Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Community Board 6's Landmark/Land Use Committee To Hold Public Hearing On Whole Foods



Screen shot 2011-05-24 at 10.04.02 PM

This just in from Craig Hammerman, manager of Community Board 6.

"Please be advised that there will be an upcoming Public Hearing and committee review of
an application* by Whole Foods Market to construct and operate a Food Store at 172-220 3rd Street (aka 214 3rd Street) at 6:00pm on Thursday, June 2, 2011 at St. Mary's Star of the Sea, 41 1st Street (between Hoyt/Bond Sts), Brooklyn.
*The project application is available for review at the Brooklyn CB6 district office during regular business hours."

This hearing certainly means that Whole Foods is still moving forward with their Gowanus Store at Third Street/ Third Avenue. The project has seen little action since 2006, when the national organic food purveyor announced that it was planning on opening a store along the polluted canal. It was tentatively supposed to open in 2008.
However, since the 2.15 acre site was contaminated with a plethora of industrial waste from a former coal yard, a petroleum oil company and a freight company, it first needed to be cleaned. The land was remediated under the Brownfield Clean-up program in early 2010. The work was overseen by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.
However, the project was temporarily stopped again when the Environmental Protection Agency declared the Gowanus Canal a Superfund site.

Now it would seem that Whole Foods is finally moving forward again. The Community Board public hearing is the first step in getting the zoning change needed to proceed.
After public input, CB6 will formulate "a recommendation on an application submitted to the Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA Calendar No. 66-11-BZ) for a variance of Section 42-00 of the Zoning Resolution that would permit a Food Store (UG 6) in excess of 10,000 square feet in an M2-1 zoning district."


Jeanette said...

I will never step foot into Whole Foods if it ends up being built, which at this point seems like a foregone conclusion. I understand that people would like more shopping choices and there is a lot of money waiting to be made from both sides of the canal. But the idea of building next to the Gowanus before it has been cleaned up is utterly ridiculous. I don't believe that Whole Foods has adequately cleaned the site and until the canal which is of course right next to it is cleaned up properly this is pure folly. Profit before people and what's up, since Whole Foods plays itself as being a righteous company? Reminds me of the city's spin that the canal wasn't as dirty as some people were saying and time to build baby build. I remember the CGNA meeting when Cas Holloway asked us to "humor" them while they put an alternative plan together. The EPA proved that the city was wrong. The idea of a rooftop vegetable garden that will produce produce for sale fed with toxic air shows a complete misunderstanding of the severity of how poisoned the canal is and a total disdain for public health. Yuck and boooooo!!!

Anonymous said...

Wooooohhoooo!!!! I am so happy this is finally happening! Having lived down the street for the past 10 years(and 500' from the canal) I am so glad to see a company willing to take the time and tremendous cost to clean up this toxic site and make something positive out of it. This will be a great improvement to the neighborhood and helpfully encourage more people to invest in cleaning up the area around the canal. The park and seating area along the canal and the greenhouse roof is a great idea. Bravo!