The Brooklyn Heights Jewish Academy, a Lubavitch dream for decades, is finally becoming a reality. On Tuesday, the Landmarks Preservation Commission gave its blessing to the plan for the school’s structure – located at 81 Atlantic Avenue, between Hicks Street and Henry Street. That’s in the Brooklyn Heights Historic District, the first historic district designated by the city in 1965.
As for the structure itself, it is a two-story affair constructed in the 20th century. At the time of designation, it was a hardware store.
Now, the plan is a school that will serve infants through second graders. Everyone through kindergarten will be on the first floor while the first and second graders will be on the second. A play area will be on the roof.
As for what the LPC approved on Tuesday, there were three major items related to the exterior transformation of the building. They were presented by architect Michael De Luna of Midtown South-based Michael De Luna, Architect, P.C. There is the addition of a marquee, reading “Brooklyn Heights Jewish Academy,” and an associated sun louver, designed to shade parents waiting to pick of their children. Also approved was a fence around the play area, minimally visible.
The commissioners had no questions for the architect, and LPC Chair Meenakshi Srinivasan apparently only spoke up because someone had to say something. She said the proposal “seems very straightforward.”
Brooklyn Community Board 2 recommended approval. Judy Stanton of the Brooklyn Heights Association testified in support of the proposal.
The commissioners, without dissent, approved the proposal.
You can view the full presentation slides below: