Updated Renderings Showcase River Ring, BIG’s Two-Skyscraper Development in Williamsburg, Brooklyn

River Ring. Rendering by James Corner Field Operations

New renderings have been released for River Ring, Bjarke Ingels Group‘s proposed two-skyscraper development in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Developed by Two Trees Management, the organization behind Domino Park, the undertaking is planned to yield 1,050 homes with 263 affordable housing units as well as a six-acre circular waterfront park designed by James Corner Field Operations. The towers would rise from two vacant rectangular parcels that were once home to a Con Edison electric plant bound by North First Street, North Third Street, and River Street. River Ring is expected to generate about 2,000 construction jobs and more than 500 well-paying permanent jobs upon completion.

The base of each superstructure features curved floor plates that follow the shape of the waterfront and beach, then gradually slope upward to form a conventional stack of rectangular floors before topping out with flat roof parapets at 710 feet and 560 feet respectively.

River Ring. Rendering by James Corner Field Operations

The waterfront park is divided into three acres of public open space and three acres of protected in-river access. The project includes the creation of two new beaches within the altered waterfront and protected by curved breakwaters along the East River. These structural components are key to protecting the complex, and over 500 inland properties, from future storm surges and to reduce flooding and minimize the impact of water among the master plan. The design program also includes a new custom-designed YMCA with youth swimming programs for the local community.

River Ring. Rendering by James Corner Field Operations

River Ring. Rendering by James Corner Field Operations

River Ring. Rendering by James Corner Field Operations

The overall development would dramatically scale up the waterfront skyline of skyscrapers lining the East River from Williamsburg to Greenpoint, reinstate natural habitats and introduce nature trails with overlooks and picnic areas, apply green technology to independently service the project without the use of the city’s sewer, stormwater, and electrical grid, dedicate space for local retailers to do business, and finally open this portion of the waterfront to the public.

River Ring is estimated to be completed around 2030 and must go through a seven-month Uniform Land Use Review Procedure before the end of 2021.

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20 Comments on "Updated Renderings Showcase River Ring, BIG’s Two-Skyscraper Development in Williamsburg, Brooklyn"

  1. David in Bushwick | March 27, 2021 at 8:49 am | Reply

    Wow, this is really nice! It’s great to see some sort of “natural” waterfront being brought back to the City. They will need to deal with the onslaught of garbage washing onto the shore as happens in other naturalized areas like at Brooklyn Bridge Park.

  2. I think this project is phenomenal! The skyscrapers are really nice, but what I really love is the riverfront space. Just these little riverfront parks can make a really big difference. Overall, I think this is a great project.

  3. David : Sent From Heaven. | March 27, 2021 at 9:28 am | Reply

    The waterfront is my favorite place to stand and watch, with tall buildings coming in so even more amazing: Thanks to New York YIMBY.

  4. Love this… By the way, other media outlets included a statement from the developer that this would be completed in 5 years, after they receive approval which would be 2027, not 2030. The sooner the better, this would be a great addition to the East River waterfront.

  5. Lol… these comments are a joke. No one who actually lives here wants this. The infrastructure is completely overburdened as is. There aren’t even street trash cans at all between bedford ave and the river, other than those provided by the northside piers, edge and 184 Kent HOAs immediately around those buildings. As a result, two trees other development (with 2 more massive out of scale building yet to be started) at the old domino site brings a massive amount of garbage into the neighborhood every weekend. When confronted about this in one of their luxury condo HOA ‘public’ engagement meetings, 2 trees’ project lead was completely dismissive, saying “I’m not responsible for what someone does 2 blocks from my building!”… and there it is.. 2 trees is extractive, demanding hundreds of millions of dollars in tax subsidies and delivering only the minimum open space required, which btw, would be required if industrial facilities were built on the site under current zoning. Please visit riveringtruth.com for more facts and less developer greenwashing.

  6. What a relief to see a new project I can admire unreservedly! I love the use of curvature in the towers and the park will truly be an asset to Brooklyn and the city as a whole. I hope this will proceed expeditiously!

  7. Satan’s disciple | March 27, 2021 at 5:15 pm | Reply

    Who knows if it will come to fruition. Too bad most see you will never know how cool Williamsburg was before all the stupid vapid crap ?

  8. Here, we clearly can see the devastations of mankind. The need to protect from future water surges (climate change) AND the impossibility to merrily dive into the water and take a swim, as nature had meant it to be, and all that because, even with purfication plants and a sewage system, we are “capable” of making waters ininhabitable and unusable.
    A long way still to go for mankind on its way to a culture that deserves the name “culture”.!

