Stalled Development in the 39th Council District

We need to make these sites into assets for the community. Many of these developments are causing real hazards for their neighbors, with fences falling down on sidewalks, loose construction debris that can become deadly in high winds, and unsecured sites that are dangerous for children and an invitation to squatting.

Help the effort to convert local blight to community benefit by providing feedback and tracking the progress of each site.
Leave comments below on a individual site to update us on the conditions. If you call 311 about an issue, please leave a complaint number in the comment.

Friday, February 5, 2010

23 Caton Place, Kensington

(between Ocean Parkway & East 8th Street)

Project Type: New Building

Project Description: New Building, 8 Stories, 107 Units

Status: Partially finished building skeleton, stalled

UPDATE 8/2010: ECB violation for obstructed exits, building fined 4,000 on August 2nd. Unresolved.

UPDATE 3/15/2010: Contractor has done remedial work to clean and make site safe

Background: “Caton on the Park,” planned since 2004 and designed by architect Karl Fischer, has drawn considerable attention as emblematic of out-of-context development and the stalled construction issue. Community groups considered it to be too large for the local neighborhood, which is generally characterized by one- and two-family homes. The building elicited neighborhood protests and was a factor in the community seeking a contextual rezoning (approved in spring 2009).

From early on, there were numerous complaints about impact to neighboring properties, site safety and after-hours work. Multiple Stop Work Orders were issued – December 2005 because adjacent properties were not protected from the demolition work, September 2006 because the construction was not compliant with approved plans, February 2008 because of further damage to adjacent properties, and April 2008, when debris was ordered to be removed and an a construction fence be repaired or installed. The DOB determined the building was 40% completed.

Cost overruns and market conditions caused financing problems. In June 2008 the lender filed to foreclose on the property, and in August the mezzanine lender filed for bankruptcy. Corus Bank, which made the original mortgage loan, failed and that the debt has been sold to Starwood Capital Group, which has been maintaining the site but not yet indicated its longer-term plans. As of December 2009, the site had 52 active violations, and there was a new set of permits for remedial measures to make the site safe.


  1. This site, this effort is fantastic. I would love to learn more about how the online component was developed - who in your office is executing it?

  2. Thank you for posting this. I live in the neighborhood and the construction has now stalled with no construction workers reporting to the property. However, now there is a new problem--squatters, music at night, lights on inside and persons cat-calling passer-bys, essentially sexually harassing women and girls who reside in the neighborhood. I reported it and hope others will be empowered to organize around this issue. It's definitely a new layer in safety issues.

  3. Has there been any progress on this site? I was curious as to who owns the site now.

  4. Hello,

    I recently noticed that there are workers on this site again. Does anyone know what's happening with this development? Is it back on track?