[UPDATE] Bye Bye Key Food: Deal Closed, Construction To Begin This Year

[UPDATE] Bye Bye Key Food: Deal Closed, Construction To Begin This Year
Key Food, 5th Avenue
Photo by BKLYNER

[Updated: Monday, April 3 at 9:30am] City Council Member Brad Lander’s office released an announcement on Thursday, March 30 regarding the agreement reached with Avery Hall Investments on the Key Food site located at 120 Fifth Avenue.

The ‘Cooperation Agreement’ between AHI and the Community Stakeholder Group will now ensure that the mixed-use development will have a 22,000-square-foot supermarket — which is a bit smaller than the current Key Food, but larger than most area supermarkets and twice as big as the 7th Avenue Key Food. AHI also agreed to work with the community to find an operator that’s a good fit, and to offer a 20-year lease. There will be a total of 52,000 square feet of ground floor retail across two buildings in the mixed-use development.

It also will include more deeply affordable housing. The buildings will have 165 units with 25% set aside as affordable housing (41 units out of 165). Of those units, 16 will be set aside for very low-income families (earning no more than 40% of area median income, or AMI, about $36,000 for a family of 4), with the remainder at a mix of 60%, 80%, and 100% of AMI.

Other provisions of the Agreement include working with neighbors on traffic safety improvements, offering an opportunity to provide feedback on design, and a process for addressing construction impacts.

The statement also includes:

The project depends upon several regulatory changes being made under a timetable set forth in the agreement: First, a minor modification to the Baltic Street Urban Renewal Plan and amendment to the related Land Disposition Agreement must be approved  by the end of year; Second, the now-expired 421-a legislation (a tax abatement program) must be replaced with a program that is comparable to the legislation previously in effect; Third, an HPD [NYC Housing and Preservation Development] regulatory agreement governing the affordable units must be executed no later than March 31, 2018.

The project kick-off is dependent on all of the above being completed and approved and cannot begin until all of the items have been resolved.

BKLYNER reached out to Avery Fisher Investments late last week for further information.
A representative at Geto & de Milly, Inc., who handles press and community relations for Avery Hall, provided the following information.

“We are aligned with the community in securing these approvals as quickly as is possible,” the spokesperson told BKLYNER.

“Avery Hall Investments intends to start development of the site as soon as is practicable following receipt of all approvals,” he said, adding that AHI will work with the community and all the elected officials involved in expediting the process.

Rendering of new development at 120 5th Avenue by SLCE Architects via YIMBY

The CPC [City Planning Commission] will present the updated Urban Renewal Plan to Brooklyn Community Board 6 for review and comment once the modification has been made. “The Community Board review phase will take place over a period of 30-45 days and will be part of this process and has always been built into our overall timeline for City approval,” the spokesperson said.

“Regarding 421-a, the community stakeholders and Council Member Lander understand and have acknowledged that the project in its current configuration is contingent on passage of a tax abatement program comparable to 421-a. Avery Hall, like most other developers of mixed-income rental properties, eagerly await the return of this vital program,” the AHI spokesperson adds.

A closing date for the existing Key Food has not been yet been scheduled and the proposal process to find a new, affordable, community-oriented supermarket will begin six months after construction has begun on the new development.

BKLYNER will continue to update as information becomes available.


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