  9. I love BIG designs but has anyone noticed that his pyramid building Via on West 57th. St. is RUSTING!

  10. More unaffordable housing? And planted statements by developers? Great.

  11. Valerie Carthen | March 28, 2021 at 11:10 am | Reply

    Can I apply

  12. More people to an already overcrowded neighborhood. Once a charming DIVERSE family orientated neighborhood filled with authentic culture turned into a no mask wearing hipster haven spreading COvid19. This Corporate play ground was not developed for the poor and middle class bloodline that have been here for 100’s of years. An asset to the people that are moving in and for developers. Prices go up and chase poor people out. Gee Thanks.

  13. The fact that this article mentions nothing of the substantial community opposition to this project is curious.

    Over the past two years, Sustainable Williamsburg, a community group working to encourage the thoughtful and sustainable development of our neighborhood, has examined the progress on (and proposals for) the North Brooklyn Waterfront. As a community, we were surprised a rezoning would even be considered on this site given the massive strain the neighborhood has seen on its infrastructure and services, as well as the corresponding displacement, from the massive development that has happened in the past 12 years from the 2005 rezoning, especially considering there are ~7500 more units in the pipeline already. A pandemic is not a time to approve 2500 more units, especially when the developer has only finished 1/2 of their 2300 units next door.

    Further, the River St proposal is heavily skewed and full of many representations. The developers have built their website to seem as if they are environmentalists building a “waterfront resiliency plan” and a “park” when in-fact the proposal is for 60&65 story towers which would double the value of their site and is from the developer’s point of view necessary to recoup the bet that the developer made in purchasing the land at a value that assumed a rezoning was a sure thing. Their website is not an honest representation of their intentions at a time when the community needs to heal from COVID and rethink priorities for local communities, not be forced into another thoughtless developer-led rezoning.

    Furthermore, a recent survey revealed nearly 80% of residents “with an opinion on this proposal are against rezoning,” and there has been little to no community engagement in the rezoning discussion despite Two Trees’ recent assertion to the Community Board that they have engaged in “intensive community outreach.” Invite-only zoom sessions with select community members is not appropriate community outreach. As a result, 77.4% are unfamiliar with the proposal, meaning that the community has not been engaged by the developer, which is nearly impossible to do during COVID when it’s not possible to have open/in-person meetings. And despite significant resistance at the few public meetings that did occur prior to the pandemic, there are no significant changes to the proposal that address any of the concerns raised.

    You can find more data and information on sustainablewilliamsburg.com. We have also launched riverringtruth.com to fact check the many erroneous or misleading statements in the Two Trees proposal. Some highlights:

    The developer is pushing this rezoning to happen during a pandemic because key decision-makers include is our current city council member, Stephen Levin, whose term ends this year as well as the outgoing Mayor. All eight candidates running for Levin’s seat are against this project.

    As noted in the halted Gowanus rezoning, it is not possible to adequately engage the community when in-person meetings cannot be held, on top of the fact that it is in the best interest of the community to consider our post-COVID world before approving more density. If the proposal stands on its merits, then it will pass at a time that we can appropriately review it. Our community deserves better.

    The proposed above ground park space does not come close to meeting the city recommended standard of 2.5 acres per thousand people. This park will be more than saturated by the residents of these towers.

    The developer is seeking a 35-year 421-a tax abatement worth hundreds of millions in exchange for affordable units. Worryingly, Two Trees has not released a single affordable unit at their neighboring development, One South First, inaccurately blaming the city for delays. The community has little trust that the developer will deliver affordable units at River Street as promised, and luxury high-rises that saturate public infrastructure should not be receiving tax breaks while the city struggles through budget cuts. Studies show that affordable housing when married with luxury development causes further displacement, ultimately making our neighborhood less affordable. Essentially, we’re subsidizing private developers to build more towers, that strain our infrastructure, raise our rents…all built on a small amount of park space that’s overwhelmed by the population that lives on top of it. It’s a bad deal.

    • Nikolai Fedak | March 28, 2021 at 8:17 pm | Reply

      Maybe instead of spewing vitriol on the internet you should HELP YOUR COMMUNITY BY NOT OPPOSING NEW TAXPAYERS AND HOUSING

      Always the same with NIMBY nincompoops

    • Williamsburg is one of the wealthiest parts of the city. We desperately need more housing, and rich neighborhoods need to do their part.

  14. Kelvin D Hodge | March 29, 2021 at 10:57 am | Reply

    How can I get a piece of investment shares and stocks with this development, and I am requesting information concerning my Inquiries also application for apartments and housing space to rent/own, thank you.

  15. This is insanity, to think this is affordable housing, to WHOM!!!

  16. Love this! And,a beach in Manhattan soon! Deff innovative and outside the box.

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