The  61st street Overbuild Project

A new, mixed-use, affordable housing development over existing MTA Subway and freight train tracks.

The  61st street Overbuild Project is a unique opportunity to improve a neighborhood’s pedestrian connections, access to public open space, and create jobs, all by adding affordable housing where no building or street was before.   Our proposal lands seven mixed use buildings on the southern edge of 61st Street, bridging over the LIRR Freight line, but leaving the MTA tracks open to the air and free of construction.

The strength of our masterplan’s design is stitching the various elements of the neighborhood together via pedestrian access, views, public spaces, and commercial program.  We are placing pedestrian bridges immediately in front of the N train entrances on both 8th Ave and Fort Hamilton Parkway that provide direct access to commercial plazas, also providing pedestrians a shorter North/South route to 9th ave.  We are continuing the commercial connection between 8th Ave and Fort Hamilton by adding street facing commercial spaces along 61st avenue, mirroring the local businesses across the street and creating a double loaded corridor of commerce.  We are setting our buildings back an additional 5 feet from 61st street to increase the existing sidewalk from 5 to 10 feet, also to replicate the commercial sidewalk to the north. 

Building 1, a 22 story,  mixed-use with commercial base and residential upper floors presents a commercial plaza on the 8th Avenue edge.The next building to the east, Building 2, is a medium rise composed of affordable housing .  The western side of the ground level is commercial, facing the bustling commercial plaza off 8th ave.  The eastern side of the ground level, facing the residential 9th ave is reserved for community facilities.  The lower roof of Building 2 will be an occupiable green roof featuring shaded seating with views of the bay and community garden plots for tenants to grown their own vegetables.   

We are also proposing to increase the width of the 62nd street sidewalk from 5 feet  to 10 and landscape the embankment to provide a lush, green edge to sit next to.   

The two smaller scale buildings on either side of 9th ave offer a welcoming scale change in deference to the residential blocks to the north, and frame the new pedestrian plaza that spans over the tracks, cutting the time for a pedestrian to walk to Leif Erickson Park in half.  Both of these buildings have community facilities on their ground level. 

On the south side of the overbuild, we propose landscaping pedestrian walkways in-between the two commercial plazas and the large pedestrian plaza spanning over 9th avenue.  This pedestrian plaza will become a green center for residents to meet, exercise and enjoy access to fresh foods from a GrowNYC Greenmarket.   

Client: Camber Property Group
Location: Sunset Park Brooklyn, New York
Program: Mixed-use, Affordable Housing + Community Facilities + Landscape
Area: 1,250,000 sf