Developers and city officials recently joined to celebrate the beginning of occupancy at 1101 and 1089 President Street in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Developed in partnership by Breaking Ground and BFC Partners, the two-building complex once served as the historic Bedford Union Armory and now comprises 415 income-restricted rental units, a parking garage, and the 500,000-square-foot Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center, a sprawling facility with large recreational spaces and offices for medical access and emotional counseling.
Financing for the project was provided by Wells Fargo, the Urban Investment Group within Goldman Sachs, and Citi.
“Meeting the urgent need for affordable housing is no small task,” said Brenda Rosen, president and CEO of Breaking Ground. “We congratulate BFC Partners and the many New York City agencies that brought these apartments to life. As the project continues to welcome families who are exiting homelessness into their beautiful new homes, we are proud to provide social services that help them remain stable in housing for the long term.”
The residential buildings were designed by Marvel Architects and feature a simple gray brick facade with a standard punched window system. Within the building, the residential mix includes 25 homes that are set aside for households experiencing homelessness and affordable units earmarked for households earning 30 percent to 60 percent of area median income (AMI). Qualifying incomes range from $23,178 to $72,060 for a family of three.
All of the apartments come equipped with stainless steel fixtures, energy-efficient appliances, and in-unit washers and dryers. Select apartments have private balconies.
Amenities include a furnished rooftop, a coworking space with private conference rooms, an indoor-outdoor fitness center, a resident lounge, bicycle and personal storage, and an outdoor prep kitchen with grilling stations.
Marvel Architects also designed the Major R. Owens Health & Wellness Community Center, which opened in October 2021. Addressed as 1561 Bedford Avenue, the center houses a 25-meter six-lane competitive swimming pool, basketball courts, and flexible field space for a variety of activities, including soccer and community programming. The building also includes 35,000 square feet of office space for nonprofits and community organizations.
Local community groups offering classes and programs include Imagine Swimming, New Heights Youth, Brooklyn Pride, Digital Girl, Ifetayo Cultural Arts Academy, GlobaLl Sports Center, and Betty Carter Auditorium for the Arts.
“The Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center is an incredible new addition to the Crown Heights community, and for the more than 400 households who get to live alongside these resources and amenities, what a great place to call home,” said Chief Housing Officer Jessica Katz. “Today we are delivering on the promise in Mayor Adams’ Housing Our Neighbors Blueprint to deliver affordable housing across the five boroughs.”