Revealed: 1290 Decatur Street, Bushwick

1290 decatur street bushwick1290-1300 Decatur Street, rendering by S3 Architecture

The eastern edge of Bushwick, where the L train swings above ground next to cemeteries, serves as the borderlands of gentrified Brooklyn, just before Broadway Junction and East New York. But that hasn’t stopped condo developers from flocking there, looking to take advantage of relatively cheap property. And today YIMBY has the first look at a four-story condo project under construction at 1290-1300 Decatur Street, between Knickerbocker and Wilson Avenues.

Plans filed in November call for four eight-unit buildings, for a total of 32 apartments. They’ll be spread across 21,084 square feet of residential space, which works out to an average unit of just 680 square feet. The condos will be one- and two-bedrooms, and the top two floors will have duplexes with private terraces.

The facade will feature gray brick, wood wall panels and balconies, and steel and glass windows and doors, according to the architect’s website. The design, by S3 Architecture, is neutral but still an improvement on the neighborhood’s typical Fedders construction. The developer is Rimon Gabbay, who picked up the two properties at 1290 and 1300 Decatur Street for $495,000 in 2013.

The apartments were probably split between four different buildings to avoid the city’s parking requirements. Otherwise, the developer would have to build 16 parking spots for 32 apartments — a function of the city’s outdated and environmentally-unfriendly zoning code.

The lack of ground floor retail is also disappointing, particularly because the neighborhood is starved for amenities and shops. In this case, zoning, not the developer, is to blame.

A few pieces of Wilson and Evergreen Avenues are zoned for commercial use, but this part of Bushwick still needs more retail between Broadway and Wyckoff Avenues. Several blocks of prime real estate next to the cemetery that might be good candidates for commercial space only allow manufacturing usage, slowing any potential redevelopment.

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