Plans have been in the works for years to redevelop Staten Island’s north shore.
Now, there are some visible signs of progress at one site, where a residential and retail space is expected to rise. NY1’s Amanda Farinacci filed the following report.
At one time it was home to the U.S. Navy, a 36-acre space known as the Staten Island Homeport—but don’t call it that anymore.
With plans to open next summer as a retail and residential space, the site has a new vibe and a new name: URL.
“Urban Ready Living. And it’s kind of a new paradigm for living in the cities and we’re excited to bring it to Staten Island. I think it’s going to be new, and fresh, and different,” says David Barry of Ironstate Development.
Ironstate Development bought the site back in 2008 with plans to build 900 units of housing and 30,000 square feet of retail space.
The first phase includes some 571 housing units meant to keep 20-somethings on Staten Island by giving them a place to rent that’s affordable.
Renting at URL comes with a host of amenities, like an outdoor pool, a community garden and a 4,000 square foot gym and yoga studio.
There’s also a cafe in the lobby, called Coffeed.
“We are locally sourced. We have a rooftop farm through the Brooklyn Grange that we use a lot of our produce from. We are very community-based, community-focused, community-centric,” says Coffeed’s Turtle Raffaele.
That’s good news for the entire waterfront, because Raffaele will also serve as the site’s social programmer.
He says he’s eager to include all the neighboring communities on events planned at URL.
No word yet on the rest of the retail space, but the developer says tenants are likely to be small businesses from around the city who may be looking for second or third locations.
Even when construction on the Homeport is complete, Barry says there’s one issue he’ll continue to push: creating a path that will connect all of the private development projects planned for the north shore.
“Naturally, there’s going to be a desire and an impetus to connect these areas. I think it’s something we all have to work on together,” Barry says.
The city is pumping $32 million into the project, fixing streets and building a waterfront esplanade—all being built to new Federal Emergency Management Agency flood standards.