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Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park graphic: what's built/what's coming + FAQ (pinned post)

In Amazon bid, Site 5 was proposed as single, 28-story office building with significant lot coverage

Site 5, the parcel catercorner to the arena--bounded by Flatbush, Atlantic, and Fourth avenues and Pacific Street--that's currently home to P.C. Richard and Modell's, has had multiple potential futures.

It was proposed in 2016 as a two-tower project with Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park stretching perhaps 785 feet, with additional bulk to be transferred from the unbuilt "Miss Brooklyn" (aka B1) tower at what's now the arena plaza, but that doesn't seal its fate. (For now, the plan has been delayed by litigation.)

Consider: a shorter single building, with more lot coverage and thus similar bulk, was proposed for Site 5 as part of New York State's bid to win the Amazon HQ2 competition.

(Later, Amazon split the decision and last year picked Long Island City as one of two sites, but ultimately backed off in the wake of pushback.)

As the screenshot at left shows, the Amazon office building at Site 5 was proposed at 28 floors, likely under 350-400 feet, but with relatively modest setbacks. It too would cover 1.14 million GSF, or gross square feet.

For office space, large floor plates are often preferable to accommodate more workers, while a tower devoted to residential or hotel space might be taller and narrower to enable better views.

Bottom line: the plan could continue to change, depending on whether an anchor office tenant emerges or if the site is preferred for housing.

The screenshot above, and the document at bottom, were acquired via a Freedom of Information Law request to the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

Previous plan

Note: the Atlantic Yards plan approved in December 2006 allowed a 250-foot building with nearly 440,000 square feet of space, thus with more setbacks.

The image at right, a July 2006 rendering by Gehry Partners, shows a larger building at near right, at the time proposed at 350 feet and with some 572,000 zoning square feet. Two months later, the City Planning Commission recommended cuts to 250 feet and 392,000 zoning square feet. The latter cut was accepted, and the former was modified.

Still, it's challenging to recognize that the building above right would be essentially half the bulk of the Amazon-proposed building above left.

In the left and center panels of the screenshot below, from 2016, that initially approved tower seemed to appear as more of a wedge approaching Flatbush Avenue, with perhaps more of a setback at Fourth Avenue.

Note that the initial wedge building would be less than 40% of the bulk of either the two-tower project or the single bulky building proposed for Amazon.
Greenland Forest City Partners presentation Jan. 2016 shows shift of bulk from B1 site to Site 5 project.
Note that the "green" space is neither green nor empty of structures.




One of four sites 

In the Amazon bid, Site 5 was described as one of "four proximately-located sites led by Forest City Realty Trust at the central intersection of Flatbush and Atlantic Avenues."

That's a bit of a euphemism. As I reported last December, Site 5--DT13 in the graphic--was one of only two sites controlled by Forest City and part of a cluster of four or five sites. (At the time, I erroneously suggested Site 5 would be likely be two towers.)

The other sites were the B4 site (DT10) at the northeast flank of the Barclays Center, now under construction as the 18 Sixth Avenue residential tower; the extant Bank of New York Tower (DT11) over the Atlantic Terminal mall; and two buildable parcels (DT9 and DT 14) over the Atlantic Center mall.

As I wrote, the chart associated with the bid was a little confusing, describing DT 9 as offering 990,000 square feet and DT 14 offering 1.84 million square feet.

The latter, I suspect, means two towers. After all, when Forest City was floating plans for what was called the Atlantic Center overbuild, designed by original architect Frank Gehry, there were to be three towers over the mall.


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