Giant Postmodern Towers by Two Trees Developers to Blight Williamsburg Waterfront

Replaces decaying Con Edison Terminal, so still an improvement

Brooklyn from the Air by Kris Arnold. License: CC BY-SA 2.0 –

(BROOKLYN, NEW YORK)— Two Trees Management has unveiled new renderings for two new mixed-used towers that will spring up at the site of a former Con Edison site in Williamsburg, Gothamistreports. The towers will be funded by the same developers who pushed the other post-modern luxury condos springing up at the site of the former Domino Sugar Factory further down the shore.

The towers were designed by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, will be among many in the new cluster of luxury condos. At 55 stories, it will be one of the tallest developments in Williamsburg. The image shows a series of post-modern, glassy towers dominating the shoreline—securing the best views for prospective luxury tenants and property owners and casting a long shadow over the rest of Williamsburg.

Despite drawn out negotiations between De Blasio and Two Trees CEO Jed Walentas (who also donated $100,000 to De Blasio’s pet non-profit project CONY) for more affordable housing in the Domino Sugar Factory site, only 25% of units in the new Ingels-designed towers at the former Con Edison site will be set aside as affordable units. Affordable housing, by definition, is determined by area median income. As luxury condos attract wealthy buyers who raise the median income overall, affordable units still may not be priced as low as a market rate unit before the development.

The one plus side to the site seems to be its environmental goals. CurbedNY Reports that the development will include “a circular esplanade extending into the East River, a sandy beach, tidal pools, a fishing pier, salt marsh, a boating cove on North 1st Street, and an amphitheater.”

Many community members have pushed backagainst the development. Williamsburg residents are citing the strain on the L as well as other community resources in Williamsburg. Although the building will bring some affordable housing, it will bring much more luxury housing, and further accelerate gentrification in a strained neighborhood.

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