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Withdrawal of Private Developers from Gowanus Canal Area Could Lead to More Affordable Housing, According to Baruch College Newman Real Estate Institute

New York, NY, March 6, 2010 – The exit of private developers from the Gowanus Canal area, a prospect feared by many in light of the EPA’s recent designation of the area as a Superfund site and this week’s announcement by Toll Brothers that they would not pursue their development plans, might turn out to be a boon to New York City residents in need of affordable housing, according to Jack S. Nyman, director of the Steven L. Newman Real Estate Institute at Baruch College.

Support for this argument will be detailed in the study “Reconsidering Gowanus: Opportunities for the Sustainable Transformation of an Industrial Neighborhood,” to be issued by Baruch’s Newman Real Estate Institute in April 2010.

“We believe there is hidden opportunity in the Superfund designation of the Gowanus Canal area,” said Nyman. “The departure of some high-end developers from the area means there can be more room for the construction of affordable housing. Instead of luxury condos, we could see an influx of mixed-income housing units, with a higher affordable housing component, which are desperately needed in New York City.”

It was announced yesterday that a city-financed consortium will move forward with its plans to build 774 units of new housing, 70 percent of which will be set aside as affordable housing. The development will be known as “Gowanus Green.”

For more information or to schedule an interview with Jack Nyman, please contact:


CONTACT: Jennifer Pauly;



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