01/26/15 1:30pm

763 carroll street park slope 12015

An Open House Pick in November, this attractive Park Slope brownstone at 763 Carroll Street is still on the market. Inside, scads of original details appear untouched, including what looks like wood work with the original finish, and everything looks to be in tip-top condition.

We like the 1880s fireplace, bold wood work and ironwork, and the sleek modern kitchen with door going out to a deck. There’s also a pier mirror, central air, two wet bars, original shutters, and elaborate built-ins.

Set up as an owner’s triplex over a two-bedroom garden rental, it looks slightly narrow in the floor plan, but PropertyShark has it at 20 feet wide and 4,404 square feet. It’s located close to 7th Avenue and less than two blocks from the park.

Originally asking $4,250,000, the price has dropped to $3,950,000. Is there some catch we don’t know about?

763 Carroll Street [Corcoran] GMAP

01/26/15 10:45am


The old Weinstein hardware store, which had long dominated a prominent corner in Bed Stuy, will be torn down to make way for  – well, not a shiny new building, but a glassy and rusty one. We’re not sure what the materials shown in the construction fence rendering at 420 Tompkins Avenue will be, but it looks like concrete, steel, glass and rusty Corten steel paneling.

The overall effect is a mix of the industrial with the glitzy that would play well in Williamsburg but looks jarring in largely 19th century Bed Stuy and, not surprisingly, already has Bed Stuy residents and preservationists upset, going by the emails and Facebook posts over the past week.

The puzzling lack of retail on the ground floor is a mistake, in our opinion. (more…)


The new housing generated by the de Blasio’s rezoning of East New York will be mostly subsidized, according to new details revealed by the administration Saturday. Other than that, the plan follows the same pattern carved out by Amanda Burden and the Bloomberg administration, as New York YIMBY pointed out: Upzone the avenues, downzone the residential side streets.

That means an upzone for Atlantic Avenue from Sheffield Avenue to Euclid Avenue, with buildings as high as 12 stories. It looks less sweeping than we were expecting, a much smaller area. Surprisingly, a wedge of Ocean Hill is also included.

The area, nestled around Atlantic between Broadway, Eastern Parkway and New York Avenue, will be upzoned and downzoned on a block-by-block basis, with affordable housing up to 12 stories going in along Broadway but downzoning planned for several blocks of low-density, 19th century houses between Herkimer and Atlantic. Interestingly, no rezoning for the manufacturing areas is planned, according to YIMBY.

Click here to see the map in more detail.

We’re wondering which particular projects and developers will benefit from the plan, but so far it looks good to us. What do you think of it?

De Blasio Administration Unveils Details of East New York Plan [NYY]

01/26/15 9:00am


Batten down the hatches. A “crippling” and “potentially historic” blizzard, to quote news reports, has already started. (Will it eclipse the blizzard of 1888, we wonder? That one dropped three feet of snow officially, although pictures show drifts over people’s heads and up to parlor floors in places.)

Today’s blizzard has already been downgraded from three feet to two feet, but the mayor says subways could close by 3 pm and the subways look likely to stay open this afternoon, though Cuomo has warned public transportation shutdowns could start earlier than anticipated. Transit officials will update at 1 pm.

We’re wondering if Community Board 9 will postpone its meeting to reword the request for a zoning study tonight, a meeting everyone has been waiting for. Tonight’s Gowanus Canal CAG meeting has been postponed, according to an email we just received from the group.

Are those of you with a commute to work or school thinking of putting in a half day or are you just staying put?

Brooklyn Prepares for Historic, Dangerous Blizzard [Eagle]
Crippling and Potentially Historic Blizzard Targets Brooklyn [News 12]
Brooklyn’s Great White Hurricane [Brownstone Detectives]
Photo from Brooklyn Museum via Brownstone Detectives

01/26/15 8:30am


By Blocking View of the Brooklyn Bridge, a Building Incites a Battle [NY Times]
Evolution for Libraries in Brooklyn [NY Times]
Restoring a Park Slope Wreck [NY Times]
Fort Greene Changes. Chez Oskar Doesn’t [NY Times]
A Year After Suing Their Landlord, Brooklyn Tenants Still Lack Heat [NY Times]
In Bed Stuy, Spotlight Recedes From Site of Fatal Ambush of Two Officers [NY Times]
Anne Hathaway Trades in Hip Brooklyn for Sunny LA [NY Post]
First Look Inside Williamsburg’s New View-Touting Rentals [Curbed]
Bushwick Community Garden Preemptively Fights Development [Curbed]
Photos: Stunningly Restored Kings Theatre Reopens After $95 Million Makeover [Gothamist]
Tenant Groups Protest Tax Abatement Program, Say Causes Gentrification in Brooklyn [Capital NY]
Land Prices Rapidly Increasing Deep Into Bushwick: Permits Filed at 311 Melrose Street [NYY]
13 Secrets of the Brooklyn Museum [amNY]
ULURP Meeting Venue Changed; MTOPP Threatens Yet Another Lawsuit [Q Parkside]
Saraghina’s Restaurant Expands With New Bar in Bed Stuy [DNA]
Storefront Windows in Proposed Cobble Hill Retail Center Must be Smaller, Board Says [DNA]
Community Board 9 to Revamp Proposal to Rezone Prospect Lefferts Gardens [DNA]

01/23/15 2:00pm


French eyeglasses maker Anne & Valentin opened last week at 200 Smith Street in Carroll Gardens, a spokesperson let us know. Its frames, which come in unusual shapes and colors, such as pink metal and two-tone acetate, are made in France.

