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Thread: Brooklyn neighborhoods

  1. #16
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    What the hell is a bump?

  2. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by billyblancoNYC
    What the hell is a bump?
    Posting "any new info on this?" etc... to raise the thread to the top of the forum, or bring it into "new posts"

  3. #18

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    Bumping is posting useless remarks. It wastes peoples time reading it.

  4. #19
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    Thanks. Logical, but needed to know for sure.

  5. #20
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    Greenpoint, Brooklyn:


    April 2005

    Waterfront projects may put green in Greenpoint


    By Dorn Townsend

    On a recent sunny weekend afternoon, a small group of bed-headed twenty-somethings waited for a table outside the Greenpoint Coffee House on Franklin Avenue. New arrivals in what used to be the most overlooked and run-down section of the neighborhood, they pointed out some of the new bars and galleries and said they were comforted by the area's budding chic.

    "The hardest thing about living in this neighborhood is getting to Manhattan for work," said Eric Marshall, a 29-year-old graphic artist. "But our remoteness works both ways; it means that it's also hard for people to get here, so maybe this area won't go crazy with development like other parts of Brooklyn."

    But had this group heard about the proposed rezoning of the adjacent waterfront?

    "I hear they're still fighting that one out in court, so it probably won't start for a few years," said Marshall.

    Marshall and his friends are part of a continuing influx of new, young residents who have brought this Polish enclave a smattering of bright ethnic restaurants, bars playing alternative rock, and sharply rising rental costs. Last month, the city planning commission approved a plan to rezone a huge swath of the Williamsburg- Greenpoint waterfront, ushering in a transformative new era of development that will affect the neighborhood's last frontier. The plans have been sent to the City Council for review, the final step in the city's formal, seven-month public review process known as the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure. The Council is expected to hold hearings this month.

    Plans include a two-mile-long pedestrian esplanade to replace chain-link fences now blocking access to the waterfront. Studded along that landscaped ribbon, 20 condominiums of varying heights will be built. Plans also exist for several playgrounds, retail space at the base of those condos, and water taxi service linking Greenpoint with Midtown.

    "The whole landscape of Greenpoint will change," said Tom Le, a Fillmore broker. "This is a very exciting time, and the waterfront development will impact the whole market."

    No definitive plans exist, but brokers anticipate that over the next decade between 3,000 and 8,000 new units will be built along the waterfront in Greenpoint. All of this construction will occur in what is now the most desolate pocket of the neighborhood.

    Brokers say that the waterfront construction will greatly accelerate developments already changing that no-man's land. In the last two years, several new cafes, bars, galleries, and yoga studios opened along Franklin Avenue, the main artery of that sliver of Greenpoint. Despite the lack of convenient public transit to Manhattan, brokers say that many of their young walk-in clients are looking to rent space in that area.

    "The same thing that happened along Bedford 10 years ago is happening along Franklin Avenue right now," said Rosemarie Pawlikowski, a real estate agent for Albero Parkside Realty. "Young people and artists have begun turning those warehouses into loft spaces. That part of Greenpoint is becoming the new Williamsburg."

    It is unclear just how much waterfront development will change Greenpoint's real estate market. According to Fillmore, the cost of one- and two-family houses has already risen by 25 percent to 38 percent, depending on whether the home is built with brick or wood.

    Rental prices, however, have stabilized. Several years ago the average monthly cost of a one-bedroom apartment was about $1,400, but these days, brokers agree similar apartments are going for $1,200.

    "Greenpoint is a very stable neighborhood and the biggest problem has always been the lack of transit directly to Manhattan," said Le. "But what's about to happen to this neighborhood is going to change the whole landscape."


    Copyright © 2003-2005 The Real Deal.

  6. #21
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    Prospect Park South , Brooklyn:


    Near Prospect Park, a Touch of Greenwich


    By CLAIRE WILSON
    Published: May 1, 2005

    WHAT do you get when you sell a three-bedroom, 1,500-square-foot Brooklyn Heights co-op for $1 million and buy a seven-bedroom, 4,000-square-foot house 10 minutes away in Prospect Park South for $1.025 million?

    According to Felicia Kang, who, with her husband, Tom Rosenthal, just made that move, you get a terrific bargain with lots more room - and a serious furniture deficit that has only one short-term solution.

    "We just let the kids ride their bikes and scooters around and around," said Ms. Kang, who has three children, Emma, 5, George, 3, and 7-week-old Julia, born right around moving day. "We don't have to worry about them knocking into the piano."

    There's also plenty of green space for children outside the family's landmarked Dutch colonial house, which sits with other stately homes along a landscaped median in Prospect Park South, one of Brooklyn's prettiest neighborhoods. Just steps from the 526-acre Prospect Park and served at two stops by the Q and B subway lines, Church Avenue and Beverley Road, the neighborhood is part of what is known as Victorian Flatbush.

