Park Slope Brooklyn History 1915 Edward Reiss

Edward Reiss was a larger-than-life Brooklyn character in the early 20th century who often took matters into his own hands when a situation wasn’t to his liking. Our story today concerns his use of a racist power play to get his way in a feud with a developer.

Reiss was the owner of the Marine Wrecking Company, a very successful salvage company that plied the waters around New York City and the surrounding states, towing in damaged and abandoned craft, and salvaging underwater wrecks.

His name was frequently in the papers after 1910 for his yachting activities. A member of the Park Slope Civic Association, he was one of the Slope’s most aggressive and ardent boosters. When his plans to erect a statue in the area didn’t come to fruition, he was disappointed, but by 1915 he had more immediate problems. A developer was building a six-story apartment building right next door to him.

Edward Reiss and His Neighborhood

Reiss and his wife Jennie lived on the upper edges of Park Slope, in a rather modest row house at 461 15th Street. They were the first owners of this house, which was the lead in a group of four two-family houses built by architect Benjamin F. Hudson and developer Morris Levy in 1909.

The papers referred to the house as a “mansion in a highly desirable neighborhood,” which suggests Reiss may have made some serious upgrades to the home. But after four years of domestic bliss, the building became ground zero for a major feud. (more…)

Park Slope Brooklyn 515 4 Ave PS 124

Brooklyn, one building at a time.

Last week we featured some of the great C.B.J. Snyder’s Brooklyn schools. There are a lot of them, and here’s one more great addition to the Brooklyn streetscape.

Name: Public School 124, Silas B. Dutcher School
Address: 515 4th Avenue
Cross Streets: 13th and 14th Street
Neighborhood: Park Slope
Year Built: 1899-1900
Architectural Style: Beaux-Arts
Landmarked: No

This beautiful Beaux-Arts-style elementary school is just one many built by C.B.J. Snyder, the Supervisor of School Buildings for the City of New York. It one of his earliest Brooklyn schools, planned a year after Brooklyn became part of Greater New York City in 1898.

As we posted last week, Snyder revolutionized school building with his H-shaped schools. This is not one of them; instead it’s a massive old-style rectangular school, built on a block-wide lot with lots of room around it for maximum use of windows on all four sides.

Snyder was well aware of the impact a handsome, well-built school had on a community. The 1893 Chicago World’s Exhibition had introduced the nation to the Beaux-Arts style — an ornate, classically inspired French Baroque style that lent itself well to public buildings of all kinds. (more…)

a taste of fifth

Forty of Park Slope’s best bars and restaurants will once again set up shop tomorrow at Grand Prospect Hall for A Taste of Fifth, which benefits 15 neighborhood charities. Participating restaurants include Stone Park Café, Taco Santo, Luke’s Lobster, Bricolage, Grand Central Oyster Bar Brooklyn, Beygl, Jakes’s Handcrafted, Bogota Latin Bistro, Freddy’s Bar, M & S Prime Meats and The Chocolate Room. (more…)

513 4th street 1

This notable Romansque Revival beauty has a broker and has come down in price since it was listed for sale by owner in September. The anchor end house in a row designed by architect/builders Allan Brothers in 1892, the exterior is particularly striking, with its unusual turret bay with polygonal roof and finial, Mediterranean tile roofing, balcony and elaborate carved details.

It was a Building of the Day in 2010. Inside there are all sorts of original details as well as a renovated kitchen, baths and ipe wood deck. It’s configured as a triplex over a garden-floor rental.

It was previously asking $4,650,000. Now the new ask is $3,995,000. What do you think of it?

513 4th Street [Brooklyn Heights Real Estate] GMAP


438 12th street park slope 32015

The finishes at this Ansonia condo feel pretty generic but the three-bedroom pad has a good layout, generous proportions and views to die for. In addition to 1,600 square feet of living space, there’s a small private balcony. The asking price is $2,195,000, which comes out to over $1,350 a foot.

438 12th Street, #5C [Halstead] GMAP

470 4th avenue park slope 1 22015

Excavation is under way at 470 4th Avenue in Gowanus, where a 12-story building will eventually rise. The Aufgang Architect-designed project will bring 105 apartments and 5,000 square feet of commercial space to the corner of 4th Avenue and 11th Street, according to permits approved this month.

It looks like the development also has a new or alternate address at 237 11th Street. The 84,000-square-foot building will have ground floor retail, a courtyard, a medical office, a gym and 29 cellar parking spots, per Schedule A filings.

Developers Adam America, Slate and the Naveh Shuster Group paid JBS Project Management $20,000,000 for six 19th century wood frame houses and three small commercial buildings on the corner last year, and demolished them last summer. Click through to see another construction photo and the rendering posted on the fence.

