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Landlords Joel and Aaron Israel were arrested Thursday on criminal charges for allegedly intentionally destroying apartments they own in Greenpoint and Bushwick and lying to the court about it,  the Times and many other outlets reported yesterday. The brothers have been in the news for about two years after reportedly destroying kitchens, baths, gas lines and hot water heaters of longtime tenants at several buildings in Brooklyn to force them out and increase rents to market rate for newcomers.

The cases have been winding through housing court. Criminal charges in such cases are unusual — but then so are the alleged actions of the accused. (more…)

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Arts in Bushwick’s “Making History” pays homage to local artists by featuring exactly 400 of them in a special exhibition at Storefront Ten Eyck. The show will survey the Bushwick arts scene by including diverse artists with studios in Bushwick, who have had studios in Bushwick over the past 10 years, or who have recently participated in Bushwick gallery shows.

The exhibition, which runs from April 19 through May 10, will culminate with a benefit event. Ticket sale proceeds will go towards publishing a book celebrating Arts in Bushwick and commemorating the tenth anniversary of its Bushwick Open Studios.

You can see the full list of artists here. Tickets to the May 10 benefit are $200 and include one piece of work from a local artist. For more information or to buy tickets, go here.

Image by Arts in Bushwick

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The long-empty and neglected Ridgewood Masonic Temple — it’s on Bushwick Avenue in Bushwick, despite the name — is going to become apartments. In January, the developer filed plans for an addition and conversion to 28 apartments at at 1054 Bushwick Avenue, The Brooklyn Eagle reported. Nataliya Donskoy of ND Architecture and Design is the architect of record. (more…)


Windows have gone in at a four-story, three-family building at 18 Jefferson Street in Bushwick. When we last passed by in February, workers were finishing up the brown brick facade and the empty window openings were blocked with plywood. (See below for a photo.)

The architect of record is Jinwoo Jang, according the new-building permit.

The new building replaces a three-story house that had been damaged in a fire, according to a demo permit. Next door at 20 Jefferson Street is an empty lot where construction had not yet started.


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Here’s a freshly gutted three-bedroom close to the L and M trains in Bushwick. The combined kitchen-dining-living area is large, and two of the three bedrooms are reasonably sized as well. There are new stainless steel appliances in the kitchen, although it’s wedged into a rather small space.

At first glance, the rent seems affordable at $2,416 a month. But the brokers are advertising a net effective rent with two months free, which means whoever rents this spot will write checks for the much higher $2,900 a month. It’s no fee.

It’s also right under the elevated track, which could be noisy. We know this part of Bushwick is starting to get pricey, but do you think it’s worth $966 a bedroom?

1446 Myrtle Avenue, #1 [Elliman] GMAP



The long-empty and boarded-up apartment house at 889 Bushwick Avenue — it was built in 1919 and for years has sported a spray-painted “roof off” warning to city workers – is being repaired. When we stopped by Saturday, it looked from the sidewalk as though the interior had been completely gutted.

A permit says the scope of work is “removal and replacement of damaged floor joists, roof joists, and structural stabilization.” It had 24 apartments in the past, and will have 24 apartments again when the work is done.

The owner is David Cohen of Bushwick Realty Holding, which purchased the building and its neighbor at 871 Bushwick Avenue, in April 2014 for $15,000,000. That building, formerly the Menorah Home for Aged and Infirm, is being converted to a “nonprofit/philanthropic” with “sleeping accommodations” for 113 people, according to the alteration permit.

In fact, as far as we can tell, Bushwick Realty Holding purchased the entire block. So more development could be in store for parts of it now used as parking.

The red and white brick building, vaguely neo-Classical, at 889 Bushwick Avenue was designed by architect Louis Berger & Co., according to the Bushwick Wiki. It is part of the proposed Bushwick Avenue Historic District. Click through for more photos.


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We finally have renderings for the ODA-designed project making up one of 10 large buildings in the massive Rheingold Brewery mega-development coming to Bushwick. Like most ODA designs, unsurprisingly, it is a variation on the theme of assemblages of boxes. But we are pretty blown away by the unusual concept for the entire complex, which occupies most of a block. It remains to be seen if the reality will be as good as the renderings, but it is certainly one of the most interesting buildings going up in Brooklyn.

The seven-story, 392-unit project will be topped with a 25,000-square-foot green rooftop. The zigzagging roof will incorporate a running/hiking course, urban farming areas and an outdoor cross-training facility, according to The Real Deal, which was first to publish the renderings. Other amenities include a 19,000-square-foot interior courtyard with a dog run, a fire pit and a mini amphitheater, as well as a climbing wall, coworking spaces, cafe and a gym, The Daily News reported. (more…)

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Here’s a decent looking flip in Bushwick. It appears the circa-1900 yellow-brick Renaissance Revival two-family originally had two identical railroad apartments, and the owners changed up the layout so now there’s an open-plan kitchen-slash-great room in the front with two bedrooms in the back — and goodbye railroad.

Still, we’re thinking this would probably appeal more to an investor than an owner-occupant, since there’s no owner’s duplex. The ask is $1,150,000. Considering the location at the end of Bushwick close to the graveyards, what do you think it’s worth?

126 Moffat Street [Corcoran] GMAP


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Now that spring is almost here, the Municipal Arts Society is organizing tours of three very different Brooklyn areas —Prospect Heights/Atlantic Yards, Bushwick and Bed Stuy. First, preservationist Joe Svehlak will explore historic row houses and churches as well as new developments, like Rheingold Gardens, in Bushwick. The tour will discuss potential landmarks and Bushwick’s history as a German community known for breweries.

Then journalist Norm Oder, who’s behind the Atlantic Yards Report, will explain the politics, design, and decade-long controversy behind the Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park project. He’ll also touch on part of the nearby Prospect Heights Historic District and retail changes in the area.

Lastly our very own Montrose Morris columnist, Suzanne Spellen, will lead a tour of Bedford Stuyvesant with preservationist and real estate agent Morgan Munsey. Attendees will learn about the history and culture of Bed Stuy. Expect a healthy dose of architectural history and insights into buildings designed by some of Brooklyn’s finest 19th and early 20th century architects.

The tour of Bushwick will take place Sunday, March 22 at 11 am, followed by the Atlantic Yards tour at 2 pm. The Bed Stuy tour will happen on Sunday, March 28 at 2 pm. Each tour costs $20 or $15 for MAS members, and tickets can be purchased through the MAS website.

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Here’s a typical gut-renovated two-bedroom on the top floor of a 19th century brick townhouse in Bushwick. Everything is new, including floors, doors, baseboard heating and stainless steel appliances. Both bedrooms seem decently sized, and there’s a reasonable amount of living space.

We think $2,650 a month is pushing it for this location, right on busy Bushwick Avenue and three blocks from the Koscsiuszko Street J train stop. But there’s no broker fee. What do you think of it?

884 Bushwick Avenue, #3 [Elliman] GMAP


It looks like a sizable brick apartment building, but 22-28 Troutman Street, on a prominent corner of Bushwick Avenue near Myrtle, is actually five townhouses on five tax lots with two units each, according to permits. They looked close to complete and we could see workmen finishing up the interiors when we stopped by a few weeks ago.

Each house consists of an upper triplex and a lower duplex, spread across four levels labelled as a basement, two floors and a penthouse. The square footage of each is just under 2,200, which seems improbably small. But permits call them three-story buildings, and that’s what they look like in person.

Owner Pine Realty Corp. of Brooklyn bought the property in 2012 for $900,000, according to public records. The architect is Bahram Tehrani.