The long awaited residential and retail building at 200 Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights has now begun leasing, reports The Brooklyn Eagle.

This building is the latest addition to Brooklyn’s rapidly growing skyscraper district. The district is centered around Court Street between Livingston and Montague Street, and now includes over 21 historic structures.

The new 20-story building, which contains 121 apartments, is being handled by MNS, a Williamsburg-based firm. And was designed by international architecture firm Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners.

The design “pays homage to the area’s historic architecture with its verticality, rhythmic dark facade, including a polished black granite based, profiled piers, bronze-tone metal detailing, and charcoal-grey colored window frames,” according to a statement from the firm.

The building is replacing an earlier landmarked version of 200 Montague Street that could only be described as a somewhat plain modernist low-rise building. Built in 1959-60 to house the former Lafayette National Bank of Brooklyn, the original site was only two stories high.

Later, two more stories were added. And even with such meticulous planning many locals and preservationists are still against the old building’s demolition.

Jesse Denno of the Historic Districts Council said, “This building speaks to the district’s commercial development in the post-war urban renewal years.” And Christabel Gough of the Society for the Architecture of the City stated that the new building “brought a historically significant dose of Modernism to a neighborhood full of old-fashioned office towers.”

However, this is clearly the minority view as both Community Board 2 and the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved the plan.

Amenities being offering in the new building included a fitness center, children’s playroom, communal laundry, private terraces and more. And in addition to residential offerings, residents will have easy access to the 7,000 sq ft of intended in-house retail.

Kimberlean Donis

Kimberlean Donis is a freelance journalist based in Brooklyn. She is a student at both London City University and Williams College majoring in Political Science, Art History, and Africana Studies.

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