Industrial Retention

Principles for industrial development and climate resilience on the Sunset Park waterfront


The Sunset Park industrial waterfront is being threatened by land speculation, potential rezonings, and high- end commercialization inconsistent with blue-collar manufacturing. The preservation and expansion of a blue-collar manufacturing base is crucial to the economic viability of a working class community like Sunset Park. The loss of blue-collar jobs and the displacement of working class businesses and residents is a devastating narrative that has unfolded in other neighborhoods; it must not be allowed to occur in Sunset Park.

The following principles seek to ensure local economic development, equity, and resilience in Sunset Park:



1. Ensure community control over infrastructure and planning projects in Sunset Park

  •  Local development priorities have been articulated in community-based 197-a and NYS-funded Brownfield Opportunity Area (BOA) plans
  • Local planning should be guided by community supervision in line with existing plans 


2. Protect the economic needs of long-time residents, workers and businesses

  • Local residents and businesses are increasingly facing flat wages, heavy rent burdens, and the threat of displacement
  • Ensure that economic development on the waterfront directly benefits the local community

3. Expand blue-collar union, career-track jobs

  • Manufacturing jobs pay twice the annual salary of service sector jobs in much of the city
  • Promote businesses and career opportunities at all skill levels, career advancement, and income mobility
  • Commercialization of the waterfront threatens to replace blue-collar manufacturing with service job

4. Promote the development of maritime-dependent industrial uses

  • Maritime-dependent uses reduce truck traffic and emissions

  • The development of port facilities, particularly at South Brooklyn Marine Terminal, would stimulate local industrial job growth and should be prioritized above other uses

5. Protect land zoned for manufacturing

  • Restrict any rezonings or zoning variance applications that reduce land zoned for manufacturing to accommodate commercial or residential uses

  • Rezonings and variances lead to land speculation, which result in rising rents and displacement of existing jobs

6. Incorporate climate adaptation and resiliency into waterfront development

  • Promote industries that contribute to the climate adaptation needs of the community, city, and region and identify cost-effective opportunities to save energy

  • Encourage businesses to minimize waste