Drug deal — Pfizer angers locals by putting last three lots up for sale

The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

The makers of Viagra are pulling all the way out of Williamsburg.

Global pharmaceutical giant Pfizer — which operated in South Williamsburg from 1849 until closing in 2007 — has listed its last three parcels on Harrison Avenue near Gerry Street and Wallabout Street.

The price? “Negotiable,” according to the sales listing.

The properties represent the last trace of the company’s 162 years in Brooklyn — a legacy that includes reducing cholesterol and enhancing erections — and the proposed sale is a blow to neighborhood residents and housing groups who hoped to develop below-market-rate housing there.

“They should have found a way before selling them off to have a conversation with the community and hear the community’s vision for the site,” said Williamsburg activist Juan Ramos. “They don’t value [former] workers who lived and worked in this community.”

But Pfizer spokesman Christopher Loder disagreed.’

“We will continue to maintain open and transparent communications with the community regarding both this project and our other properties,” Loder said. “Pfizer is committed to keeping the interests of the community in mind as we decide the future of the sites.”

Pfizer has eagerly tried to sell its properties adjacent to those city sites since it closed down its pill-producing plant and laid off 1,100 workers in 2007.

Two years ago, the company dropped a plan to sell some of those properties for mixed-use development which would have brought in more than 1,000 apartments. That retreat angered Assemblyman Vito Lopez (D–Williamsbu­rg), who has pushed Pfizer for several years to allow affordable housing to be built on its sites.

In February, Pfizer sold its six-story defunct pill-producing plant to Acumen Capital Partners for $19 million and its adjacent lots for $7 million. Acumen converted the plant to a small business incubator and will not rezone its properties.

The properties have have drawn interest from several developers, including a group of six nonprofit housing organizations.

“Our primary interest is seeing affodable housing developed there,” said St. Nicks Alliance President Michael Rochford. “But the key is what it would cost.”

Reach reporter Aaron Short at or by calling (718) 260-2547.
Updated 5:28 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

k says:
wish I could get an affordable house, I guess I work to hard to qualify, how wrong is that
Dec. 19, 2011, 10:30 am
Herb from Brooklyn says:
I guess the locals are saying to Pfizer: "Hey, what's yours is mine and what's mine is mine!"
Dec. 19, 2011, 1:39 pm
Mike from Williamsburg says:
1,000 apartments on that site are definitely going to be more affordable than similar apartments near the Bedford L stop. That's good enough for me, and certainly better than feeding Vito Lopez's corrupt empire. He should focus on affordable administration of non-profit agencies.
Dec. 19, 2011, 5:32 pm
bill from glendale says:
lopez and fisher and his witch looking girlfriend belong in jail gov and attorney general better listen we know hes your buddy but he is a piece of garbage and they use our tax money to give themselfs a raise they make more than you MR GOV THEN THEY TRY TO JUSTIFIY IT AFTER WITH PHONY PAPERWORK IF THAT WAS A BLACK OR HISPANIC THERE BE IN JAIL DONT WORRY VITO AND THE WITCH AND FISHER YOU BE IN JAIL SOON
Dec. 19, 2011, 7:52 pm

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: