There hasn't been much news in a while on the status of the ambitious, mixed-use development planned for the former Domino Sugar refinery on the South Side of Williamsburg. You'll recall that for years now a developer has been planning to build a massive residential and retail development at the site of the landmarked plant, but it was an open question as to how the tanking housing market would affect the plans. Well, turns out the project is entering the public review phase, possibly facing the local community board this month. Here are some new renderings!
The developer's proposal for "The New Domino" remains largely unchanged, despite, as Curbed points out, its plan to use condo sales (remember those?) to finance the construction of the affordable units. If approved by the city's seven-month Uniform Land Use Review Procedure [ULURP], the vacant 11-acre industrial site will be transformed into a $1.5 billion complex, reusing the refinery and, after much debate, installing the iconic 40-foot-tall Domino Sugar sign on top. There would be 2,200 apartments in all, 30% of which would be set aside for low- and moderate-income families, plus a waterfront esplanade.
But obstacles stand in the way! The Observer reports that many in the surrounding community feel the proposed development is too dense, though there is an alternative plan on the backburner that would address that. Christopher Olechowski, chairman of Community Board 1, tells the Times, "They will have to make some really strong arguments about affordable housing versus density and height. It’s not going to be an easy sell."
The Department of City Planning has completed a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS); read it hear at your leisure. Public hearings will be scheduled soon, and (fingers crossed!) another round of edible gingerbread renderings.