A new boutique condo development has hit the market at 1329 East 17th Street in Midwood, with one-bedrooms starting at $399,000. The Gray Stone has “one bedrooms plus home offices,” according to the Aptsandlofts.com listing.

There are currently five units on the market at the six-story building, which has a common roof deck. Each apartment is about 815 square feet and has nine-foot ceilings, washer/dryer hookups, central heating and cooling, and private outdoor space.

1329 East 17th Street [Aptsandlofts.com] GMAP



This junior four co-op at the edge of Midwood and Flatbush Kensington is small but charming. The master bedroom is decently sized and the second one is 8 by 10 feet and off the galley kitchen, according to the floor plan. It seems like a good choice for a couple with a small child or roommates who don’t mind splitting the rent unevenly.

The kitchen and bathroom are recently updated, according to the listing, although the photos don’t show it. The bathroom has kind of a retro feel with the brown accents. Do you think the $1,800 a month rent is ambitious for the location?

770 Ocean Parkway [Fillmore] GMAP

Brooklyn, one building at a time.

Name: Our Lady of Refuge Catholic Church
Address: 1073 Ocean Avenue
Cross Streets: Foster Avenue and Farragut Road
Neighborhood: Midwood
Year Built: 1933-1934
Architectural Style: French Gothic
Architect: Henry V. Murphy
Other works by architect: St. Peter Claver School in Bed Stuy, garage/house at 152 Berkeley Place in Park Slope, with Edward H. Lehmann, first four buildings of St. John’s University, Queens.
Landmarked: No

The story: It’s not often we have a good photographic record of a Brooklyn building’s construction. The parishioners at Our Lady of Refuge are fortunate, as are those of us who appreciate church architecture. The Brooklyn Eagle took a lot of pictures when this building was going up, giving us an excellent visual history to go along with the names and dates.

Houses of worship are important parts of neighborhood development, so when Irish and German Catholics began settling in Midwood at the turn of the 20th century, it was important for them to have a church in their midst. Brooklyn’s Catholic Bishop in 1911 was Bishop Charles Edward McDonnell. He authorized the building of a new parish, and sent out Rev. Robert O’Donovan to be the first priest. For some reason it was hard to buy land in this part of Flatbush, but Fr. O’Donovan prevailed, and was able to buy this plot on Ocean Avenue near Foster. The cornerstone for the first church was laid, and a small, one story church was built in 1912.

This simple chapel didn’t take much time to build, and only two weeks later, the first mass was held in the unfinished space. That September, only five months from the ground breaking, the church was done, and was dedicated by the Bishop. Photographs show a modest chapel, which the congregation soon outgrew. By 1928, Our Lady of Refuge was in dire need of more room.

Father O’Donovan organized a fund raising campaign, and eminent Catholic church architect Henry V. Murphy was signed on to design a large new church, big enough to accommodate more community growth. Murphy, who was a very versatile designer of sacred spaces, designed a French Gothic church that still manages to be very 20th century, with a hint of Deco sensibility. Just take a look at his St. Peter Claver School to see him go full blown Catholic Deco.


Councilman David Greenfield announced today at a press conference that he had secured funding to build a new public plaza in front of the Midwood branch library at 975 East 16th Street near Avenue J. The $250,000 project, financed from the 2014 city budget, will likely feature benches, trees and various kinds of plants, according to a press release. GMAP

Photo by Nicholas Strini for PropertyShark

Brooklyn, one building at a time.

Name: Originally Vitagraph Studios, then Warner Brothers Studio, now JC Studios
Address: 1262-1286 East 14th Street
Cross Streets: Corner Locust Avenue
Neighborhood: Midwood
Year Built: 1905, 1912, 1914, and later
Architectural Style: Original building, 19th century brick factory, plus additional buildings, last one built in 1956
Architect: W. L. Stoddart, and unknown others
Other works by architect: Stoddart- Ponce De Leon Hotel, Atlanta, and other hotels, mostly in the South
Landmarked: No

The story:
In 1897, two enterprising visionaries founded a company called American Vitagraph, here in Brooklyn. They were going to start a business not too many people knew anything about back then: movie making. J. Stuart Blackton and Albert E. Smith, with later distributer William “Pop” Rock were among the first American movie entrepreneurs. Blackton had seen Thomas Edison’s new film projector, and after inventor talked him into buying one, Blackton couldn’t get enough. He wanted to make his own movies. Vitagraph produced some of the first American newsreels, and produced the world’s first animated movie, “The Humpty Dumpty Circus” which was also the first use of stop-motion photography.

The men opened offices in Lower Manhattan, and by 1907, they were the most prolific film production company in America, producing hundreds of silent movies and newsreels. Their first feature film was shot on the roof of their Nassau Street offices, but they soon realized that in order to really produce quality films, they needed space to build sets, store costumes and props, and coordinate special effects. They needed someplace large and cheap, preferably away from the distractions of the city. They choose the fields of Brooklyn; Midwood, to be exact.


It’s rare to see a six-digit ask these days that starts with the numeral one, so this one-bedroom co-op at 1119 Ocean Parkway caught our eye simply because of the price of $179,000. What’s more, the Midwood co-op is actually in good shape, having been recently renovated. And while the finishes are pretty generic, it’s hard not to see this as an interesting entry point in a heated marketplace, especially since the maintenance is just $585.

1119 Ocean Parkway, #6N [Corcoran] GMAP


It’s neo-colonial meets Arts and Crafts at this 1915 South Midwood house close to Ditmas Park. There are bay windows, a porch, plenty of stained glass, inlaid floors, neo-colonial mantels and a simple yet charming updated kitchen. Our only quibble is the powder room that steals space from the breakfast room; maybe it could go in the pantry, and a new pantry could extend into the kitchen. The house also has two other bathrooms, six bedrooms and a two-car garage. