Through a combination of history and privilege, Brooklyn Heights has ensconced itself in a near complete NIMBY shield. The bulk of the neighborhood, the residential part, became one of the city’s first historic districts in 1965, just six months after the creation of the Landmarks Preservation Commission. And just a few years ago, a stretch of Court Street and the lots around it were added on as part of the Borough Hall Skyscraper Historic District.
But there are still a few blocks – well, parts of blocks, anyway – left over for new construction not subject to approval by Landmarks.
And so we find 172 Montague Street (with photos thanks to YIMBY reader Tectonic), a rental building rising mid-block between Clinton and Court streets, wedged in between a taller postwar rental building and newer condos, inconspicuous for its 19 stories.
Designed by Daniel Goldner Architects, the black brick façade with irregularly spaced windows is interesting enough, but any sleek modern effect it might have had is ruined by the PTAC units below each window – a bizarre and mysterious New York City tradition, whereby even renters paying $9,000 a month for a three-bedroom apartment don’t get proper air conditioning.
The developer, Charles Dayan’s Bonjour Capital, bought the land back in the good old days of 2012, when sites were still cheap enough that rental apartments penciled out on the edge of Brooklyn Heights (hence the unsightly air condition grills). The 65,000-square foot building will have 62 apartments.
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