Eliot Spitzer's Williamsburg Waterfront Reveal

This week, former governor Eliot Spitzer announced plans to move forward with his large-scale project for South Williamsburg, three 24-story towers at 420-430 Kent Avenue on the East River waterfront. Kent Avenue has gained notoriety for into its Gold Coast for all the ultra-modern, futuristic development that’s been taking shape on the rezoned land; and Mr. Spitzer’s project will further foster this reputation.

The towers, designed by ODA Architecture, will resemble a “molded iceberg,” as ODA’s Eran Chen describes the stacked boxes constructed to maximize outdoor space and views.

The towers will be marketed by aptsandlofts, and the company stated that the project will be “authentic Brooklyn, not an extension of Manhattan."

Spitzer’s plans call for 856 rental units with 20 percent allotted for affordable housing. The project will include two rooftop pools, a waterfront esplanade, and a public park. South Williamsburg is being inundated with new construction and development.

Other Williamsburg developers feel the $1.5 billion Domino development just north of the site will provide some serious competition to 420-430 Kent Avenue. They also believe Mr. Spitzer will need to procure the area’s highest rents to justify the price he paid for the land.

That said, Mr. Spitzer is confident that the area can easily take on the new residences. In an article in the Times, Spitzer said, “Can Williamsburg absorb 4,000 units? I don’t think there’s any question the answer is yes.”

Mr. Spitzer’s decision to use 20 percent of the units for working-class affordable housing spurred the rapidity of the project’s progression. With Mayor de Blasio pushing for 421-a projects that require up to 30 percent affordable housing, Mr. Spitzer wanted 420-430 Kent Avenue well underway before the current, lesser regulations expire or change.  And indeed, building permits were approved just last week, so construction is on the horizon.