There’s still very little known about the future of the block adjacent to Albee Square, where Dekalb Ave curves to meet Fulton Street and becomes Bond Street. But progress is being made, in the form of demolition. Pretty much everything east of Duane Reade has been razed.
Businesses in buildings that previously occupied that space have been closing over the past several years, pre-dating the pandemic. Behind the scenes, RedSky Capital was purchasing lots (apparently 14 total) for some undisclosed project. Its website only lists a Fulton Mall project as “coming soon,” overlay on top of a fairly generic picture of a high rise).
It’s a great location, right next to the beautiful Dime Savings Bank that’s becoming part of the lobby to 9 Dekalb. There’s a rumor, too, that there could be some public retail in the old bank lobby as well.
But the real question that I have right now is if the market can support another residential (or even commercial) high rise project like this. I’m still waiting for the other shoe to drop in terms of real estate pandemic fallout. Will the residential rental market remain soft? For how long? How many businesses will stick around? What will commercial rents be like? Will fewer people move to Brooklyn? Will more people?
On top of all these unknowns, RedSky Capital was having their own issues even prior to the pandemic. According to Brownstoner:
RedSky, which owns property all over the borough and wooed Apple to Brooklyn, appears to have fallen on hard times before the pandemic. They handed back to a lender in lieu of foreclosure part of their portfolio in Williamsburg, a combined 14 properties near North 6th Street and Bedford Avenue, valued at $145 million.
With all that said, the world continues to march forward, and progress is made even when it’s in the form of demolition. If they’re optimistic enough to move forward with whatever plans they have here, then I’ll be optimistic with them.
I do, however, sort of like all the free space we have there now. I supposed I’ll have to enjoy it while it lasts.