Last week an LLC called Buffalo Avenue Realty Associates picked up St. Mary’s Hospital at 170 Buffalo Avenue in the Weeksville neighborhood of Crown Heights for $19,500,000. The large private Catholic institution closed in 2005.
Surprisingly, it will not be converted into rentals or condos. The new owner has already leased the building to Prospect Park Nursing Home of 1455 Coney Island Avenue for $1,500,000 for 15 years, according to a tipster. It is around the corner from the Weeksville Heritage Center.
A group of artists are transforming a large parking garage on Dean Street between Grand and Classon into a performance space that will feature a restaurant, bar, art gallery and a large backyard, as DNAinfo was the first to report. Their venture, Global Square, will host concerts, dance performances, movie nights and art shows at 893-897 Dean Street, said managing director Charles McMickens. McMickens, who was the driving force behind The General Greene, Heritage Wines and Fort Grace Local, presented the group’s plan to Community Board Eight’s liquor review committee on Monday night.
The 7,500-square-foot space will include bleacher-style seating that can be easily folded away, a smaller gallery that could host art shows and intimate dance performances, and indoor seating for 100 to 110 people. The backyard has standing room for up to 300 people. The restaurant plans to serve pizza baked in ovens bought from the now-shuttered Pulino’s on Bowery and Houston.
McMickens and the other organizers, including artists Hassan Christopher, Šara Stranovsky, Kyla Ernst-Alper and Sydney Freggiaro, said they hope to make the space more than a typical concert venue, with space where artists can collaborate, rehearse and create a community.
The community board raised several concerns about Global Square’s plans, including parking, noise and crowds. McMickens, who hasn’t yet submitted a liquor application, emphasized his desire to work with the community board throughout the liquor license process. Global Square hopes to open this September and operate from 3 pm to 2 am seven days a week.
Charity in post-Civil War Brooklyn was as segregated as the society at large. When it came to the large institutions that were built to help the orphaned or the elderly, they were all geared to helping just one group of people, keeping everyone separate. The Jewish orphans went to the Jewish Orphan Home; the Methodist elderly went to the Methodist Home for the Aged. The Catholics, Baptists, Swedes, Irish, males and females all had their services and institutions carefully divided to serve members of their own groups. It was just The Way It Was Done. And of course, it goes without saying that the Negroes had their own separate institutions as well.
There was a Home for Colored Aged, as well as the Howard Colored Orphan Asylum. Both were in what is now Crown Heights and unlike many charitable institutions for black folks, they were not just set up and run by well-meaning rich white philanthropists or charities, without African American input. Both of these institutions were run by and for African Americans themselves. Not surprisingly, they both came out of the town of Weeksville.
Weeksville was a successful black middle class town established by James Weeks, a black longshoreman. The town was built on land Weeks had purchased from a black man named Henry C. Thompson, who had, in turn, bought the land from the estate of Lefferts Lefferts. Much of Brooklyn’s black population was living in the Downtown/Dumbo area by the late 1830s, early 1840s. Many there were seeking to find a home where racism and segregation would not stop their advancement in education, jobs, or even a place to worship. If white society wouldn’t give them opportunities, then they were determined to build somewhere where they could determine their own destinies. Weeksville gave them that chance.
Today, Weeksville is known only for the small surviving enclave of houses that make up the Weeksville Heritage Center, but the town was much larger than that, and made up a large part of the eastern part of Crown Heights. Here the residents built homes, businesses, stores, churches, a school, established a newspaper, and founded charitable institutions to take care of the youngest and oldest amongst them. The Howard Colored Orphan Asylum was one of those institutions. It once stood at 1550 Dean Street, on the corner of Dean Street and Troy Avenue. (more…)
A well-known photographer has purchased 10,000 square feet of vacant property at 977 Pacific Street in Crown Heights and plans to build a photography studio on the site, according to a broker involved in the deal. The photographer, whose identity was not disclosed, closed on the five lots at Pacific and Grand Streets yesterday for $1,900,000.
He plans to build a two-story photo studio there, but did not say if he plans to live in it. Halstead was marketing the development sites, which consisted of 977, 979, 983, and 985 Pacific Street, as well as 505 Grand Avenue, for $2,000,000.
Name: Park Place Station, Franklin Avenue Shuttle Address: 605 Park Place Cross Streets: Franklin and Classon Avenues Neighborhood: Crown Heights North Year Built: Original station-1900, rebuilt 1906. This station-1999 Architectural Style: Vaguely Mission style Architect: Unknown MTA architects; railings and gates by Isha Shabaka Landmarked: No
The story: The history of our subway system has always fascinated me. I’m certainly not the only one; there are clubs, chat rooms, websites, books, tours and other materials associated with the subways out there. There are thousands of subway and train aficionados all over the world who love the NYC subway. Many of these people have spent years finding out and cataloguing all kinds of trivia and minutia about our train system. Some are so dedicated they can tell you what kind of bolt is holding down the track in front of you, when it was made, who made it, and some of them can probably tell you who drove the bolt into the ground, too. The subway, like Star Trek, has that kind of fan base.
