Well, there goes my dream of reopening the long-shuttered Beefsteak Charlie’s, sitting back, and wasting away the rest of my life with an endless supply of cocktail shrimp.
After two attempts to get medical facilities off the ground, 3121 Ocean Avenue, the former home of Beefsteak Charlie’s, was purchased by Chestnut Realty for $5.1 million on April 24.
And just in case you thought maybe they’d like to realize my dream for me, well, nuh-uh. They’re looking to bring in a national chain or a bank. If that doesn’t work, office space it is.
“The current owner is considering developing the site for an office building or to lease to a national anchor tenant. We are currently in negotiation with a financial institution as well as a few other chain tenants, so we will see what will come of it,” said Arsen Atbashyan, CEO of Commercial Acquisitions. Commercial’s Denis Abayev served as listing agent on the deal.
There’s quite a bit they can do with the property. It’s a 21,113 square foot lot, and the building currently there takes up 9,500 square feet. Located in a C1-2/R4 zoning district, they could double the current building’s size and pack it with both commercial and residential units.
Regardless of what happens, it’s likely to be better than the unkempt, derelict lot it’s been since Maimonides Medical Center struggled to get a medical center off the ground in this spot. That followed an attempt to do the same by Coney Island Hospital, which was forced to retreat due to budget cuts.
And, of course, before both those attempts… the Beefsteak, which closed in the late-90s:
A long-standing sidewalk obstacle in front of the derelict Maimonides clinic at 3121 Ocean Avenue is finally being fixed, with contractors on the scene yesterday.
The site was previously a pit covered by a foot-tall concrete slab and surrounded by barricades.
Here’s what it looked like when we passed by in October:
It was covered in trash and debris, and was long on my to-do list for griping here on this site. It bothered me because it not only attracted garbage and was a fairly horrendous eyesore, but also because it was an obstacle that took up a huge portion of sidewalk. Next door to the site is the Bainbridge Center, an adult daycare facility. So it’s fair to assume the area is pretty highly trafficked by seniors and the disabled.
A contractor on the scene told us it was a telephone utility manhole damaged during Superstorm Sandy. Looking into the pit while they worked, it was deep and empty. While the contractor blamed Sandy, I recall this being a problem spot long before the storm, with the sidewalk broken and raised up. I can’t remember if they began the work before the storm, but I believe they did.
It also bothered me because it was supposed to be fixed nearly a year ago. A sign on the site over the summer indicated it was a ConEd job, not a telephone utility, and work was supposed to be done by February:
That never happened. Some time in the fall this sign was spray painted so that the construction information could not be read. Covering tracks much? Maybe.
Hopefully they finish the work quickly and responsibly. It’ll be nice for neighbors to have their sidewalk back, instead of covered in construction and trash.