The Brooklyn Book Fest is descending on the park behind Borough Hall in Downtown Brooklyn this Sunday, and it’s bringing a full slate of Bookend events throughout the borough every night this week. Literary discussions and events on everything from comic books to parenting will take place from 10 am to 5 pm on Sunday. The slate of speakers includes Zadie Smith, James McBride, Jonathan Lethem, Joyce Carol Oates and Salman Rushdie. Check out the full list of Sunday’s festival events and Bookend events happening throughout the week.
Name: Congregation Sons of Israel Address: 2115 Benson Avenue Cross Streets: Corner 21st Avenue Neighborhood: Bensonhurst Year Built: 1918 Architectural Style: Neo-Classical Architect: Emery Roth Other Buildings by Architect: In Manhattan-El Dorado, Beresford, San Remo, Ardsley and Normandy Apartment buildings, among many others. In Brooklyn-1930s tower wing of St. George Hotel Landmarked: No
The story: Bath Beach’s Congregation Sons of Israel was founded in 1896, by 60 Orthodox Jewish families who had settled in southern Brooklyn to build a community and family. They first met in rented spaces for services, and sometimes at members’ homes. Funds were immediately raised for their own worship space, and a year later, the cornerstone of a new synagogue was laid. The first Congregation Sons of Israel was located at Bay 22nd Street, near 86th and Benson Avenues. Even though the building was not totally completed, they had a roof over their head and enough done to welcome in the Jewish New Year with Rosh Hashanah services in 1898. (more…)
A sign in the window at 380 Union Avenue says Metropolitan Dental Arts will be opening there soon. “Accepting most insurances,” it says promisingly. The retail space is in a condo building whose address is 1 Powers Street. In our experience, parts of northeast Brooklyn could use more dentists, so we’re pleased to see it. GMAP
We’re in the thick of the prime fall real estate selling season, so today we’ve got another spectacular beauty, 61 Midwood Street in Prospect Lefferts Gardens. This late Victorian has an unusual (and very attractive) facade whose geometry seems to anticipate Edwardian styles to come.
Inside is a classic Midwood Street interior with tons of unpainted wood work, leaded glass, wood fireplaces, the original passthrough sinks, original paneling and built-ins in the dining room, two butler’s pantries (with a working dumbwaiter), the original ice box, and a nearly original floor plan. The kitchen has been very nicely updated, with a commercial style stove inside the gray brick fireplace.
What do you think of it and the asking price of $2,195,000?
This new-construction condo looks a little McMansion-y, but it comes with the Red Hook discount. The three-bedroom, two-bath condo clocks in at 1,296 square feet and also has a reasonable amount of outdoor space, including a narrow side garden and a front patio. The living, dining and kitchen are one big space, but it doesn’t look crowded. Since this is Red Hook, it’s a mile from the closest subway stop at Smith and 9th streets. Asking price is $849,000, or $655 a square foot, along with $288 in monthly maintenance.
This sprawling lower duplex in a Bed Stuy brownstone has been completely gut renovated but offers tons of living space for a family or roommates. The new kitchen has stainless steel appliances and a dishwasher. The 1,550-square-foot pad also comes with a private backyard and a washer/dryer on the lower floor. Do you think the rent of $3,500 a month is a stretch for this part of Bed Stuy?
Contracts have been signed at seven of the eight condos at 440 Atlantic Avenue in Boerum Hill, which are still under construction after hitting the market five months ago. Developer and architect Alex Barrett, of Barrett Design and Development, sent us these photos of Unit 3A, a two-bedroom, two-bath asking $1,300,000 and the only apartment still left on the market. A business has also signed a contract for the ground floor commercial space, but we don’t know who it is yet. Construction began last year on the six-story building, which replaced two decaying townhouses, and is expected to finish by the end of the year.
The modern and industrial condos are made out of cast-in-place concrete over steel deck, and feature wide plank white oak floors, powder-coated steel cabinetry and private basement storage. Click through to see more construction shots.
On January 1, 1898, Brooklyn woke up to a new world in which it was no longer the master of its own destiny. It was now part of Greater New York City, where the seats of City power rested on the streets and in the buildings of Lower Manhattan, not at Brooklyn’s City Hall or in the office and bank buildings of Court Street. It’s hard to imagine what that may have been like. The closest analogy may be that it felt like Brooklyn had been conquered by another nation. All aspects of city life were different after January 1st, and in the coming months, it got a lot worse before it got better.
Take the police, for example. Since they were charged with maintaining order, stopping crime and apprehending criminals, all very important tasks, you’d think those in charge would have spent a lot of time planning for the re-organization of the police force, so that the transition of power and command would be swift and efficient. Yeah, you’d think… (more…)
Nine-year residents of Cobble Hill and ex-Housewives of New York stars Alex McCord and Simon van Kempen are selling their townhouse at 56 Butler Street and moving to Australia “to be with family,” a spokeswoman for Stribling & Associates, which is handling the sale, told us.
Longtime readers will remember Simon, a Brownstoner commenter, and Alex from Brownstoner parties and this story about their renovation. The three-family, six bedroom house is asking $2,695,000. (If you are curious, they paid $1,275,000 in 2005.) The living room is still painted its controversial shade of red!
We debated whether to ignore or call out The Post’s story on crime in Bed Stuy and Bushwick, which reads like something written by an Internet troll circa 2008. It even has the requisite gentrifier who says “More people like me are moving in and changing the neighborhood. So that’s comforting.” Newsflash: Violent crime is less than half what it was in the early ’90s, thanks to the efforts of people who have been living here all along, including community boards and Neighborhood Watch groups.
Bed Stuy does have a problem with young black men shooting each other, and it’s horrifying and needs to stop — as people in the community recognize all too well. That’s entirely different from saying white gentrifiers will be preyed on by black bogeymen, which is the implication of the story — but not supported by facts.
“There has also been an uptick in burglaries and muggings targeting the gentrifiers who move in,” said the story, but it did not give any evidence to support that. Crime is down across the board. In the 81st Precinct, for example, which covers part of Bed Stuy, violent crime to date this year is down in every category, including burglary and felonious assault, except rape.
We hope violent crime will continue to decrease, including rape, for the sake of everyone who lives here, not just the newcomers.
The Dutch-designed, Chinese-developed Oosten condos debuted at 429 Kent Avenue in south Williamsburg this week, with one-bedrooms starting at $710,000. Halstead has 26 listings live for the block-long complex at South 8th and Kent , including four that were listed earlier this month and have already entered contract.
One-bedrooms range in price from $710,000 to $1,050,000; two-bedroom, two-bath units start at $1,185,000; and two three-bedroom, 3.5-bath duplexes are asking $2,660,000 and $2,770,000. There are also two large floor-through lofts with three bedrooms and 3.5 baths each priced at $3,470,000 and $3,620,000, and three four-bedroom, 3.5-bath townhouses priced from $3,375,000 to $3,635,000.
Designed by Piet Boon and WASA Studio, the development offers the full gamut of luxury amenities, including a children’s playroom, a rooftop reflecting pool and roof deck, swimming pool and parking. XIN Development Group, the American branch of Chinese developer Xinyuan Real Estate Company, is behind the 216-unit project.
These look miles better than the average Williamsburg development to us. What do you think of the design and pricing? More interior renderings after the jump!