Brooklyn Heights


Halstead is now marketing two new developments within a block of each other on the Court Street corridor. This in itself would not be big news were it not for the fact that they are both rental buildings as opposed to condos. The 13-story, 50,000-square-foot building nearing completion at 65 Schermerhorn Street (left) will have 64 units, a mix of studios, one bedrooms and “one bedroom plus office” units. (Some readers predicted this would be a rental a year ago.) No word on what the rents will be. With seven three-bedroom apartments spread out over ten floors and monthly rents starting at $8,100, 183 State Street (where, according to an earlier thread, the developer is the former proprietor of the chinese restaurant that used to occupy this site) is going after a significantly ritzier demographic. Do you think the demand will be there? What do you make of the decision of both these developers to go rental from the start?
65 Schermerhorn Street [Schermerhorn Court] GMAP
63 Schermerhorn: How You Lookin’? [Brownstoner]
183 State Street [Halstead] GMAP


File under: Gigantic Bummer. It’s been a rough six months over at 42 Remsen Street. First there was a fire over Thanksgiving weekend forced residents to move out. The cause: Apparently, according to comments on Brooklyn Heights Blog, there’s an older woman who lives on the top floor of the co-op who hoards piles of cardboard and paper in her apartment which was the source of the fire. Fast forward to late March: The top-floor resident was the first to move back into her apartment but before anyone else could return, she started another fire, this one even more damaging than the first. “The family that lives on the ground and parlor floors, who financed the rebuilding of the outside staircase which won them building a Heights Assn award a few years back and had a very, very nice apartment were understandably beside themselves,” according to a commenter named Jo Ann. Any other details about this tragic story? Is there anything co-op members can do to remove a problem resident? GMAP P*Shark


When the sales office at One Brooklyn Bridge Park aka 360 Furman quietly opened on April 4, there was already a list of 4,000 (!) people waiting to get a peek inside the 449-unit development which, controversially, is located right in the middle of what will be a waterfront park. At some point this week, the huddled masses will be able to get into the 1928 warehouse to peruse the condo offerings, which range from 588-square-foot studios to 4,638-square-foot penthouses. If the park ends up looking anywhere near as nice as this rendering (and there’s reason to think it will, given what’s already been built in Dumbo), this should be one of the most sought-after addresses this side of the East River. Time will tell. Does anyone know how many of these things are in contract already?
Park Condos, but the Park Comes Later [NY Times]
One Brooklyn Bridge Park Open for Business [Brownstoner]


The same person has owned this brick townhouse at 39 Willow Place in Brooklyn Heights since 1974, which might explain why it’s priced so cheaply. The photos in the listings, however, show that the house is in decent shape, though certainly lacking the jaw-dropping interiors of some houses in the area. Still, $2.5 million for a 25-footer in Brooklyn Heights? Not only that, but the price was dropped from $2,775,000 within ten days of it hitting the market earlier this month. What gives? What’s the catch?
39 Willow Place [Brown Harris Stevens] GMAP P*Shark
Price Cut [Natefind]


Before he designed Gracie Mansion, the Vincent Astor townhouse or the apartment building at 1088 Park Avenue, Mott B. Schmidt first commission was a pair of Georgian duplex townhouses at 40 and 42 Monroe Place in Brooklyn Heights in 1913. Here’s what the writer Mark Alan Hewitt had to say in The Architecture of Mott B. Schmidt:

Using the unusual width of the sites, Schmidt designed each house to accommodate two large apartments — each with a separate door — stacked one above the other. The upper floor was accessed by a stair from one of the front doors. Though the facade composition is clearly the work of a novice architect, the houses are nicely matched in scale and texture to the brownstones along the rest of the street. The young designer had obviously studied both the Victorian houses of the immediate context and some examples of classical, Georgian rowhouses.

While it’s hardly the legacy he would have hoped, this double-front door layout was recently aped by the new Boymelgreen townhouse at 518 Carlton Avenue in Prospect Heights.


66 Orange Street, Apt. 2E
Prewar three-bedroom, two-bath duplex co-op, 1,600 square feet, with wood-burning brick fireplace, open dining area, updated windowed eat-in kitchen, high ceilings, French doors and Juliet balcony on lower level; building features roof deck, laundry and storage. Maintenance $1,485.12, 49 percent tax-deductible. Asking price $1,350,000, on market 19 weeks. Brokers: Michael Connolly and Michael Ragan, Halstead Property. Photo by Scott Bintner for Property Shark.

If you’ve recently bought or sold a property, please send us the info to run in this space.


Without a whole lot of fanfare, One Brooklyn Bridge Park opened for business yesterday. There’s no pricing info on Stribling or the development’s Homepage, but one prospective buyer dropped us a note with this report from inside the sales office: There are 445 apartments in the complex, ranging from $650 a foot on the BQE side to $1,200 a foot for Manhattan views; three bedrooms start at $1.8 million. There’s one model apartment to look at (a two-bedroom) and none of the most prime units are available for sale yet. One interior design detail of note: The Sub Zero built-ins are wood covered to blend in with the cabinets. (We’ve included an interior rendering on the jump.) It’s easy to be skeptical about this project given the proximity to the BQE and the fact that there’s going to be another couple years of construction, but we bet that time will show that this is a place people want to live, especially when the park is done. What do you think?
Photo by rguskind


At the BHS show “Landmark and Legacy: Brooklyn Heights and the Preservation Movement in America” which we got an early look at last week (and review this morning on Brooklyn Record), we were particularly taken with this poster. It’s an advertisement from 1846 for the G.W. Stilwell Foundry, a maker of iron railings, grates and fenders located at 38 Fulton Street. According to the Francis Morrone-curated exhibition, Stilwell produced several styles of Greek Revival iron work that was unique to the Brooklyn Heights market; some of it can still be seen in the streets of the neighborhood today. Another neat artifact from the show: The hand-made map (on the jump) created by local preservationists to document the existing architectural landscape of the neighborhood.
Exhibitions: Landmark and Legacy [Brooklyn Historical Society]
Exhibitions: Landmark and Legacy [Brooklyn Record]


According to Brooklyn Heights Blog, the Brooklyn Eagle reported yesterday that the Jehovah’s Witnesses are preparing to sell the 80,000-square-foot Columbia Heights building known as the Standish Arms Hotel. For the last two decades, the Watchtower group has used the limestone and brick structure to house its flock. The decision is reportedly part of a larger reorganization of the property-rich organization’s holdings. All we know is these will be some expensive apartments when a developer’s done with them. How do neighbors feel about the impending change in ownership?
Watchtower to Sell Standish Arms [Brooklyn Heights Blog] GMAP


At first glance, we were wondering what a 1,320-square-foot apartment in Brooklyn Heights was doing on the market for only $625,000. Then we notice the monthly maintenance of $1,975 and it all made sense. Other than that, there are high ceilings, big windows and new appliances in the plus column and a low floor in the minus column. The building also has the added benefit of housing the Eastern Athletic Club and possessing a killer views from the common roofdeck. Anyone know why the maintenance is so bad in this building?
111 Hicks Street [Corcoran] GMAP