    But that term doesn't do justice to the mixed bag of grand, sprawling, early 20th century architectural gems that range from Colonial Revival, Tudor, Italian Villa, Queen Anne, Arts and Crafts and Greek Revival to a whimsical Japanese-inspired house complete with pagoda-style curlicues along the roofline.

    "It is like living under a Christmas tree, this village of neatly arranged houses under a green canopy with a mall going down the center," said Roslyn Huebener, who is a principal in Aguayo & Huebener, a Brooklyn real estate company, and the former owner of the house bought by Ms. Kang and Mr. Rosenthal. "It's hard to believe you are in the city."

    The sense of a "Country in the City" was what the developer Dean Alvord set out to create when he purchased 40 acres from the Flatbush Dutch Reformed Church in 1892. The streets were given British names, and houses went up on minimum lots of 50 by 100 feet, set back 30 feet from the curb. Early residents included chief executives of Gillette, Sperry Gyroscope and McAllister Brothers, the tugboat fleet.

    Two of the streets, Buckingham Road and Albemarle Road, have medians. Lots along them are slightly larger than those of their neighbors; one house, with 21 rooms and a ballroom, is on the market for $4 million. But even with smaller yards and no median, houses on the other dozen or so blocks within this 0.08-square-mile garden spot are no less desirable. Price tags of $1 million have become the norm since breaking that seven-figure barrier in December and prices in what has long been considered a seriously undervalued area are going up at a faster rate than they ever did, according to Nicole Shaw, an associate broker with the Corcoran Group.

    "Prices have gone up between 10 percent and 20 percent since January, but it is still a good value," said Ms. Shaw.

    Reginald Middleton, an Argyle Road resident, calls his neighborhood the Gold Coast of Victorian Flatbush. He estimates the value of his 6,070-square-foot house, which includes a screening room and koi pond, at $2 million in the current market, up from the $780,000 he paid for it in 2002. But he says that at $380 a square foot, Prospect Park South is a bargain compared with $580 a square foot in downtown Brooklyn neighborhoods and $1,100 a square foot in Manhattan's Chelsea.

    "We also have amenities that are unheard of in Brooklyn Heights and we're eight minutes away: large yards, private security and a community feel, and we also now have restaurants and a dry cleaner that delivers," said Mr. Middleton, a real estate investor with two sons. "Weigh everything, and net-net the property is undervalued."

    Mary Kay Gallagher, a broker in the area for 35 years, draws another important distinction between Prospect Park South and gentrified row-house Brooklyn. "We have driveways and parking - parking is key," said Mrs. Gallagher, who has lived in the same house on Marlborough Road for almost four decades. "Park Slope has no driveways and no garages, and you have to negotiate to get a parking space."

    The one co-op in the area, a red brick 28-unit prewar building at 1409 Albemarle Road, is 95 percent owner-occupied and units seldom come on the market, according to Hal Lehrman, principal broker for Brooklyn Properties.

    "We sold a 900-square-foot two-bedroom, one-bath unit in 2002 for $127,000 and I would expect to sell that now for over $300,000," he said. "The views are spectacular."

    There is only one rental building, and available apartments are rare. The going rate is $1,100 a month for a two-bedroom, one-bath apartment, according to Mrs. Gallagher.

    There are 1,500 residents in Prospect Park South, and the median household income is $57,823. It is 35 minutes by subway from Midtown Manhattan. The community as a whole is often loosely referred to as "Ditmas," for the better-known nearby districts of Ditmas Park and Ditmas Park West, two of 10 adjoining enclaves within Victorian Flatbush, each with its own civic association.

    Prospect Park South homeowners pay $500 a year for security guards although the crime rate is among the lowest in the 70th Precinct, according to Nathan Thompson, security chair for the Prospect Park South Association. "Most of our issues are on the fringes - around the subway stations," Mr. Thompson said. "We've had a great year, but the reality is you are still in New York."

    Like the Kang-Rosenthal clan, most new residents come from other parts of Brooklyn and they are primarily young families drawn by an enthusiastically child-friendly atmosphere. Bruce Williams, a vice president with J. P. Morgan, and his wife, Bridget, owner of Hot Toddie Children's Clothier, a store selling children's clothes, toys and accessories in Fort Greene, moved from Clinton Hill and still can't believe the welcome for their two children, Jett, 4, and Lola, 2. "We hadn't even moved in yet and they were calling to invite us to the Halloween March," said Ms. Williams, who moved in December into a nine-bedroom, three-and-a-half bath Victorian house for which the couple paid $975,000. "The families with children are amazing in the way they reach out."

    Ms. Williams also has high praise for the large number of ethnic groups living in the Flatbush community at large. "Stand on the Q train platform and you see everybody from every walk of life, every complexion and every religion," she said. "It's wonderful - you feel like you live in New York."

