08/28/15 10:30am

Bushwick Mural House 140 Central Avenue

Bushwick’s mural-covered house at 104 Central Avenue, which seems to have launched a trend of colorful facades in Bushwick, has been sold as a development site and will be razed. The sale closed last week for $1,285,000 but has not yet hit public records.

Seller and local business owner Jeremy Sapienza was fed up with Bushwick and saw opportunity in soaring property values. He and partner Luis Velazquez plan to close the last of their two Florida-style Bushwick cafes Sunday, they announced via Facebook Wednesday.

“We’re closing because I haven’t made a dime in two years, Bushwick is a nightmare on earth full of obnoxious yuppie brats, and I’m tired. Maybe that’s not a nice angle, haha,” Sapienza told Brownstoner. (more…)

08/28/15 10:00am

DUMBO facing downtown

You’ve heard of the 421-a tax incentive program, despised by the de Blasio administration and abhorred by many locals, who view it as an antiquated tax break no longer applicable to since-gentrified areas. 421-a, however, is not the end all of tax breaks.

REAP stands for the Relocation and Employment Assistance Program, a relocation tax credit for relocating commercial and industrial businesses, excluding retail and hotels. REAP provides business income tax credits to businesses previously located outside New York, or below 96th Street in Manhattan, that are relocating jobs to the outer boroughs or specified areas above 96th Street.


08/28/15 9:30am

Brooklyn Beer Hall 141 Lawrence

The future inhabitants of Downtown Brooklyn’s towers-in-progress can look forward to sipping suds in a new “relaxed and unpretentious” beer hall at 141 Lawrence Street, DNAinfo reported. Just a stone’s throw from City Point, Ava DoBro, and a handful of other developments, the proposed Fulton Beer Hall will be operated by Gerard Rooney, owner of Putnam’s in Clinton Hill.

Plans for the establishment are impressive: 51 tables (12 of them outdoors) will offer seating for more than 300 thirsty beer-drinkers. A proposed menu features organic meats, wood-fired pizza, and pretzels.


08/28/15 9:00am


The Long Island College Hospital development is beginning to affect neighbor relations. A group of 24 Cobble Hill residents and members of the Cobble Hill Association (CHA) sent out a press release Wednesday calling for the ouster of its first vice president and acting president Roy Sloane.

Some members of the CHA, which staunchly opposed the sale of the former hospital, feel Sloane is not fighting the development as strongly as he should be.

The plans of developer Fortis Property Group — to build high-rise residential towers on the LICH site — have garnered passionate opposition from locals who feel the buildings will be out of scale with the surrounding areas. Despite Sloane’s more than 35 years with the CHA, some members feel his private meetings with Fortis are yielding few of the changes the community desires.


08/28/15 8:30am

Fort Hamilton Parkway Dyker Heights

At This Boerum Hill Church, Everything Must Go [NY Times]
WWII Memorial Back on Display in Downtown Brooklyn [NY Post]
Dyker Heights Feels the Stress of Change [WSJ]
East New York Residents Fighting City’s “Worst Landlord” [News 12]
Three-Story, Six-Unit Residential Building Planned At 438 Humboldt Street, Williamsburg [NYY]
Revealed: 535 Lorimer Street in Williamsburg [NYY]
Saturday Street Closures Near Barclays Center [AYR]
Michelin-Starred Restaurateur Opening “Speak-Easy Sushi Bar” Near Barclays [DNA]

Fort Hamilton Parkway in Dyker Heights.
Brownstoner on Instagram
Photo by Laura Leebove

08/27/15 4:30pm

Paul's Daughter Coney Island

De Blasio’s Costumed Character Task Force Expands to Coney Island and Beyond [Gothamist]
Van Leeuwen Is Giving Away Scoops Tonight in Williamsburg! [Brokelyn]
How a Big Rock Helped Shape the BrooklynQueens Border [Times Newsweekly]
Gowanus Cycle Store Holds Cargo-Bike Rodeo [BK Paper]
Park Slope’s Loom to Close [Park Slope Stoop]
Starliner Cafe to Bring “Little Daily Farmer’s Market” to Prospect Lefferts [DNA]

Photo by Maria Paz Monsalve via Flickr

08/27/15 2:00pm


A bit of old-fashioned fun is racing down Park Slope’s 17th Street this Saturday at the seventh annual Soap Box Derby. Since 2008, Open Source Gallery has been offering workshops in which children ages 7 to 15 build eco-friendly soap box race cars out of “seemingly useless trash,” according to the event’s website.

While there, they learn to use tools ranging from power sanders to drills, and the annual race is the chance to show off their work.


08/27/15 1:00pm

Brooklyn Bridge, postcard 3

Here’s an updated look at the most important thing to happen in Brooklyn since Henry Hudson landed at Coney Island. Many people call it “The Great Mistake.” Was it?

With Brooklyn’s much-hyped status as the hippest place on Earth comes some nostalgic feelings about “The Great Mistake,” as many called the consolidation of New York City. On that fateful day, January 1, 1898, Brooklyn the city disappeared, and Brooklyn the “outer borough” was born. (As were the Bronx, Queens and Staten Island.)

The decision to join all of the counties surrounding Manhattan into one central city was not made easily, quickly or lightly. Politicians, businessmen, city fathers and ordinary citizens argued and lobbied for or against this for almost 20 years.

Consolidating New York City took a tremendous amount of money and power, along with the consideration of business interests, tax revenues, city bureaucracies, social issues and civic identity. Some people thought it was inevitable and progressive — but for others it was the end of the world as they knew it, the Death of Brooklyn. (more…)

08/27/15 12:00pm


The condo at hand is a two-bedroom number in a five-year-old, three-unit building at 481 18th Street in the South Slope. Modern and minimalist, it’s on the market for $1,080,000, listed by Stribling brokers Dena Driver and Julie Greenspon.

To lead with the negative, that address overlooks the Prospect Expressway. If you want to look on the bright side that means no houses blocking light across the street, but you’d better be okay with the sights and sounds of high-speed traffic.

The place itself is cool and clean-lined, with some interesting finishes, beginning with the mod, angular concrete facade. It’s got two bedrooms and two baths in the rear (i.e., away from traffic noise), with a small balcony off one of the bedrooms. (more…)

08/27/15 11:30am

Greenpoint Development Site

Investor Joseph Brunner closed Tuesday on an $18,000,000 deal in Greenpoint, The Real Deal reported. The seven-building development site includes 1050-66 Manhattan Avenue and 154 Eagle Street, totaling 57,000 square feet of buildable space.

Brunner plans to develop the site into a mixed-use rental building, according to The Real Deal. If that’s the case, the current 57,000 square feet of buildable space could increase to 74,000 square feet if he participates in the city’s inclusionary housing program. (more…)

08/27/15 11:00am


Along with artisanal beer and chocolate, Brooklyn has become an epicenter of small-batch furniture making. Design studios and woodworkers are tucked away in warehouses from Dumbo to Gowanus to — in the case of Wüd Furniture Design — Crown Heights.

There, in an old industrial building recently updated to accommodate small niche factories, Wüd produces robust, clean-lined furnishings using distinctive materials and technologies of its own devising.

Wüd got its start at the first Brooklyn Designs show in 2003. The company’s founder, Corey Springer, showed one of his earliest prototypes there: a coffee table whose top was clad in scraps of lead.

“A client loved the aesthetic and wanted to use it in his brownstone, but he was concerned about safety,” recalled Springer, who has a sculpture degree from UMass. “He said, ‘If you can find a way to make this table usable, I’ll commission one.'”