Smith Street is becoming quite the district for high-end opticians. The store joins a growing number in the area, including James Leonard at 309 Smith Street and Moscot at 159 Court Street. Pardon Me For Asking was the first to write about the new store. GMAP

Photo by Anne & Valentin

01/23/15 10:50am

Check out this New York Times video about Bed Stuy, the first in a new monthly series, “Block by Block,” about what it’s like to live in various New York City neighborhoods. We recognize lots of friends and neighbors in the piece.

It covers a lot of ground, including Bed Stuy’s heritage, beautiful brownstones, distinguished residents such as the late Shirley Chisholm, rapidly escalating rents, crime and Bed Stuy’s family-friendly environment. We recognize Peaches, Scratchbread, Bed Stuy Fish Fry and lots of other local businesses.

Brownstoner commenter and real estate agent and preservationist Morgan Munsey, Georges-Andre Vintage Cafe owner Karine Petitnicolas (aka SuperFrench), and Eduardo Mantelli of Saraghina all have cameos — as do many others. What do you think of it?

Block by Block: Bedford Stuyvesant [NY Times]
Video by New York Times, embedded with permission


Social service agency Brooklyn Community Services has struck a deal with developer Louis V. Greco Jr. to redevelop its downtown Brooklyn headquarters. The plan will add seven stories to the existing seven-story building while preserving its historic facade, according to a press release sent out by the firms and New York City Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen Thursday.

BCS will retain its offices in the form of a condo, and Greco will own the rest, including 106 apartments, some of which will be affordable. How much Greco is paying to buy the property was not revealed, and nothing has hit public records yet. BCS said it will use the proceeds to “serve its broader mission throughout Brooklyn.”

Some aspects of the plan had already leaked out in the form of Building Department filings and a rendering, above, which New York YIMBY published last month. The Wall Street Journal also wrote about the deal Thursday.

YIMBY didn’t like the PTAC units, but on the whole we think the addition looks pretty decent, and won’t be all that noticeable from the street anyway. (Click through to see a photo of the building in 2007.) What do you think of it?

Rendering from Heights Advisors via NYY; photo below by Scott Bintner for PropertyShark


01/23/15 9:00am

The landmarked Brooklyn Lyceum at 227 4th Avenue will become condos. Interestingly, the developer plans to put only two or three luxury units inside the relatively small building — it is 12,200 square feet — but will put up a 12-story rental building next door with as many as 70 apartments, Crain’s reported.

Real estate investment firm Greystone just closed on the Lyceum, which it purchased at auction for $7,600,000 in October, as we reported at the time. It is in the process of buying the empty lot next door at 225 4th Avenue for $13,500,000, Crain’s said.

We had speculated in October the building, a public bathhouse built in 1910, was unlikely to become apartments because there wasn’t enough room for more than a few, unless Landmarks allowed an addition on the roof.

By buying both sites, the developer can transfer about 20,000 square feet of development rights from the Lyceum to the empty lot and build bigger there. Greystone is also planning to restore the exterior of the building.

The developer plans to start construction in the spring and finish early in 2017. Work on the Lyceum will begin whenever Landmarks approves the plans, the firm told Crain’s.

“We’re looking forward to restoring the building,” a Greystone exec told Crain’s. “This is a brownstone neighborhood, so we’re going to try to create something in context with that, inside with the units.”

What do you think of the plans?

Landmarked Brooklyn Lyceum in Park Slope Slated for Condos [Crain's] GMAP
Developer Buys Landmarked Baths on 4th Avenue for $7.6 Million [Brownstoner]

Update: We just received a press release from Greystone, which says 225 4th Avenue will have 68 luxury rentals and 3,500 square feet of stores on the ground floor. Amenities will include a gym, bike storage, and roof deck. RKF is going to be the leasing and sales agent for both buildings.

01/23/15 8:30am


In Cobble Hill, Brooklyn, Quiet, Quaintness and Room for a V.I.P. [NY Times]
Brooklyn Merchants Plead With Council to Limit Movie Shoots [NY Post]
Massey Knakal Hunting for Buyer for Downtown Brooklyn’s Iconic Dime Savings Bank [Eagle]
State Considering Construction of a New Hospital in Brooklyn [Capital NY]
Brooklyn Museum Taps SITU Studio to Redesign Its Entry Pavilion With Interactive Tech [NYO]
Permits Filed: 371 Lincoln Road, Prospect Lefferts Gardens [NYY]
Revealed: 213 Halsey Street, Bed Stuy [NYY]
66 Rockwell Adds Dance Group [Curbed]
Borough Park Developers List Shovel-Ready Site for $38 Million [TRD]
MNS Report: Chelsea, Boerum Hill Lead New Development Sales in Late 2014 [TRD]
Forest City: New Modules at B2 Site Won’t Be Hoisted Until Late Spring [AYR]