    This year's Victorian Flatbush House Tour on June 12 will be held in tandem with a daylong arts and crafts fair. But children's activities dominate the local calendar, from play dates to pick-up games of volleyball or basketball organized in the Parade Ground a block away by Flatbush Athletics volunteers. There are children's events every Wednesday at Vox Pop, the new neighborhood bookstore/cafe, and an association called the Flatbush Family Network keeps everyone informed.

    Schools in the area include Public School 139 on Rugby Road, with prekindergarten through grade 5. Of fourth grade students there, 65.4 percent scored at or above grade level in English while 74.7 percent scored at or above grade level in math. At Public School 217 on Newkirk Avenue, also with prekindergarten through grade 5, 60.7 percent of fourth graders scored at or above grade level in English and 75.6 percent performed at or above grade level in math.

    Two middle schools serve the area. At Junior High School 62, the Ditmas School on Cortelyou Road, 21.4 percent of eighth grade students scored at or above grade level in English and 34.7 percent performed at or above grade level in math. At Intermediate School 240, the Andries Hudde School on Nostrand Avenue, 59.9 percent of eighth graders scored at or above grade level in English and 71.1 percent in math.

    Most local students go on to Midwood High School on Bedford Avenue. Of students there taking the 2004 SAT reasoning test, the average score was 514 on the verbal test, compared with 444 statewide, and 544 on the math, compared with 472 statewide.

    Church Avenue pulses with commercial activity, but the shopping street of choice for most is Cortelyou Road a block away. There is an Associated Supermarket, the Flatbush Food Co-op and a seasonal Greenmarket, which will have 12 to 15 vendors beginning in early June.

    Cortelyou Road is getting spruced up with new street lamps and benches, and new businesses moving in might suggest an invitation for the hipster crowd to have second thoughts about Williamsburg. Sander Hicks and his wife, Holly Anderson, own Vox Pop (Motto: "Books, Coffee, Democracy"). There are lines to get a table at Picket Fence, owned by Graham Meyerson, who cooked at the Union Square Cafe.

    Interested hipsters may have to wait for space in the neighborhood, just as they wait for tables at Picket Fence. "Nobody is moving," Mrs. Gallagher said. "Why would they?"


    Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company

  7. #22
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    13 May 2005 | HOW TO
    The Non-Expert: Gentrify! Gentrify!

    Experts answer what they know. The Non-Expert answers anything. This week Andrew Womack shows how you can fight New York’s soaring real-estate costs when you invade an unfamiliar neighborhood. Making friends will never be so hard.


    Have a question? Need some advice? Ignored by everyone else? Send your questions via email. The Non-Expert’s Desk handles all subjects and is updated every Friday, and is written by a member of The Morning News staff.

    Question: Hi! I’m thinking about moving to New York but every time I look at rent prices I’m just blown away by how expensive everything is. I know there are parts of Brooklyn that are good to move to, but even those seem pretty pricey. Any suggestions on new places to live in New York?—Jill A.

    Answer: Since 1621, when Dutch traders purchased Manhattan from Native Americans (and ever since which time many agree that it’s “really lost its edge”), patches of land in New York have been in a constant state of gentrification—of being rediscovered, remodeled, and resold as acceptable areas in which to live. In fact, only 30 years ago Soho was uncharted territory, the domain of artists and their drug dealers, and Kim Basinger and Mickey Rourke could regularly be spotted having sex in a stairwell. Look at it now! These days, you can’t even afford that stairwell. So to move here on the cheap, you have to find someplace new to people like you but old to people like them, someplace that nobody at New York magazine knows anything about yet. Someplace you can gentrify on your own.

    It’s true there are still such parts of New York, parts even real-estate brokers can’t with a straight face qualify as “up-and-coming neighborhoods.” And those areas are exactly the outskirts, the hinterlands, the ridiculously cheap-rent neighborhoods you’re looking for! You want to find a place that makes you, upon emerging from the subway and coming face to face with the locals, recoil in fear. But no worries! You are a pioneer, and everybody loves a pioneer, and you have health insurance.

    Here’s how you do it.


    Find a Neighborhood

    First familiarize yourself with all of New York’s many wondrous neighborhoods. Now immediately scratch those off your list. Accept now that you won’t be living in a desirable area—that is, until you’re done gentrifying it! Also, knowing where the sought-after areas are located will make you privy to the ways New York real-estate brokers redraw neighborhood borders to spiff up their housing ads. For example, according to brokers right now “Williamsburg” reaches all the way north to Long Island City, everything is “ONLY 15 MINS TO MANHATTAN,” and Brooklyn’s “South Park Slope” is in fact the northern tip of Staten Island.

