04/18/14 4:30pm

Metropolitan Avenue G Train Stop Appears to Be Getting a Touchscreen Kiosk [Brokelyn]
Graffiti Burners in Brooklyn [Animal NY]
Patrick Stewart Wants to Ban Strollers in Park Slope [Intelligencer]
Photo of the Week: Changing Corners of Bed Stuy [Brooklyn Historical Society]
What Will Become of the Huxley Envelope Building in Greenpoint? [Greenpointers]
Every Single Place That’s Ever Been Called the “Next Williamsburg” [Free Williamsburg]

Photo by Juni Safont

04/17/14 4:30pm

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Visiting the Gowanus Canal’s Under-Transformation “Wild West” [Curbed]
EPA Gowanus Canal Community Advisory Group Will Meet Next This Coming Tuesday [PMFA]
Bushwick Artist Turns Brooklyn Street Signs Into Post-Apocalyptic Weapons [Animal NY]
Food Book Fair and Pop-up Bookstore at the Wythe Hotel [Greenpointers]
Two New Tutoring Centers in the Neighborhood [Ditmas Park Corner]
Cool Tree Art on Avenue Y – Anyone Know The Story? [Sheepshead Bites]
Edge Residents Like Kid Stuff But Not Virtual Golf [Brick Underground]

04/16/14 4:30pm

Postcard: Beware the Sea Monster of Gerritsen Beach [Sheepshead Bites]
Bed Stuy Development Site at 265-267 Malcolm X Boulevard Is Asking $3.5 Million [BuzzBuzzHome]
Shuttered Greenpoint Catholic Schools Are Resurrected as Apartment Houses [Brooklyn Eagle]
Coignet Building Will Emerge as White Butterfly After Renovation [Brooklyn Eagle]
Brooklyn Navy Yard to Host Whiskey Tasting, Photography, Performance Art [DNAinfo]
Work on Utica Avenue Line Will Be Completed in Early May, MTA Says [DNAinfo]
Sushi and Noodles Opens on Troutman Avenue [Bushwick Daily]
Before and After: A Greenpoint Roof Deck Transformation [Apartment Therapy]
350 DeGraw Street: The Story Behind a Façade Without a Building [PMFA]
Duane Reade Store in Brooklyn Heights Appears to Be Getting Mega Makeover [BHB]

Photo by Chaya Selzer

04/15/14 4:30pm

Teaser Site out for 210-Unit Greenpoint Development at 1133 Manhattan Avenue [BBH]
The Bergen Tile Building Is Gone [Park Slope Stoop]
See Films by Ditmas Parkers, in Theaters and From the Comfort of Home [Ditmas Park Corner]
Brooklyn Church Fires Being Investigated as Hate Crime, Police Say [DNAinfo]
Get Your Grilled Cheese Fix at The Wheelhouse’s Grand Opening Party Tonight! [Bushwick Daily]
Eight-Story Building Planned for Vacant Lot in Bed Stuy [YIMBY]
Local Barista Tabitha Holbert Making Film [Q at Parkside]
Bishop Ford High School Closing Its Doors in June [South Slope News]
Ugly Dumbo Parks to Become Workout Course [Brooklyn Paper]

Photo by Eugene Gannon

04/14/14 4:30pm

Coming Soon: Shop the Food Book Fair’s Pop-up at the Wythe Hotel [Racked]
Using Data to Defend the Prospect Park West Bike Lane [FiveThirtyEight]
The Church Avenue Street Fair Is Sunday, April 27 [Ditmas Park Corner]
Community Board 11 Approves 16th Avenue Private School Expansion [Bensonhurst Bean]
Sandy-Ravaged T.G.I. Fridays Redesigned, Set to Reopen April 28 [Sheepshead Bites]
Jesa’s Bay Ridge Cool — House Tour [Apartment Therapy]
Can Vision Zero Survive Tabloid Editorial Boards? [Streetsblog]
How the Real Estate Deal Behind 470 Vanderbilt Avenue Came Together [TRD]
Coney Island’s Luna Park Opens for the Season [DNAinfo]

