Brooklyn Boro

One Clinton, 36-story condo building on former library site, nears completion

May 2, 2022 Raanan Geberer
Rendering courtesy of Marvel Architects
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One Clinton, the 36-story residential building at 280 Cadman Plaza West that has risen on the site of the former Brooklyn Heights and Business Branch libraries, is now almost complete, published reports say.

Most of the façade has been finished except for some black metal paneling near the top of the tower, according to New York YIMBY, a development website. 

In addition to the 134 residential units, the building is slated to include a new STEM research center operated by the Department of Education as well as a new public library — which was part of the deal that allowed the original library building to be demolished in 2017.  The site will also have two ground-floor retail spaces, one of them leased by the Brooklyn Roasting Company.

Early reports said that the $470 million, Flatiron-like building, designed by Marvel Architects and developed by Hudson Companies, would be finished by mid-2020. A Brooklyn Eagle article from 2018 said about a third was already completed. Presumably, construction was delayed by the pandemic.

Athena North on Fulton Street in Clinton Hill, one of two affordable buildings that were built as part of the agreement by which Hudson Companies was able to build the 36-story condo building One Clinton. Rendering courtesy of Marvel Architects

Also as part of the agreement by which the building was allowed to proceed, Hudson agreed to 114 units of permanently affordable housing on two privately owned sites in Clinton Hill. An affordable lottery was held for these two buildings, known as Athena North and Athena South, in 2019.

In the new One Clinton building, according to New York YIMBY, amenities include a 24-hour attended lobby, a resident manager, a package room, a sky lounge, a landscaped terrace, a fitness center, a children’s center, a screening room and music rehearsal space, WiFi in the common areas and more.  Sales for One Clinton were officially launched in January 2019.

The old Brooklyn Heights Library, built in 1961, had frequent air conditioning issues, and Brooklyn Public Library execs maintained that fixing the system would be cost-prohibitive. Sale of the library site was approved by the City Council in late 2015. 

The agreement by which One Clinton would be built was OK’d by then-Councilmember Steve Levin and the Brooklyn Heights Association. However, there were several opposition groups in the Heights that fought to keep the original library open. 

Their concerns included the fact that the new library space would be smaller than the old (although the city said that its “functional space” would be increased) and the off-siting of the affordable housing component, according to previous Eagle articles.

Since the library was demolished, services have been provided at a temporary Brooklyn Heights Library branch at Our Lady of Lebanon Church on Remsen Street.

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