    No, brokerages and housing ads won’t find you into the place you’re looking for, because the only places worth advertising are already well-gentrified or close enough. Thus, you’re going to have to go a step further—or rather, a stop further. Take a train, any train, to any desirable area, stay on for four more stops, get out there, and perform the following litmus test.

    Do you see anyone between the ages of 18 and 34 with speckles of paint on their clothing?

    No?

    Do you see any bars, restaurants, or stores that look worth going into?

    No?

    Was that a tumbleweed that just blew by?

    Welcome home.


    Rent an Apartment

    The best way to find somewhere to live in an ungentrified area is through word of mouth. Since you don’t speak the native language around here (Is it Dutch? Can’t tell), you’ll have to do the next best thing—look for rental signs taped up in windows. Lucky for you, every landlord the world around uses those pre-printed “ROOM FOR RENT” signs you can pick up at the hardware store, so just keep walking up and down the blocks until you spot one. Then knock on the door and play it by ear.

    Landlord: [says something in Dutch]

    You: Hi! I’m here about the apartment?

    Landlord: [looks you over, says something else]

    You: Is now a good time?

    Landlord: [silent, steps back, folds arms across chest]

    You: How does five hundred dollars a month sound?

    Landlord: [lets you in, leads you up to your new apartment]


    Blend in With the Locals

    You may have bought your way into the area, but you won’t be able to buy your way into their hearts. In fact, being a New York gentrifier is a lot like being a nerd in middle school: Everybody around you thinks you’re dressed funny, you can’t even pay people to be your friends (you’ve tried), and you get beat up every time you walk home from the subway.

    Thankfully, the area’s homeless aren’t as discriminating. Besides, the locals know to steer clear of them—so by befriending a bum, you get a bodyguard at the same time. But don’t offer your friendship through the expected ply of free alcohol and cigarettes. No, get a bum to be your roommate. But claim the top bunk now, and I cannot stress how important this is.

    Then it’ll be just like the movie My Bodyguard, with the bum being the big, tough guy who protects you, and you being the other guy. Lucas or something. Rodney maybe.


    Buy Property

    Once you’re ready to plant permanent stakes, it’s time to say goodbye to your landlord and your roommate (leave no forwarding address to either, by the way) and consider purchasing your very own home. By now you will have learned your way around enough to know where those guys who stole your iPod usually hang out, so it’s best to not shop in that part of town.

    While looking into residential dwellings may sound sweet to your domestic side, keep in mind that you’re not just here for the cheap housing—you’re here for the spoils. Look for empty warehouses and shut-down factories, the kinds of places you’ll eventually build into lofts that you’ll sell in 2025 for a billion dollars a pop to Busta Rhymes’s children.

    Keep in mind, though, that there are some types of buildings that are especially well-suited to your dreams of a future—and marketable—loft empire that will attract young financial workers. Such buildings include:

    —burned-out plastics factory

    —abandoned experimental psych ward

    —anything haunted or said to be haunted

    —Men’s Wearhouse


    Start a Real-Estate Craze

    Now that you’re living rich, or at least not rich—yet—but you’re living cheap with lots of floor space, remember this: The neighborhood needs some high-profile attention or it’ll never become the kind of place other people would pay, beg, or provide their parents’ tax returns to live in. So take a grassroots approach, and tell everyone how great your new neighborhood is…whatever it’s called. Helpful tip: If the neighborhood’s old name has an unfortunate history or reputation to, simply add “Heights” or “Hill” to its original name.

    Before you know it, your friends will move into the buildings around you, art galleries will open their doors, finally a decent place to get cilantro will show up around the corner, and people will be absolutely flooding over from Manhattan—which you can tell everyone is only 15 minutes away.



    Andrew Womack is a co-publisher of The Morning News, and lives in Brooklyn. Click here to read his other stories on TMN.

  8. #23

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    This whole thread makes me want to vomit. "HOW TO GENTRIFY?" WTF. Now I know why my neighborhood is going down the tubes. Thanks!

  9. #24

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    Welcome to the boards! I have a feeling that you and I are going to get along just fine, Jennifer.

  10. #25

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    Err... are you messing with me? (I do fully expect that with what I posted).

    I just hate seeing my neighborhood become a yuppie hellhole... it's rather depressing. And hoping I don't get kicked out to make room for a trustfunder who gets everything from Mommy and Daddy...

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    Indeed, crack viles and boarded up windows rule...

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by jennifer
    Err... are you messing with me? (I do fully expect that with what I posted).
    the morning news "how to" is a joke, but Schadenfrau's not. You'll find more posters that think gentrification is good than not on the board, but you're not alone.

  13. #28

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    Thanks for clarifying, Ryan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Schadenfrau
    Thanks for clarifying, Ryan.
    not that you need it...

  15. #30

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    I'll throw a blanket compliment right back at you.

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