Photo by Juni Safont

04/11/14 4:30pm

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Lace up Those Skates and Get Rolling at Lakeside This Weekend [Ditmas Park Corner]
New Restaurant Coming to 19 Wyckoff Avenue in Bushwick? [BuzzBuzzHome]
New Renderings for Adam America’s Williamsburg Rental at 247 North 7th Street [BuzzBuzzHome]
Market-Savvy Couple Picks up Crown Heights Townhouse for $1,630,000 [NY Observer]
Potential Penthouse Combo at Two Northside Piers Wants $5,200,000 [Curbed]
Lightstone Demo Continues, Now on Bond Street [PMFA]
A Dream Dumbo Weekend: Brunch, Boutiques, and Local Favorites [Racked]
The Society of Old Brooklynites Has Been Kicking Since 1880 [Brooklyn Paper]
Williamsburg Community Board Snubs on-Street Bike Parking [Brooklyn Paper]
Grimaldi’s Pizza Co-Founder Dies at 75 [NBC NY]
Two Stories of Beauty at Henry and Union [Lost City]
“Gratitude Cafe” to Open in the Next Couple Weeks [Q at Parkside]
Cherry Blossoms a Cause for Celebration at Brooklyn Garden [NY1]

04/11/14 9:00am

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We’re sure you’re tired of hearing how expensive Brooklyn is getting, and the last market report out for the quarter only confirms it.

In a kind of good news-bad news scenario, prices per square foot in all of Brooklyn fell in the first quarter compared to the year before, while average prices for townhouses and other homes shot up amazingly in “emerging” Brooklyn — that is, Bed Stuy, Crown Heights, Prospect Lefferts Gardens and Bushwick. The 5 percent decline in average square foot prices (to $635) should be good news for priced-out buyers, but it’s really not.

The reason for the decline, according to the report from Corcoran, is that lack of inventory in the borough’s most expensive neighborhoods has pushed buyers into more affordable ones, such as Sunset Park, East New York and Coney Island.

It was the first drop in nearly two years, The Real Deal reported.

The category of home that is rising in price most quickly is one- to four-family townhouses. “The average price of a single-family townhouse grew to $2.2 million from $1.5 million year-over-year,” said The Real Deal. Median prices for new development also rose, increasing by 15 percent to $875,000.

You haven’t been imagining things: Townhouses in Bed Stuy, Crown Heights, Bushwick, and Prospect Lefferts Gardens saw huge price gains. The average price of a single family townhouse in these areas, which Corcoran now tracks as one submarket, increased 51 percent in the year, to $1,138,000 from $755,000. The average price of a two- to four-family townhouses increased 41 percent, from $760,000 to $1,074,000.

Perhaps because of the low inventory, the market share of northwest Brooklyn declined in the first quarter while areas in southern Brooklyn grew, to 30 percent from 18 percent over the year.

Here is Gawker’s take on the news:

Brooklyn used to be “cool.” Now Brooklyn is expensive and horrible. Here, based on the latest figures out today, is a fun bar trivia game to play: ask someone, “Do you know what the median rent in Brooklyn is?” Then, as they’re thinking about it, ostentatiously empty a container of cyanide into your beer….Nothing screams “a welcoming place of refuge for young people and their artistic youthful energy” like a $2,900 a month median rent.

How do you feel about it?

04/10/14 4:30pm

Firm Picked to Run LICH Paid $95 Million to Settle Medicare Fraud Suit [DNAinfo]
De Blasio’s First 100 Days Speech: Vision Zero Has “Just Begun” [Streetsblog]
Superlative-Packed Nine-Story Condo Building Coming to Ocean Avenue [Sheepshead Bites]
Plant Wall, Speedy Dishwasher Not Enough to Snag $7.6 Million for Cobble Hill Home [Curbed]
Six Brooklyn Bars Where You Can Watch the Final Season of “Mad Men” [Brokelyn]
Feel the Burn: The Bar Method’s Moving Into Cobble Hill [Racked]
Housing Director Tours Coney Island to Assess Post-Sandy Rebuild [Brooklyn Eagle]
Local Thrill Seeker Bummed out Cyclone’s Rotting Wood Got Replaced [Gothamist]
Intox-egg-ated: Grand Street Hosts Boozy Easter Egg Hunt for Adults [Brooklyn Paper]
The “Ultimate Stoner Cupcake” Is Coming to Bedford Avenue [Bedford+Bowery]

