329 Clarkson Avenue, Brooklyn, NY

Planning and Remediation for an Affordable Housing Project in Brooklyn

Equity provided environmental services, including due diligence, environmental planning, CEQR, SEQR and additional supporting studies for CAMBA Housing Ventures’ (CHV) Clarkson Estates project site, located at 329 Clarkson Avenue (Block 4828/Lot 21). The site investigation was related to media contaminated with residual Manufactured Gas Plant (MGP) material at the site. The project site was a 54,756-sf lot owned by the Health Science Center at Brooklyn Foundation, and is currently improved with a 45,120-sf building currently in use as a SUNY (State University of New York) Downstate one-story parking garage. The project needed a State Zoning Override to permit development at an R7A equivalent for CAMBA to provide affordable housing and community facility uses as required by the terms of their proposal to NYS Division of Housing and Community Renewal “HCR”.  The project included the construction of an 8-story 298,140 gsf mixed-use development, with 253,478 sf of residential space housing 291 units of permanently affordable and supportive housing, 30,945 sf community facility space including cellar and 14,402 sf (80 spaces) of parking.



The Project Site was subject to a Site Management Plan (SMP) that included two other adjacent Lots under the New York State (NYS) Inactive Hazardous Waste Disposal Site Remedial Program administered by the Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC).  The remedial program was implemented at the site in accordance with OCAS (Order on Consent Index and Administrative Settlement) # A2-0552-0606, Site # 224061, which was executed on March 2007 (NYSDEC, 2007).  The OCAS covers the operation of the Flatbush Station A&B Former Gas Holder Site located in the Flatbush area of Brooklyn, New York. 


National Grid (NG) entered into an OCAS with the NYSDEC to implement a remedial program for the former Flatbush Station A & B Former Gas Holder site in Brooklyn, Kings County.  This OCAS required the Remedial Party, NG, to investigate and remediate media contaminated with residual Manufactured Gas Plant (MGP) material at the site.



The remediation of this historical contamination required significant coordination with NYCDEC and required extensive hazardous materials site investigative work and remediation in order to construct the proposed project. The redevelopment of the Site required conducting a thorough remedial investigation of the site based on the proposed redevelopment plans.  Given that there is residual MGP contamination on the property, appropriate characterization of the soil and soil-gas were necessary for construction safety, offsite disposal of the excavated soil, and for the design of potential mitigation measures for the proposed building. 


The overall administrative aspects of the project were very important because of the heightened level of scrutiny and public involvement.  Doing away with the parking garage in an area where parking resources are already at a premium was a significant issue both for environmental review and community relations. 



The project components including residential land uses required a State zoning override of the existing M1-1 zoning to allow development at an R7A equivalent. The disposition of State-owned property overseen by Empire State Development (ESD), required a State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) process to effectuate the development.  SEQRA includes provisions that permits projects located within New York City to receive an environmental review under the City Environmental Quality Review (CEQR) in conjunction with SEQRA.  NYC funding sources were used – sourced through NYC Housing, Preservation and Development (HPD) Therefore, an CEQR Environmental Assessment Statement (EAS) was also required.


Equity provided project management/coordination, SEQR Full Environmental Assessment Form (FEAF) – completion of the SEQR FEAF to identify the location, size, type and characteristics of the proposed project per the requirements of HCR; CEQR Full Form and Supplemental Technical Analysis including Land Use, Zoning, and Public Policy; Socioeconomic Conditions; Open Space; Community Facilities; Historic and Cultural Resources; Shadows; Urban Design; Hazardous Materials; Transportation; Air Quality, Noise; Public Health; Neighborhood Character; and Construction. In all cases, analysis pursuant to the methodologies of the 2014 CEQR Technical Manual will be performed. We expect that the following technical analyses will be required:

Project Components

  • Contamination related to former MGP Site
  • Site Investigation
  • Environmental Planning
  • State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR)
  • Environmental Quality Review (CEQR)
  • Land Use, Zoning, and Public Policy
  • Socioeconomic Conditions
  • Open Space
  • Community Facilities
  • Historic and Cultural Resources
  • Shadows
  • Urban Design
  • Hazardous Materials
  • Transportation
  • Air Quality
  • Noise
  • Public Health
  • Neighborhood Character
  • Construction Impacts

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