Development Watch: RIP, Albee Square Mall (Garage)

albee-square-rendering-0107.jpgThe end of the year coincided with the end of the Albee Square Mall’s 31-year life. Built in 1977 on the site of the former Albee Square Theater, the mall’s popularity (See, to me this mall is like number one, and any other shoppers that try to compare—there ain’t no way they could hang out with Albee Square, sang Biz Markie) was ultimately no match for the march of real estate progress down Flatbush Avenue. The new mixed-use development rising on the site (rendered at right) will have 650 units of residential space in addition to 475,000 square feet of retail and more than 100,000 square feet of Class A office space. Sounds like a party.
Development Watch: Acadia Starts Albee Demo [Brownstoner] GMAP
Albee Square Deal Closes, Fewer Apartments Planned [Brownstoner]

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  • Gabby – now you are being nostalgic for ALBEE SQ MALL????

    What credibility can you or this website have in its commentary when EVERY change is attacked and criticized with snarky commentary.

    The Albee Sq Mall was a dump and a failure and its replacement with new retail – mixed income housing AND OFFICE SPACE is a net positive to anyone accept a moronic Luddite

  • This was hardly a condemnation of Acadia’s plans…just a light-hearted way to work in a Biz Markie reference. Anyone who’s been paying attention knows we’ve been very much in favor of the building boom that’s going on along this stretch of Flatbush.

  • Sorry Brownstoner but if this post was ment to be in “favor of the building boom” then you better edit your posts more carefully

    Your site is well known for its snarky sarcasm and comments like “Sounds like a party.” calling the Albee Sq Mall “popular” as well as the Biz Markie lines certainly would strike any regular reader of this blog as the typical anti-change agenda commentary for which you are famous.

  • @ 12:12 PM: “mixed income housing AND OFFICE SPACE is a net positive to anyone accept a moronic Luddite”

    The word’s “except”, pal.

  • 12:26 PM: Calling a popular mall popular is indicative of an agenda now?

  • 12:26 – When the mall wasn’t popular by any reasonable definition (sales, traffic, rent, etc….) = Yes

  • Albee Square Mall was also name-checked by Jay-Z in Hello Brooklyn 2.0 – “Iller than Albee Square Mall back in the 9-0.”

    The mall really fell off in the past few years. It was poorly maintained and the Toys-R-Us was a mess. The new Rainbow on Fulton is bigger and better than the one that was in the mall. I already miss the Forever 21 though. I guess I have to admit I feel a little nostalgic for Albee even if it was kind of dingy.

  • I wouldn’t throw the term “moron” around, 12:12. Because only a dimwitted fucktard would confuse “accept” for “except.” Dimwitted fucktard.

  • From my experience, the multiple vendors there, as well as electronic/shoe shops, etc. were very popular. If not for competition fro moutside Fulton Mall, it’d have been even more so. The “main” stores were ill conceived from the start. They simply weren’t what the main customers there wanted.

    But of course, the new stores they plan to add there won’t be popular amongst the current demographic either. So I guess we should scrap the plans?

  • RIP is a good word for this garage. Interesting shot, but it’s misleading because it makes it look like the whole Albee Sq is all gone. The galeria building is still there in all its uselessness and drab. Good riddance to all the eyesore that made the corner a dangerous crosswalk for one thing. Do you know that cops turn a blind eye on motorists who make constant illegal turns along Flatbush extension?

  • 12:45 – sorry for the wrong word usage although I must ask- what is missing in your life that you have time to proofread blog postings and use the word “fucktard”

  • I moved here when they were finishing up the mall, so I never saw the original Albee Theatre. I heard it was very cool. Too bad they replaced it with this 70’s idea of an urban mall. It was one of the highlights of the “New Fulton Street”, coinciding with the closing of Fulton to regular traffic and the refurb of the streets, lighting, mall signage, and the idea to make Downtown Fulton St a pedestrial shopping mall.

    This mall never had much going for it beyond having the only indoor food court in the area, the highlight being Wendy’s as its anchor. The stores on the lower level were always dark and depressing, and changed every other month. The shops on the upper 2 levels weren’t much better, and as time went by, the goods got cheaper and cheaper, as the people got fewer and fewer.

    Frankly, it always looked low rent. Interior finishes were cheap, roof probably leaked, escalators and elevators never worked for too long, and downstairs retail always looked like storage rooms that they decided to rent. Toys R Us was probably the only profitable store in the entire place. Even Wendy’s left. They could have done much better. I was always left with the feeling that the developers threw this at the community, which they saw as lower income anyway, and said “Here, we gave you a mall.”

    I won’t miss it.


  • Albee was built when I started at LIU (directly across the street). Although it was definitely a downscale mall, it was a familiar friend right through to grauduation. I distinctly remember a double date at Wendy’s, as well as the day the professor of my “History of Radio” class ended a midterm exam by announcing the space shuttle Challenger had just exploded. We all went over to an electronics store at Albee Square to watch the news coverage. Quite fitting Biz Markie should honor the place with a tune, and thanks Brownstoner for posting.

  • I practically grew up in the Albee Square Mall. Every weekend, my mom would take me to the Barnes & Nobles there and then downstairs to the arcade and Top Potato for lunch. It certainly has sucked since the 90’s, but it was great in the 80’s just like Biz says

  • “Top Potato?” Now we’re talking! Hey, 1:23, it’s anonymous so tell us when you started at LIU.

    Gabba, Gabba, hey! We except you, we, except you, one of us!

  • sorry, 1:20, should have said “asshat.” And remember, you played the MORON card, so spare me the whining.

  • I for one will miss the kiosk that did custom embroidery on things. Anyone know where there’s another place like that? Maybe King’s Plaza???

  • By the time I started going there, Barnes and Noble was gone. Where in the mall was it? It took another 25 years for B&N to get back downtown. (Court St.)

    I do remember Top Potato, and had a date at Wendy’s myself, a couple of times, after a movie at the Duffield. Saw “Under the Cherry Moon” there. A strange date movie – ah, youth.


  • “Hey, 1:23, it’s anonymous so tell us when you started at LIU.”

    It was 1977. Journalism major.

  • “It was 1997. Journalism major.”

    WHOOPS! My bad. It was actually 1981. Unfortunately, it was a LONG time ago!

  • Re 12:50: Will the Galeria part be demolished too?

  • Hopefully some real investment on Fulton Street will encourage some more diversity of retail and with 650 new tenants, some real restaurants.

  • I remember going into the mall after shopping along Fulton street just to eat in Top Potato. I also frequented Tamara’s on the 2nd floor where I purchased my first grown-up, got-a-job-on-wall street suit shortly after graduating. Tamara’s sold Jones of New York suits at very reasonable prices and they also sold Bandolino’s and Khaki trench coats to complete the look. The last time I went into albee Square all I saw was hootchie wear and hair for weaving.

  • Now where will the criminals spend their time?

    I miss the 19th century.

  • The destruction of the colonial-era relic Red Hook Lane is next. I don’t mourn ASM though.

    I bought one thing there all-time: in 1979, a 45RPM single:

    Turning Japanese.

  • 12:12PM has it pretty nailed down on the anti-anything by brownstoner and his vast majority of over-the-hill readers. I will bet that most of the casual readers here will leave in a heart beat once they actually saw, face to face, what some of these nimbys looked like, & how old and out of touch and irrelevant they really are.