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Rivera Suites Ready to Break Ground on Knapp and Lacon Court


SSJ Development is ready to break ground on 3 sites in Brooklyn, including Bergen Beach, Knapp St. and Gerritsen Beach (Lacon Court), thanks to $100 Milliion loan from Amalgomated Bank.

The third project, which won’t break ground for several months, is planned for Gerritsen Beach (Lacon Court). The development, a three-story building with 64 units starting at $349,000, will be called the Riviera. The 3.25-acre site comprises 22 lots Mr. Jemal bought up over the past seven years and was once the site of a marina, a repair yard for boats, a billiards club, and a place where a local resident was collecting pigeons.

“It was really beat up,” he said. “It needed attention.”

Some residents of Gerritsen Beach said that while they believed the waterfront needed improvement, they were against Mr. Jemal’s project.

“It’s going to add congestion and change the character of the neighborhood,” a mother of three who grew up in the area, Margaret McCormick, said. Her husband, Kevin, said residents could do little to stop the development.

Still, they and other opponents are hoping that the cost of cleaning up the contaminated soil from the old boat yard will make it too expensive to build the project.

“What he wants to build is the equivalent of a 35-foot wall along a whole stretch of the waterfront,” Mr. McCormick said. “These are fourth-generation families living in houses on double lots. This isn’t Florida.”

Mr. Jemal contended that he is building within the zoning requirements for the area and that his buildings will add to the character of the existing neighborhoods.

“I’m reclaiming the waterfront and opening it up,” he said. “What I’m doing in South Brooklyn will be on line before anything they’re doing in North Brooklyn.”

The last time we checked in on this project there were some issues that needed to be addressed.

  • The project, as currently designed, encroaches upon the rights of an existing marina. (Tamaqua)
  • The owner claims riparian rights to the water where the project is to be constructed in an area of over 30,000 sq. feet of Shell Bank Creek. Riparian Rights are – an owner’s right to reasonable access” to navigable waters, which is determined on a case-by-case basis.
  • The project, as currently presented, may have detrimental ecological impact on native species, – such as the horseshoe crab, which many ecologists feel is a “threatened species”, as well as the many fish who use Shell Bank Creek as a spawning ground.
  • Finally, Concern of the release of contaminants into the creek as a result of any construction from (1) the construction site and (2) disturbing the creek bed, which may have been contaminated by runoff from the water treatment plan on Knapp St
  • Demanding a Public Hearing on this project.

5 comments to Rivera Suites Ready to Break Ground on Knapp and Lacon Court

  • Ginger

    Who are they kidding — a luxury condo complex just steps away from a sprawling sewage plant? across the street from a gas station? and next to a huge storage facility? Sure, the Tamaqua Marina is quaint and nice-looking, but if that’s what “a little bit of Florida” is like, then they can keep it!

    I can’t tell you how many rats I’ve seen in that very space while walking to and from the U.A over the years.

    they must have gotten an *amazing* deal on that strip of land…

    p.s. Is the name of the complex poking fun at the “Irish Riviera” ?

  • Ruth

    Does anyone else get upset about the rape of Gerritsen Beach? When the New York Times first published a spread in the real estate section about the Beach, comparing it to a “a quaint little New England fishing village”, including pictures of various points of interest, the local real estate agents were all smiles, but there were others of us who saw it as it was — a death knell to what the Beach had been. Now we see all these developers and real estate agents swarming over the place. Trees are cut down, houses torn down, gardens bulldozed, access to water fronts blocked — all so developers can make a quick buck before they move on to new areas to destroy. Take a walk down Canton Court between Cyrus and Seba for a prime example of what they have done to the Beach. Complete lack of imagination, cookie cutter buildings — and what’s with this boring sameness of color? Is there no other color in the developers’ catalog? Thank God I have great memories of the Beach before it was discovered and ruined by all these wonderful developers and builders. Too bad it took so long for the building slump to kick in.

  • mouse & cheryl

    we just moved to the beach and love it,if jemal gets his way he can buy my house too,then he can live in the mess he made.to hell with him he should stay in his own neighborhood and develop it.

  • Anonymous

    All Jemel is looking at is big $$$ signs. Just look at what is happening to emmons Avenue , that looks like the future of GB and no one even speaks english anymore .. I feel like a stranger in my own area of the city . Every extra lot is being sold and developed, what a shame!

  • More Annon

    As a homeowner you have a choice to sell to whomever you would like. But you should respect our community. Don’t sell to developers. I understand that as an agent you must by law show the house to anyone, other wise your license can be revoked. Not to mention jail time. But homeowners, please don’t just look at the $$ signs! Remember where you came from. You don’t have to accept every offer. Please look at the person behind the $$ sign!