when developer Bill Stein's "Oliver House" was slapped with a Stop Work Order immediately after the City Council passed the Carroll Gardens Wide Street Zoning Text Amendment, which limits permitted building height and density in Carroll Gardens.
Developer Stein promptly took his case in front of the Board of Standards and Appeals, that oh-so-contentious board that grants developers exemptions in cases such as this.

In order to be able to continue, Mr. Stein had to prove that a significant portion of the project's foundation had been completed before the Stop Work Order went into effect. Though inspectors from the NYC Department of Buildings determined that only 20% of the foundation had been completed, the BSA gave Stein what he wanted at a hearing in November 2008. The Stop Work Order was lifted. He was now free to proceed.

By September 2009, construction resumed. There have been some rumors that Bill Stein had sold the property to another developer, but he was just spotted with a large group of people, including his architect, in front of the site. So obviously, he is still involved.

Related Reading:

Did You See This Happen? Man Injured By Falling Construction Fence At 360 Smith Street

2nd Place Subway Station Now History

Last Glance At Old Carroll Gardens Subway Plaza on Second Place

Boom, Boom...Construction Resumes At 360 Smith Street

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Anonymous said...

Seeing that beam as the beginning of that part of the sky being taken from the community is very sad. My godson always said that Brooklyn was land of the big open sky. I always feel so good when I come back to Brooklyn from Manhattan - that I can breathe again. This building is going to tower and loom over that part of Carroll Gardens. Ironically, its residents will be benefitting from open sky around them while taking ours away.

Anonymous said...

Seeing the arrivals of the steel in trucks barely fitting down Smith Street and the arrival of equipment that far out scales anything this corner has ever seen makes me unbearably sad.
There was never a logic or sane reason to build a building this large on this lot. nor was ever a "wide street' to build it on. Shame on the cowardly developer Mr. Stein, Mr. Scarano, and the various lawyers involved, shame on their greed, and shame on the City of New York for ignoring history, precedent and sanity. One of the most beautiful blocks in Carroll Gardens is being ruined forever.

Lisanne said...

Just hope noone gets hurt like the guy that the construction wall fell on..which is minor compared to steel beams..btw- he is recovering slowly...this project has inconvenienced the neighborhood from crowded stairwells and turnstiles to extra steps for people who have disabilites..i hope karma catches up to billy stein.

Anonymous said...

First they came for the ugly, unmaintained parking lots.

Danie said...

I left Manhattan to get away from this. What more o these people want?

Raised in Carroll Gardens said...

Why couldn't they have built a modern Brownstone Style building or 2? They jump right to these eye-sores because it's a way to make MORE profit!!

From the rise on Smith & 1st Place you were always able to see the sky & Narrows Bridge - but you won't for long.
As Anon wrote: They are taking away the view from the many and selling that view to the view.