Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Checking In On Lightstone Group's Gowanus Development: First Glimpse Of Public Esplanade

Lightstone Group's Gowanus development as seen from the 3rd Street Bridge
The public waterfront esplanade at 365 Bond Street taking shape
The development at 363 Bond Street and 365 Bond Street as seen from Hoyt Street and First Street
As seen from the Carroll Street Bridge
It has been a while since PMFA has checked in on Lightstone Group's 700-unit mega development along the shores of the Gowanus Canal. Now with Phase One substantially completed at 365 Bond Street and the second phase at 363 Bond Street well on its way, it was time to take some new photos.
Besides, reader and friend C. had alerted me to the fact that the public esplanade along the canal was
taking shape.
Sure enough, from the Third Street Bridge, one can clearly see freshly planted grass, benches and lights along 365 Bond Street, which runs parallel to the canal from First Street to Second Street . The esplanade will continue along the second building to the Carroll Street Bridge once construction is completed.

According to Lightstone, 365 Bond Street will be ready to welcome residents in early 2016. "Highlights of 365 Bond include a 24-hour concierge doorman, indoor valet parking, a world class fitness center with yoga and spin room, a garden courtyard, and a game room with a variety of recreational activities. Other premium amenities include a library, residence lounge, private dining with gourmet chef’s kitchen and a children’s playroom. The building will also feature multiple exterior rooftop terraces with 360 degree panoramic views, cabanas, barbecues and dining areas. Lightstone is also creating a publicly accessible waterfront esplanade park that will include a boat launch and water access point. The waterfront park will include outdoor learning centers highlighting the history of the Gowanus Canal."
The apartments will feature custom Italian kitchens with Quartz countertops and wide plank white oak hardwood floors. Each residence will be equipped with state-of-the-art Bosch appliances, including in-unit washers and dryers, and Kohler and Symmons fixtures."

The waterfront esplanade looks lovely, but it is a small consolation for those, like me, who feel that the development is way out of scale for Gowanus, given the area's environmental challenges. As we all know, the Gowanus Canal is an EPA Superfund site that has yet to be remediated.

A quick glimpse at the surface of the canal this morning confirms that any resident moving into one of Lightstone's rentals will certainly have to deal with some nasty stuff floating by until the clean-up finally happens.

Usual nasty stuff floating on the surface of the Gowanus this morning


Anonymous said...

Yes where are the gas mask stations? And what a nice place to promenade. I hate this place. That's all.
And who's buying it?! I'd rather spend my millions on that gold nugget on Pacific Street. :(

Anonymous said...

Will there be GIANT Glad air freshener a hanging on the light poles and portable chemo hookups?

Anonymous said...

Wow! It looks fantastic.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Well, we'll see, won't we? If you're right, and the banks of the Gowanus are a disgusting place to live, then no one will move in and Lightstone will take a bath. On the other hand, if all the units get rented, then I guess the canal is at least bearable for lots of people. I know what my vote would be, but the crowd will decide...

Anonymous said...

Those 360 degrees panoramic views Lightstone offers are a nice luxury - while they take away ours.

Anonymous said...

I still can't wrap my head around how the ancient infrastructure will be able to handle over 1,000 people descending on Gowanus. Where is all the sewage going? How many more people can squeeze onto the F train? Where are these children going to school? Where is everyone parking? What say to neighboring owners have with regard to these major quality of life issues?
I cannot imagine the folks on 2nd St in particular having hundreds upon hundreds people walking up and down their street on a daily basis Wow.

Building in Brooklyn is a done deal. I think everyone knows that. The 'little people" have no say or control with what is built. Lovely, charming Carroll Gardens is becoming the crowded, obnoxious West Village. At the very least, if the Lightstone development were condos, at least residents would have a vested interest in their homes. This development will also hurt homeowners who rely on the rentals for income. All this will change. Seems the only ones Lighthouse, The Dredgers and Whole Foods will benefit and reap the gold. Sigh.

Anonymous said...

Hey @ anon; you don't own your views! Supreme Court rejected viewshed blocking as a taking.

Anonymous said...

I honestly don't see this place having trouble renting. Not everyone is into apartments with "character" and the neighborhood is desirable. I personally don't find 4th Avenue a great place to live either but that hasn't stopped anyone from filling those new buildings down there either. The silver lining is that walkway along the canal is actually nice.

bored at work said...

We do have some say over what gets built in our neighborhood, given that the current zoning rules do not allow this kind of out of scale development. Remember, our current Mayor and then-Council Member Bill deBlasio supported the spot-zoning to allow this to be built in exchange for the affordable housing components.

One huge gap in the City's planning process is that it doesn't require developers to make improvements to the surrounding infrastructure, unless its done in exchange for changes to zoning. In this case, Lightstone was not required to make those kind of improvements because they weren't part of the negotiations. See the Fortis negotiations around the LICH site. They are offering a new school and other amenities in exchange for increased density.

Finally, I think its important to note that these are rentals. Now while I would not subject my family to living next to an adjacent super fund site and its remediation, people make very different decisions if they are renting or buying. As others have noted, tenants here will be renting so they dont need a return on their investment or have any vested interest in the long time prospects for the neighborhood.

At least we will not be seeing any similar type developments for several years until the city moves forward with a comprehensive redevelopment plan for the Gowanus.

Katia said...

And when that re-zoning gets underway again, we all need to be involved.

Anonymous said...

These developments need to scale back on the parking garages. They only invite people to own and use cars. Buildings like this would be better off spending the money they use to construct a garage on paying for shuttles to get people to the nearest subways. Traffic in the neighborhood is simply going to be horrendous when this opens.

Anonymous said...

No-one is buying. It's all rental so when the first big floods come the residents will flee.

Bklynebeth said...

Sewage has backed up 3 times in our home since Thanksgiving when it rains at high tide and we are a mere four doors away from this behemoth. I cannot imagine how the sewer line on Bond Street will handle rain plus the flushing, showers and laundry of 1000+ more people stacked one on top of the other unless they somehow have their own holding tanks.