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Controversial Developer Backs Out of Bedford-Union Armory Project

 The Bedford-Union Armory is located on Bedford Avenue and President Street in Crown Heights.
The Bedford-Union Armory is located on Bedford Avenue and President Street in Crown Heights.
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DNAinfo/Rachel Holliday Smith

CROWN HEIGHTS — Slate Property Group is no longer part of a controversial redevelopment plan for the Bedford-Union Armory, according to a notice sent to the city last week.

The development group, which had been working with BFC Partners to repurpose the city-owned former military building on Bedford Avenue, has sold its shares of the project to BFC as of Aug. 19, according to a letter to the city from Slate’s principal, David Schwartz.

“We wish BFC and The City of New York success with the project,” he wrote.

The move follows a public denouncement of Slate by a group of local housing advocates who condemned the real estate group for its involvement with the contentious sale of the Rivington House, a Lower East Side nursing home turned into market-rate condominiums

Previously, Mayor Bill de Blasio had said Slate’s involvement with the project was “inappropriate” and that City Hall would “take a very hard look” at the group’s contract at the Crown Heights armory.

In recent weeks, the mayor’s office pushed Slate to leave the project, sources at City Hall told DNAinfo New York.

“We believe this is the right decision. It protects the vital affordable housing coming to this site, and serves the needs of this community,” said Austin Finan, a mayoral spokesman.

BFC is currently slated to continue with the armory’s redevelopment following Slate’s departure, those with knowledge of the deal said.