02/11/16 11:00am

Park Slope Brooklyn -- Brownstone Interior Design by Ensemble Architecture

Owned by a single family for a century, this Gilded Age townhouse near Prospect Park came into modern times with nearly all its original detail preserved.

That’s not to say the new homeowners didn’t have work to do. First they hired Red Hook-based MADE Architecture to, among other things, design new bathroom layouts as well as a new layout and cabinetry for the garden-level kitchen, and to bring the intact but timeworn woodwork to a high level of polish.

Then in came Ensemble Architecture to choose furnishings and finishes, including floor and wall tiles, light fixtures, countertops, plumbing fixtures, wallpaper and paint colors. The Gowanus-based studio, which was founded in 1998 by Elizabeth Roberts and now comprises 13 architects and designers, recently expanded its interiors department. (more…)

02/11/16 10:00am
Boerum Hill Brooklyn 465 Pacific Street Photo 09

South facade from Pacific Street

While much of the focus in Brooklyn’s development boom has been on the recently rising towers downtown, many medium-sized projects are cropping up in neighborhoods across the borough. One such project — going up at 465 Pacific Street in Boerum Hill — will feature an unusual brick and metal facade. (more…)

02/11/16 9:25am


L train shutdown be damned. One of the most ambitious — and attractive — Brooklyn office developments to come along in decades is betting on reshaping the geography of the city — and where the worker of the future lives, works, and plays — by giving startups a place to flourish in Williamsburg.

But first, the block-long development at 25 Kent Avenue has to go through the lengthy public approval process known as ULURP. (more…)

02/11/16 9:00am
L Train Shutdown

Photo of Levin by emilyshu; photo of L train by Mary Hautman

New details on the much-feared L train tunnel repairs — which would entail shutting down one or both sets of tracks running between Brooklyn and Manhattan — came to light this week at a local community board meeting.

City Council Member Stephen Levin told the crowd that repairs to the tunnel could take two to seven years, according to Gothamist. (more…)

02/11/16 8:30am
Downtown Brooklyn Biker Winter 2016

Downtown Brooklyn. Photo by Mary Hautman

In the News
At Kichin in Williamsburg, Korean Fried Chicken and Mighty Rice Balls [NYT]
Brooklyn Serial Killer Found Guilty [NYP]
Fairway Facing Danger of Possible Bankruptcy [NYP]
De Blasio Signs BID Budget Booster Bill [Eagle]
Bernie Sanders Goes Back to Sheepshead Bay [CBS]
MetroTech District Expanding Reach to Institutions [News12]
Anticipating Development Boom, Simon Baron Buys $24 Million Greenpoint Site [TRD]

Top Brownstoner Stories
Snag Your $563 Studio in a Prime ‘Burg Building — Lottery Opens Wednesday
Park Slopers Reject Plans for Smaller Grocery at Key Food Site, Heckle Developer
Families Making Up to $200,400 Qualify for These Affordable Units in Fort Greene

Toby’s Estate is just one of Brooklyn’s most loved coffee roasters. Watch below to see how the beans are roasted, via Business Insider. (more…)

02/10/16 4:00pm
Flatlands Brooklyn Winter 2016

Flatlands. Photo by Edrei Rodriguez

In the News
Park Slope Author Named Food Co-op’s In-House Obituarist [Patch]
In the Heart of Williamsburg, New York’s Best Wine Is Being Made Right Under Your Nose [BK Mag]
Man Stabbed to Death While Caring for Sick Dog in Brownsville [NYP]
Llama Inn Lights the Way to Peru by Way of Williamsburg [NYT]
Where to Celebrate Chinese New Year in Sunset Park [Eagle]
Why Are There a Few Blocks on Shore Road Without Apartment Buildings? [Hey Ridge]
181 President Street Marketed as “Most Sophisticated” New Carroll Gardens Townhouse [PMFA]

Many Park Slopers — and Brownstoner readers — don’t want to see the Key Food on 5th Avenue be downsized or replaced. One reader can see both sides, though. Read on for his thoughts. (more…)

02/10/16 2:00pm

Neighbors Fence On My Property

In this fence drama case (not the first we’ve seen), a Brownstoner reader has a neighbor’s fence on her property.

bkbenita writes:

I’m renovating my brownstone, so we had a survey done of our property lines. It ends up that my next door neighbor’s (ugly) chain link fence, which separates our two gardens, is about 8″ on my property. We’d like to renovate/landscape our garden, remove her fence, and put up a new wooden one on the correct lines.

My contractor says that we can just give the neighbor notice that we’re doing so, and just go ahead and remove her fence (and offer to replace it with the wooden fence at our own cost). My lawyer says its not worth the fight and that we should just install our fence next to the chain link fence – but then we’re losing precious inches. Would love thoughts from those who have experience in this. Should I go through the DOB?

How should she proceed? Share your thoughts in the original post.

Need a professional opinion? Try Brownstoner Service Pros.


A community meeting on the proposed redevelopment of Park Slope’s 5th Avenue Key Food grocery turned into a public roasting of developer Brian Ezra Tuesday night, with an audience of nearly 400 area locals hissing, booing and laughing at explanations for the financial difficulties in creating a new supermarket to meet local demand. (more…)

02/10/16 12:02pm

Williamsburg Brooklyn House for Sale -- 64 S. 4th Street

This South Williamsburg row house, at 64 South 4th Street, has been written up in both Dwell and Design Sponge, and for good reason. It’s a beaut, gorgeously renovated from top to bottom by Agencie Group architects.

The result is stylish, tasteful and warm, with impeccable rustic-tinged finishes. Features include wide-plank chestnut floors reclaimed from a Virginia barn, tin ceilings, exposed beams, and a glass wall at the rear of the parlor floor. (more…)

02/10/16 10:00am

Brownstoner takes on Brooklyn history in Nabe Names, a series of briefs on the origins and surprising stories of neighborhood nomenclature


Dyker Heights’ 13th Avenue in 1934. Photo via Bowery Boys

An isolated residential nabe, Dyker Heights is known for its large Italian-American population and distance from subway stations.

Despite much of the ‘hood’s relative inaccessibility, Dyker Heights still attracts an outpouring of locals and out-of-towners alike to its renowned Christmas lights display, an annual tradition in which residents deck their mansions in illuminated Santas and snowflakes.

But can you guess how it got its name? (more…)

02/10/16 8:30am
Canarsie Brooklyn Snow Winter 2016

Canarsie. Photo by Edrei Rodriguez

In the News
At Council Hearing on de Blasio’s Housing Plan, Many Voices Rise [NYT]
How to Build a Streetcar That Works [NYT]
Food Pantries in Brooklyn and Beyond Are Low on Money and Need Volunteers [NYDN]
Yearly One-Night Homeless Count Draws Criticism, Defenders [Eagle]
New Details for McDonald’s-Replacing Park Slope Condos [Curbed]
Meadow Partners Files Plans for Williamsburg Office Conversion [TRD]
Fort Greene Groups Want $5M for Fixes at Neighborhood Parks [DNA]

Top Brownstoner Stories
Families Making Up to $200,400 Qualify for These Affordable Units in Fort Greene
6 Home-Inspection Deal Breakers
Snag Your $563 Studio in a Prime ‘Burg Building — Lottery Opens Wednesday

Have you heard about the rainbow bagel? Because it’s causing ’round-the-block lines at a Williamsburg bagel shop. Watch a video of it, below, via Gothamist. (more…)