Photo by Anthony Fine

04/09/14 4:30pm

Mapping Crown Heights’ Crazy Residential Building Boom [Curbed]
Learn to Forage in New York City at the Food Book Fair Brooklyn [Untapped Cities]
Marketing Boost for Bed Stuy Two-Family: 435 Putnam Avenue [BK to the Fullest]
Elite Gym Is Now Open on Coney Island Avenue [Ditmas Park Corner]
Check out Swoon’s Magnificent Site-Specific Installation at the Brooklyn Museum [Gothamist]
Hare Krishnas List Brooklyn Headquarters for $60 Million [TRD]
One of Gowanus’ Priciest Buildings Comes With No C of O and a Stop Work Order [PMFA]
These Neighborhood Improvement Projects Will Get Participatory Budgeting Funds [KarmaBrooklyn]
Dumbo ReRun Movie Theater Reopens With Horror Flicks and Filmmaker Screenings [DNAinfo]

04/09/14 11:30am
Screenshot of Brooklyn Public Library's new Brooklyn Eagle archives

Screenshot of Brooklyn Public Library’s new Brooklyn Eagle archives

Two important online research resources for historic buildings in Brooklyn have drastically changed in the last few weeks. The Brooklyn Public Library has digitized the complete morgue of the the Brooklyn Eagle, adding 1903 to 1955, when the paper stopped publishing. Previously they had digitized the archive from 1841 to 1902, but never got around to finishing the digitization. It was always frustrating, and forced a search from other sources.

The library has partnered with Newspapers.com to provide researchers with a new way to access the Eagle. It went up last week. I’m not up to snuff with all of the tools it offers, and it’s going to take me a while to get used to it, and I’m going to miss the quirks and foibles of the old system. But if the search function is improved, that will be worth the learning curve. Above is a screen shot of the new format.

Over at the New York Public Library, they are beta testing their new online format for their visual collections, including their maps collection. (more…)

04/09/14 9:00am

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For years people have been wondering who is buying luxury condos and multi-million-dollar townhouses in Brooklyn. Frequently the answer was people who had sold a one- or two-bedroom apartment in Manhattan. But times have changed, and the new buyer in Brooklyn more closely resembles the traditional buyer in Manhattan: Buyers with a household income of $300,000 or more who work in finance, accounting, sales, law or marketing, according to a report from Brooklyn real estate firm Ideal Properties.

“The number of these high-income earners who bought homes in these areas shot up more than 316 percent in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the previous year,” said a story about the report in DNAinfo. “They accounted for 30 percent of the buyers.”

The number of buyers earning between $100,000 and $199,000 accounted for only 1 percent more of buyers, 31 percent. However, even buyers who can afford a given property may find themselves having to settle for something else because buyers with bigger assets or who can pay all cash have the edge, according to DNAinfo.

Interestingly, almost 25 percent of buyers in the first quarter were self employed, with the vast majority (74 percent) of those identifying as principals or owners of their own companies. This was a 16 percent increase from the fourth quarter and a 45 percent increase from the year earlier.

Slightly under half of all purchases were made by couples; singles accounted for 40 percent of buys.

Most buyers — 39 percent — already lived in Brooklyn. Seventeen percent came from Manhattan, 9 percent from California, and 12 percent from outside the U.S.

The numbers are based on information submitted to Ideal Properties Group from buyers. The area studied is the North and Northwest sections of Brooklyn only. Areas such as Bed Stuy, Crown Heights, PLG and Bay Ridge were not included.

Profile of Home Buyers in Brooklyn Q1 Report [Ideal Properties]