470 4th Avenue Coverage [Brownstoner] GMAP


806 president street park slope 22015

This Park Slope brownstone at 806 President Street has been gut renovated and just hit the market with rents from $2,450 a month. While the interiors don’t look anything like a typical brownstone — we don’t see any original detail, for example — we think they look much better than typical new construction.

The brick has been exposed on the chimneys and the kitchens and bathrooms are a little more interesting than most, with green cabinetry and white subway tile and, in the bathrooms, what appears to be patterned cement tile on the side of the tub. Some of the rooms aren’t white, either — is that pale-gray paint we see on the walls, above?

Pricing for the eight rentals ranges from $2,450 for a studio or one-bedroom to $2,600 for a two-bedroom simplex (three rooms) or $5,100 for a two-bedroom duplex (four rooms) with private garden. There’s also a common roof deck.

We don’t see any floor plans, so we’re not sure how big the units are. Click through to see more interior photos. What do you think of the finishes and pricing?

806 President Street [] GMAP


250 garfield place park slope 22015

CWB Architects opened up this 1891 Romanesque Revival-style brownstone at 250 Garfield Place with a double-height glass solarium that spans the garden and parlor floors and features a wood burning stove. The kitchen, which overlooks it, is modern in feeling, with a wall of white subway tile, a dramatic and custom made hand-forged brass hood, a Lacanche stove, and honed Carrara marble counters.

Most of the details in the formal parlor rooms are still there, although the wide-plank floors throughout appear to be new. The upstairs bedrooms floors are also modern in style, and the en suite bathrooms have Waterworks fixtures and Ann Sacks tiles. There is a guest suite on the garden floor and a dog kennel and exercise room in the cellar. All the mechanicals are new, and include central air.

The two-family house is part of a row of five designed by architect Helmer Westoen, according to the listing. A House of the Day in 2011, it is about 4,200 square feet and last sold for $2,600,000 in 2012.

We are sure no expense was spared in the renovation. But considering even bigger top-of-the-line brownstones in the area rarely sell above $5,000,000, do you think they will get their ask of $7,500,000?

250 Garfield Place [Brown Harris Stevens] GMAP
House of the Day: 250 Garfield Place [Brownstoner]

275 4th avenue park slope 22015

Excavation has begun at the corner of 4th Avenue and 1st Street in Park Slope, where ODA Architecture’s stepped 11-story rental building will eventually rise. This is the prominent corner where a McDonalds was located. It was demolished last year.

As already reported, the Adam America and Slate Property Group-developed project at 275 4th Avenue will have 78 apartments spread across 60,188 square feet, in addition to 4,476 square feet of commercial space and 300 square feet of community space. Amenities at the luxury rental building will include a part-time doorman, tenant lounge, private gym, roof deck and personal storage space.

Click through to see the rendering, which we published at the end of 2013. 

A McDonald’s on 4th Avenue Will Become This 11-Story Building [Brownstoner] GMAP


acme hall storefront 435 9th street park slope 22015

Two longtime musicians Saturday opened a recording studio and music education space at 435 9th Street, on the corner of 7th Avenue in Park Slope, next to Brooklyn Industries. Acme Hall offers lessons in drums, bass, guitar, voice, ukulele and piano, and specialized group workshops with five people or less.

There’s also a fully outfitted recording studio available for bookings. The name was inspired by the building, which was called Acme Hall when it opened as a social club in 1890, according to music studio co-owner Rebecca Pronsky. GMAP

Photo by Acme Hall

920 president street park slope 12015

It’s been a while since we’ve seen a prime Park Slope brownstone with all the trimmings, and 920 President Street is massive and lavish and on a park block. One of a row of 14, the Neo-Grec/Romanesque Revival house was built in 1899 by architect and developer Patrick Sheridan, according to the designation report.

It has every over-the-top high-Victorian detail of the period, including a grand entry, two staircases, insane amounts of wood work, and elaborate built-ins. In addition to the usual parlors, there is a library, an original bathroom (with corner marble sink, hex porcelain tiles, stained glass window and claw foot bath), an original sink in one of the passthroughs, and wood mantels with colorful original tile.

The floor plan shows a triplex over a duplex duplex over a triplex, with the owner’s kitchen located in the extension on the parlor floor and bedrooms on the garden floor. The kitchen isn’t pictured, except for a glimpse through a door and on the floor plan; it looks a little skimpy but nice, and the room has stained glass windows and other original details. We spy a few missing tiles in the original bathroom, but nothing that wouldn’t be easy to fix. The triplex’s kitchen is located on the hidden fifth floor, which has been opened up.

The house appears to have been in the same family since at least 1969. Do you think they will get their ask of $4,999,995?

920 President Street [Corcoran] GMAP