The Franklin Avenue Shuttle is a favorite of subway buffs, and for good reason. First of all it’s old, and predates the entire subway system. The original tracks here were the end of the line for the old Brooklyn, Flatbush and Coney Island Railroad, which ran along here in 1878. It enabled passengers on that line to transfer to the LIRR train at Bedford and Atlantic Avenue, and vice versa. At the time, the train ran on the surface between Franklin Avenue and Park Place, and then dipped into an open cut to connect to the rest of the line at Park Place. (more…)
This gut renovated three-bedroom, 1.5-bath pad in Crown Heights would work well for roommates. The kitchen isn’t huge, but it has a dishwasher and “open breakfast bar,” which is evidently the opening to the living room.
And the living room is separate from the kitchen, a layout that is slowly disappearing in the cheaper gut renos. There’s also a washer/dryer next to the kitchen. The price is about what you’d expect for this part of the neighborhood, because it’s north of Eastern Parkway and close to all the action on Franklin Avenue. What are your thoughts on it for $2,800 a month?
Tenants of about a dozen buildings in Crown Heights have formed a group to fight gentrification, landlord abuse and rising rents called Crown Heights Tenant Union, Brooklyn Bureau reported. Formed in October, the group recently held a rally outside 1059 Union Street, above, to protest landlords who try to force out longtime tenants to deregulate apartments and raise rents.
“When long term tenants move out, landlords have been gutting the apartments to deregulate the rents,” said the story. “At the same time the long term residents are not getting repairs in their units.”
The group was created with the assistance of the Pratt Area Community Council and the Urban Homesteading Assistance Board, or UHAB. The union has a list of demands, “including a five-year rent freeze, timely repairs, a right to organize and a right to fair leases.”
“They’re beautifying the neighborhood,” the story quoted a long-term resident as saying. “I’ve been here for 36 years. I want to enjoy that also.”
Covenhoven beer bar opened Sunday next to the old Chavela’s spot on Classon Avenue, bringing a wide selection of craft beers and a touch of local history to western Crown Heights. The tap room at 730 Classon Avenue borrows its name from a family farm that extended from the corner at Park Place up to Atlantic Avenue and Grand Avenue.
The bar has sixteen beers on tap, with an emphasis on New York City and regional brewers, in addition to an extensive collection of bottled beers. For now the food is limited to pretzels from Pelzers, a Philly-style pretzel shop a few blocks over on Sterling Place, but owners Bill and Molly Bradford plan on expanding the food menu in the near future.
On Monday, Brookland Capital filed a new building application for a seven-story apartment building on the site of this two-story brick townhouse. Plans at 807 Washington, located between Lincoln Place and Eastern Parkway, call for seven units spread across 10,381 square feet.
As with many Brookland developments, the architects are Issac and Stern. Under an LLC, Brookland Capital bought the 25-by-100-foot property on January 27 for $1,750,000, public records show (a thread on Brooklynian noted Brookland had purchased it). Demolition permits haven’t been filed for the townhouse, which was built around 1910, according to city records. GMAP
Anti-gun violence nonprofit Save Our Streets Crown Heights is hosting a happy hour fundraiser tonight at Catfish on Bedford Avenue. The community-based effort to end gun violence in Crown Heights will sell $5 tickets at the door, which can be traded for a po’ boy sandwich, cocktails or draft beer. Proceeds will benefit youth development program Youth Organizing to Save Our Streets. The fundraiser will happen from 6 to 9 pm tonight at 1433 Bedford Avenue between Prospect and Park places.
The designer of Freemans, F.S.C. Barbershop and Peels has set up shop in Crown Heights at 983B Dean Street. Taavo Somer’s Friends & Family design and creative agency opened in a 7,500-square-foot space in this commercial building six months ago and recently added wood and metal working shops there in addition to its office space. The design shop is directly across the street from 1000 Dean. GMAP
Wow, the camera sure loves this freshly renovated condo at 225 Eastern Parkway. The 2,028-square-foot apartment has three bedrooms and two bathrooms as well as a breakfast nook. The main living/dining space is also unusually large and there’s lots of light despite being on the second floor. Asking price is $1,750,000. That’s more than $850 a foot in Crown Heights. Impressive if they can get it.