You are on page 1of 4

TWO TREES DOMINO COMMUNITY INPUT MEETINGS Summary - December 2012

The following notes and suggestions regarding potential commercial, open space and community uses at the Domino site were compiled from input provided by neighborhood leaders and residents at several community input meetings held in Williamsburg in December 2012. Two Trees is taking all of these suggestions seriously and will be evaluating and prioritizing potential components for the finite amount of space and resources available for such amenities.

COMMERCIAL SPACE

Need mixed use development to allow new creative economy in Williamsburg to grow

o Residential-only development leads to risk of becoming “commuter suburb”

Open floor plates/flexible sizes/minimal finishes are what businesses want

Supply of appropriate space extremely low

Step-up spaces key for allowing growth – i.e., 1,000 sq. ft. to 5,000 or 10,000 sq. feet

Mixture of different size spaces in same building the key

o

Allows small biz to move to larger space in same area when they grow from 4 employees to 50

o

Hard to move your business to space in area when you reach 10-35 employees

o

Larger spaces can cross subsidize smaller spaces

Chelsea Market model – retail draw on bottom, office space up top

Small manufacturing needs similar space – electronics, musical equipment, film industry

While co-working space is great, it’s extremely expensive on a per-square-foot basis once you grow a little

Sense of “community of businesses” important for successful commercial building

o

General assembly space and shared conference rooms

o

Interesting mix of businesses generates networking and cross-pollination of ideas

“Vibe” of neighborhood and space very important – it’s why Gowanus is more attractive to many creative economy businesses than Downtown Brooklyn

o Local amenities important – food, bars, dog parks

500-600K sq. feet in a commercial building should definitely be enough to create “critical mass” for attractive building (as outlined above)

3 rd Ward model is successful, but generates “less flow” because of more expensive classes than model like General Assembly in Manhattan (one-off, $25 classes attract large numbers and creates “flow”)

Improved bus service/shuttle buses will be important

There is demand here for artisan production

o How to coexist with existing neighborhood?

Neighborhood service retail

Office space

o Creative businesses

Need mid-week traffic and commerce to support businesses, not just weekend crowds

o

Larger commercial spaces help?

o

Retail must be supported by commercial traffic and office workers

Food industry important

Paris viaduct an interesting model

o Small artisan workshops

Must create opportunities for local residents

Large commercial hotel

o Will spur commercial traffic to support local workforce

Lack of office space in neighborhood hurts expansion/growth of local businesses looking to grow here

Union Station model

o Good opportunity for small biz

Need to connect to local job training

Incubator ideas

o

Food industry in Brooklyn is “sexy”

! Food biz needs small space – 500-1,000 sq. feet

! Build out costs are big issue in neighborhood

! Shared kitchens

! Showroom/retail opportunities

o

“Step up space” is key!

o

“Hubs” model with variety of spaces

o

Need entity to give support and provide infrastructure – vetting and selection of businesses

o

Photography a micro economy

Commercial use is key – Need for “step up spaces” is significant

Need to respect existing businesses and be part of community – “Can’t be a stand alone village”

Supermarket

o

High quality, diverse, like Trader Joes

o

Affordable shopping options needed

Don’t want: box stores, more CVS, more bars

Locally owned, small, independent businesses are ideal

Street walls need active, appealing facades and connection to street

YMCA and youth activities

o Indoor and outdoor

No need for another elementary school – still under-enrolled now

Transportation infrastructure important for any uses

Arts community can serve as economic draw

o Galleries and studios?

Green manufacturing/light industrial

o 3 rd Ward model good, but more affordability is key

! Commercial affordability for small businesses important

! Grocery store? Needs to be affordable

! Live-work space needed – price point is key

OPEN SPACE

Active uses

o

Ice skating rink

o

Active sports like handball, basketball

o

Running track or trails – options for different types of paths for different uses

2

Waterfront

o

Boat launch is ideal

o

Impacts during construction on Brooklyn waterfront greenway a concern

Support for Grand Ferry Park important

Impacts to consider on open space

o

Flooding

o

Power plant

Storm water management and leadership on flooding important

Community gardens – participatory gardening

Dog park

Outdoor space reflect artistic neighborhood? Outdoor art?

Environmental education opportunities

Easy public access and resources for good maintenance the key!

Differing levels/structures/sightlines for open space

Small outdoor theater/performance space

o Baretto Park in Hunts Point a good model

Study impacts of walls on wind tunnel effect

Active uses

o

Handball

o

Volleyball

o

Basketball

o

Track/exercise

o

Skateboard park

!

Must be high quality, “real” skate park

o

Mini golf/batting cages

o

High quality kids play areas (not just a few swings and jungle gym)

o

Ice skating in winter

Waterfront uses

o

Canoe/kayak launch

o

Floating swimming pool

o

Beach

Passive

o Rain garden

Outdoor activities should be organized and coordinated with indoor community center/activities

Family oriented events/space are key

Waterfront education center

o

Environmental installations

o

Rain garden

Materials – permeable pavement into beach?

Native plants – incorporate history

Farmers market

o Hydroponic farm (rooftop farms in neighborhood)

Marina?

Sloop Clearwater model?

Community garden

Waterfront dining possible? (Inwood model)?

Environmental mitigation

3

COMMUNITY FACILITIES

Schools are needed, but middle/HS specific to creative economy workforce needs – technology, trades, manufacturing, design, etc. (Williamsburg HS for Architecture and Design a great model)

Small theater/conference/event/expo space really needed in Williamsburg

o

100 person meeting room/theater

o

Available for tech expos, community meetings, product launches, etc.

o

Flexible spaces/classrooms

o

“Super shared conference rooms” – large enough for above

Latino arts and culture destination

o

Community theater

o

Classrooms/workshop space around it

o

50 – 60K sq. ft. total

o

Human rights museum

o

Multi-purpose facility with theater as the center

o

Flexible, affordable space - Graduations, Dinners, Concerts

Municipal parking

New school not priority number one

o

Local schools “under-enrolled”, but issues with charters and co-location

o

New high school the bigger need

Instead of new school, invest resources in existing schools in community instead?

Flexible community facilities/spaces are key

Family friendly recreation – YMCA

Environmental resource center

Overall concluding point: Job training and access to jobs important to community

o Access to construction jobs, apprenticeships

Flexible community theater a real need

o

Flexible uses, for community meetings, performances, talks, etc.

o

100-300 people?

Museum space – cultural references to local history

Children’s art and science museum?

Culture and Arts Center that reflects diversity of the neighborhood

Child care

Affordable recreation

o YMCA/Asphalt Green model

Climbing wall

Interim uses would be good

Flea market/farmers market

Overall design should highlight connection to Williamsburg Bridge

Finally, need commitment to hiring during construction

CONTACTS:

Dave Lombino, Two Trees Jamie Van Bramer, Yoswein NY

718-222-2500

212-233-5700

4