Prospect Heights developers offer virtual tours of Pacific Park Brooklyn

Prospect Heights is part of Pacific Park Brooklyn, a U.S. Immigration Fund Project
Originally posted in NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, Sunday, June 5, 2016, 12:07 AM, By NYC PAPERS OUT. Social media use restricted to low res file max 184 x 128 pixels and 72 dpi
The largest development in Brooklyn has gone virtual.It’s going to be another decade before Pacific Park Brooklyn is complete with its 6,430 apartments surrounding that rarest of city amenities — a large, new park. So to help people envision what the area will look like, developers are offering the newest sort of tour — a virtual one.

Using a smart phone and Google Cardboard or stopping by the developer’s sales offices at Barclays Center, the anchor of the sprawling development, people can take a gander at a CGI version of what the future holds.

For this planned neighborhood, the future resembles an idealized video game.

“It’s like a computer game but better than a computer game because of the photo realism,” Adam Greene of Forest City Ratner Companies, said.

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It’s not surprising that Greene, an architect turned developer, is such a fan of the cutting-edge marketing tool. What’s depicted on the screen is idyllic, with a dog barking in the background, lush landscaping and kids playing.

Walking around Prospect Heights, it’s difficult to see what the 22 acres of Pacific Park Brooklyn will become. For blocks, it’s a massive construction site, with buildings in various stages of going up and a huge pit where LIRR trains travel, being enclosed. As buildings are completed, the eight-acre park is created in stages.

The virtual tour, focusing on these exteriors, is for those considering a move here or who already call Prospect Heights home and want to see what Frank Gehry’s master plan looks like.

Neighbors initially fought the $4.9 billion development, a venture by Forest City Ratner Companies and Greenland, USA. Lawsuits have been settled and none remain that would delay construction, said Michael Rapfogel, a spokesmen for Forest City.

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On Thursday, as most days, some 600 workers were at the site, much of which is enclosed by a 16-foot high fence, decorated with original art.

Of the 6,430 apartments, 2,250 are set aside for affordable housing, with household income limits between $20,675 for a single person and up to $144,960 for a family of four. The lottery for the first building at 461 Dean St. is open and people will begin moving in this fall.

“The buildings were designed to be of the neighborhood,” Greene said. “They’re very low density. There’s a lot of sensitivity about scale. It has the scale of a (Robert) Moses plan but with the sensitivity of Jane Jacobs. This is designed to grow out of small stoops.”