Z. Madison

For when you're relaxing at home or killing company time - Z. Madison's here for you.

5.23.2006

This Is Really Thinking Outside The Box


The fine landmark you see above is the Brooklyn House of Detention. In layman's terms - The Brooklyn Jail. It resides on the corner of Smith St. and Atlantic Ave. lurking over the hipster shopping and eating Mecca to the South. There's also a quaint Quaker School next door. I've always looked at it with a bit of disdain and imagined the incarcerated inmates to be driven crazy being able to see all the hustle and bustle down below.

Well, I'm wrong. It's sitting empty. Just one more prime piece of real estate in a land hungry enclave whose property values are sending hopeful buyers into a tizzy.

Imagine my surprise when I saw the unthinkable today on www.curbed.com. The jail is going to be renovated into...Luxury Housing.

Get the fuck out! was my first thought, too.

"Dumbo developer Jed Walentas, the Brooklyn Paper reports, is proposing knocking down the current Big House (renovated over the last decade to the tune of $50 million) and replacing it with two Big Houses, one a luxury building and the other for inmates. Meanwhile, the Department of Corrections is sorting through proposals for the prime property and looking into plans to reopen the House of D (as a jail), with retail at street level. Rather gives new meaning to "mixed use" development, doesn't it?"

I'm speechless.

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