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'Very Odd-Shaped' Empty Lot in Crown Heights to Become Residential Building

By Rachel Holliday Smith | July 25, 2014 2:59pm | Updated on July 28, 2014 8:46am
 Construction has begun on a new triangular building located between Washington Avenue and the Franklin Avenue shuttle.
995 Washington Ave.
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CROWN HEIGHTS — Five years ago, a sliver of vacant land squeezed between a busy avenue and noisy train tracks in Crown Heights sold for just under $77,000, according to property records.

This spring, that same triangular, 1,000-square-foot lot on Washington Avenue near Montgomery Street went for more than four times that, when a developer using the name Washington Ave Dev LLC bought the empty lot for almost $330,000, public records show.

Now, construction is underway there on a four-story residential building already on the market for $2.5 million, according to a listing by Bond New York.

“They’re trying to make the most with the square footage,” said Lucas Dallavalle, the Bond broker in charge of the sale of 995 Washington Ave., located between Montgomery Street and Sullivan Place. “It’s a great use of that very odd-shaped lot.”

The building, which will be right across the street from the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, will include two residential duplexes and space on the first floor and basement for a tenant like a doctor or architect, Dallavalle said. Renderings of the property show a two-tone brick building with Juliet balconies and a wedge-shaped base.

Besides having a love for triangular and trapezoidal rooms, future tenants should be aware of the building’s backyard neighbor — the Franklin Avenue shuttle. The S train runs just feet from the lot’s back wall, rolling along every 10 minutes on weekdays, according to its schedule.

“Waterbeds there will get a good wave every time the train passes,” noted a commenter on the local messageboard Brooklynian, where residents first posted about construction on the lot when it was cleared of trees and vegetation shortly after the May sale.

Though plans for the project were approved by the Department of Buildings in October, it’s been in the works since 2012, when the architect, Sandor Weiss, originally sought approval for construction. Weiss is no stranger to ambitious building projects. In January, he filed plans to more than double the height of an Eastern Parkway apartment building with a seven-story addition. That project has not moved forward following protests from residents.

Weiss has been fined and disciplined multiple times by the state and city for professional misconduct related to architectural plans, according to DOB records, according to the Office of the Professions and an investigation by the Daily News. Calls to Weiss' office were not returned.

On Thursday, workers were busy at 995 Washington Ave., carrying building materials into the construction site, where an excavator sat next to a pit filled with exposed rebar.

Though the project is just beginning, Dallavalle said he’s already received offers on the yet-to-be-built property, but he's "waiting for the right person.”