St. Francis Sells Vacant Brooklyn Heights Campus for $200 Million

We noted in May 2021 that St. Francis College was moving from its campus in Brooklyn Heights (photo) to space in a new building in downtown Brooklyn. Today The Real Deal reported that St. Francis had sold its now vacant campus, located between Remsen and Joralemon streets on the block between Clinton and Court, to Alexico Group, a developer of — guess what? — luxury residences. For the property St. Francis got a cool $200 million. With part of that perhaps they can construct new athletic facilities which, as our 2021 post noted, their new space lacks.

Photo: C. Scales for BHB

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  • TeddyNYC

    Could Alexico build as high as One Clinton on that block?

  • Mike Suko

    I, too, would love an answer, but it’s past time wondering if even a liberal City Council can or will rein in NYC’s now most influential (and probably largest) industry – real estate & construction.

    Now (more than ever), the jobs & tax revenues associated with them are to the city’s financial viability what oxygen is to ours as organisms – indispensable.

    Could the City Council write a statute that made “giant shadows” something that had to be considered?! Probably. But it’s clear that for now, they might get a mention in some report as a negative, but that’s it. Ditto for “altering the character of a neighborhood.” That may matter to many of us, but “it lacks legal standing.”

    Probably, the only hope is the – admit it – “anti-democratic” practice of the rest of the City Council (and City govt) deferring at least a little to – in this case – Lincoln Restler, because anything proposed will be on his turf.

    And – see Levin vs. the monster building near Barclay’s – there will likely be a charade whereby a few stories (never REALLY expected) will be “lopped off” and an extra staircase up from the Boro Hall subway station will be constructed “on Alexico’s dime.”

    For now, the 5 square blocks (5×5) that comprise the North Heights has nothing remotely like that, … but the Central Heights (Montague-to-Atlantic, west of Court) will soon have a tower that’ll make the ugly sliver building on Livingston look like no big deal.

  • Cranberry Beret

    Let the hand-wringing begin!
    The article says the development is as-of-right. Doesn’t sound like they’ll be asking Lincoln Restler (or anyone else) for input.
    This spot is literally next to something called the “Skyscraper Historic District” so not sure why anyone would be worried about a tall tower.

  • Downtown Dad

    While I don’t relish more huge buildings disrupting a very human-scale neighborhood, I feel that we likely need the extra foot traffic new buildings will generate in order to make filling empty Montague St commercial spaces more attractive.

  • Mike Suko

    I think your hopes in that regard – call them a “silver lining” – are likely to fall flat. BHts’ population is much higher than it was 10 years ago, when occupancy rates on Montague, say, were much higher. There are several tall buildings (some newish) on Montague itself, … and for all that there’s lots of WFH, plenty of people use the 2 subway stations on Montague and others nearby.

    The BHA and residents of our community should get behind rebuilding and repurposing of Montague St. with 50- and 75-foot tall buildings, presumably mostly residential.

    Atlantic Avenue – just different zoning is my guess – points the way to something much better than the state of that once key Heights street (and its future) at this point!

  • Andrew Porter

    Making an exception to the 50-foot-high Landmarks rule is a slippery slope to doing away with the rule entirely—and changing the face of the Heights forever, and not for good, IMHO.

  • Supanyc

    How incredibly sad. I graduated from SFC, class of ’90. Hard to think it will become luxury residences. They just did away with their entire athletics program. Where did that $200 million go?