Plans for a boutique hotel on Duffield Street appear to be moving forward independently of the contentious eminent domain proceedings that may hit the Underground Railroad houses just a few doors down. A group of investors recently closed on the purchase of 237 Duffield Street for $9.5 million, according to public records.... The forthcoming “seamless blend of ergonomics and urbanity” still has a ways to go before it graces Downtown Brooklyn, though: The DOB doesn’t show any applications filed for the demolition of the VIM building at 237 Duffield.To read more, including user comments, click here.
The reality of these new hotels flies in the face of the justification for eminent domain in the area. Joe Chan of the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership was quoted today regarding the small park that he wants to build after destroying the Duffield Abolitionist homes:
Willoughby Square has always been the centerpiece of the plan, and is an important incentive to attract private investment....Willoughby Square will be 1.15 acres. That's a pretty small "centerpiece" next to all these new hotels.
Acquisition of property is critical and necessary for Willoughby Square to move forward — and without Willoughby Square, much of this new investment, and therefore businesses, jobs and housing, will not happen.