Full course description
This case study describes the key elements of Rheingold Brewery redevelopment in Bushwick, Brooklyn, New York. The timeline, funding, zoning, market, and community impact were all discussed. The former brewery was in Bushwick, a low-income, substantially Hispanic, and industrial neighborhood with good access to public transit, while the brewery site itself had been contaminated and long abandoned. Led by a community organization, a local politician, an experienced builder, and city government, the project was initiated by creatively using U.S. EPA technical support. The project required significant remediation and use of a whole range of public and private funding sources for affordable housing and community facilities. Each phase involved different funding, various public-private partnerships, and developers, including planning, community facilities, and a mix of market-rate and affordable housing. Some have labeled the changes in the community gentrification, with the residents of the new buildings somewhat younger and more affluent, yet in other ways similar to, and often from, the existing community. This was a project whose challenges and opportunities changed over time. From overcoming decades of neglect to managing redevelopment and change, this series of Rheingold Brewery site redevelopment projects could teach many lessons.