Via New York YIMBY, we learned yesterday that construction has begun on BAM South, the residential and retail high-rise, developed by Two Trees, that will double as a hub of sorts for the BAM/Downtown Brooklyn Cultural District. The tower will eventually rise to 32 stories and sits on a triangular plot of land bound by Ashland Place, Flatbush Avenue, and Lafayette Avenue; it’s address will be 286 Ashland.
In addition to some 350 apartments, BAM South will also include more than 20,000 square feet of retail space, and more than twice as much square footage set aside for “cultural space,” which will include space for the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s archives, a branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, a dance studio, and a cinema. The cultural-specific concessions are in keeping with other BAM-led developments in the district, and serve to differentiate them from tower developments in most other parts of Brooklyn, which are usually mixed-use only between residential and retail components.
The approval of the development last summer, which required a zoning variance, drew the consternation of locals. As the Brooklyn Paper reported, the vote approving the high-rise came over objections that the original pitch included office space and fewer apartments, and the new, residential-heavy plan is an unwelcome bait-and-switch. Residents also complained that the tower will obscure the iconic Williamsburgh Savings Bank building.