Friday, November 7, 2014

Staten Island's Decaying Farm Colony Approved for Redevelopment

A 46-acre campus of abandoned buildings on Staten Island is slated to be reborn as a 350-unit senior housing complex with retail stores.  The Landmarks Preservation Commission approved a plan by NFC Associates to redevelop the New York City Farm Colony, which has been sitting empty for more than 40 years. The developer would preserve six of the historic properties on the Sea View campus. Three of the buildings, dating from 1904-1931, would be used for residences, while the others would serve as storage and mixed-use facilities.
Shielded by overgrowth and plagued with decades of decay, a cluster of graffiti-coated historic buildings on the Farm Colony property in Sea View will soon be a haven for Staten Island's growing senior population.

Last week, the Landmarks Preservation Commission unanimously backed a proposal to transform the 46-acre campus that was once a poor farm into 350 units of senior housing plus some retail.

Called Landmark Colony, the project is being developed by NFC Associates (with an investment of $91.7 million) in cooperation with the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

The developers plan to restore the historic 46-acre Mid-Island property from its neglected, eroded state. The Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the area as a historic district in 1985.

Six of the 11 buildings dating from 1904-1931 on the Farm Colony land are slated to be rehabilitated for occupancy, with one for mixed use -- residential and a community center -- and another for storage and utilities.

A sixth building will be stabilized and turned into a greenhouse and garden. The remaining five buildings will be demolished with the approval of the Landmarks Preservation Commission, which will also oversee work on buildings slated to be utilized again.

click to enlarge
Approximately 30 period-inspired carriage houses are set to be built on the grounds.

The plan includes 17,000 square feet of commercial and community facility space, as well as a recreation center, gardens, an outdoor theater, a central green space and accessory parking.

Interconnected trails and paths for walking, bicycles and electric carts, multiple water features, and a community greenhouse and outdoors gardens are also in the works.

The design team from Vengoechea + Boyland Architecture delivered a presentation which contained detailed renderings and drawings and proposed changes.

The most notable changes were to the clubhouse building, which will be significantly redesigned, and the water table, which will be raised to allow more places to use salvaged stone in the construction.

Another change includes the fact that the pillars that mark the entrance to the Potter's Field will remain. A photographer will be hired to better document all of the existing structures as they are today before any construction commences.
click to enlarge

The commissioners were eager to endorse this project. "I'm a fan."

Commissioner Frederick Bland, who first visited the site 29 years ago, referred to the developer as a "rescuer." He called the plan "rich and meaningful" and "breathtaking and positive."

With the 65-and-older population in the borough projected to increase to 103,000 by 2030 -- for what will be a 100 percent increase from 2000 -- the development is critically important.

A 188-bed assisted living facility called The Brielle at Seaview is in the works across from Farm Colony, and another 104-unit complex for senior citizens, Park Lane at Sea View, is located on the campus of nearby Sea View Hospital Rehabilitation Center and Home.

A groundbreaking expected to begin by the end of 2015.

Visit Our Sponsors

Page Views

Since October 1, 2011