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BROOKLYN, NY-The New York City Economic Development Corp., the city’s primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs, and the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development are jointly seeking proposals for the acquisition and redevelopment of two former firehouses. The first is located at Wythe Avenue and the second is on DeGraw Street in Brooklyn.

NYCEDC is requesting proposals from not-for-profit cultural institutions and not-for-profit community entities along with qualified developers for the sites. Redevelopment of the sites should transform the now vacant structures into active space for a variety of community, educational and cultural uses.

Development should look to balance preservation of the character and appearance of the site with high-quality and sustainable design and construction. The Wythe Avenue site includes a late 19th Century three-story building of about 6,000 sf. The DeGraw Street firehouse is a two-story building of approximately 4,250 sf.

“These projects will transform the sites into vibrant community assets from vacant facilities and will enhance the neighborhoods and area,” says NYCEDC president Robert C. Lieber. “By reimagining existing vacant space for the city’s critical not-for-profit community and cultural sector, we will continue to provide services and growth opportunities to various organizations.”

The DeGraw Street development site is located between Court Street and Smith Street in the Cobble Hill neighborhood. The lot is about 2,500 sf and the existing 4,250-sf building appears to be in very good condition, according to NYCEDC. The Wythe Avenue development site is located between North Eighth Street and North Ninth Street in Williamsburg. The lot is about 2,500 sf and the 6,000-sf existing building appears to be in very good condition.

Both sites were home to Engine Cos. that were decommissioned in May 2003, and both are currently vacant. In early 2007, the city established a community steering committee to develop plans to guide the reuse and redevelopment of the sites. The steering committee was comprised of representatives of various city agencies, the city council member, the borough president and community board. Informed by the steering committee, these RFPs seek respondents from nonprofit community and cultural entities. Potential uses may include office, workshop, classroom, and multi-purpose space, performance and rehearsal space as well as exhibition and meeting space. Proposals are due by Sept. 17 for the site.

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