BROOKLYN, NY — A psychiatric center in Brooklyn will be redeveloped into a massive affordable housing project as part of a state-led $1.4 billion plan to transform Central Brooklyn, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced.

The governor unveiled renderings over the weekend of the winning design to redevelop Kingsboro Psychiatric Center campus in East Flatbush, the latest project in what’s known as the Vital Brooklyn initiative to address disparities in the borough.

The Kingsboro project, found on Clarkson Avenue, will include 900 affordable homes, green space, a basketball court, urban farming areas, a greenhouse and two homeless shelters. The psychiatric hospital will stay at the site.

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“The COVID-19 pandemic further exposed the inequalities among the state’s at-risk and in-need communities, including a fundamental need for safe and affordable housing,” Cuomo said in a release. “Through the Vital Brooklyn initiative, we are better addressing these needs by transforming underutilized land on the Kingsboro Psychiatric Center campus into a community-oriented development that provides housing and programming to better serve those in-need, building New York back better, fairer and stronger for all.”

The $400 million Kingsboro project will transform 7.2 acres on the psychiatric center’s campus, according to officials.

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Its 900 affordable units of housing will include senior housing and opportunities for home ownership with amenities ranging from exercise rooms, to a 7,000-square-foot “community hub.” The homeless shelters will replace existing shelters that were first built in the 1930s, according to the plans.

The development will also include a 10,000-square-foot grocery store.

“The redevelopment of a portion of Kingsboro Psychiatric Center will bring more affordable housing to a community that desperately needs it, and the opportunities for healthier and greener living,” Borough President Eric Adams said.

The Vital Brooklyn initiative, first announced in 2017, aims to bring 4,000 affordable homes to Central Brooklyn, which officials say has suffered from economic disparities and disinvestment. On top of the Kingsboro development, two 300-apartment developments are also in the works.

Vital Brooklyn also includes a controversial plan to revamp the area’s health system by consolidating three hospitals. The plan has faced pushback given that it will eliminate all medical beds at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center, which activists have contended will exacerbate the neighborhood’s position as a healthcare desert.

The closure at Kingsbrook was put in motion on July 1 after several delays during the coronavirus crisis.

Check out renderings of the Kingsboro development here:

Courtesy of Adjaye Associates
Courtesy of Adjaye Associates
Courtesy of Adjaye Associates

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