Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Assemblyman Notes the Great Greenpoint Williamsburg Fire

Greenpoint Wburg Map

The Real Estate ran an item yesterday about Assemblyman Jim Brennan, whose district includes Park Slope and who chairs the Assembly Committee on Cities, and his support of the $300 million "Restoring New York's Communities" state program. The program is supposed to "help restore blighted communities by funding the reconstruction of deteriorated real estate," in The Real Estate's words.

So far, so good. Brennan is quoted as saying, "Think of where the fire was in Williamsburg. The city can use this money to knock it down and prepare the land for development." Now, we don't want to be pedantic or picky, but shouldn't an Assemblyman representing part of Brooklyn know the fire was in Greenpoint? As in, Greenpoint Terminal Market? Or is he talking about a different fire in Williamsburg that we don't know about? (We know the neighborhood borders depend on who is defining them in places, but not near the Greenpoint Terminal Market.)

Assem. Brennan told The Real Estate that priority for grants will go to contaminated "brownfield" sites and said that former industrial sites in Red Hook, Gowanus and Williamsburg could benefit. "The city can do a $20 million project that would knock down some vacant industrial structures, acquire the land, clear the site of toxic contamination, and then have a development project," he said.

Affordable housing, for instance, The Real Estate asked.

"Sure," Brennan said. "Or a commercial development. Or a box store."

We are reduced to silence.

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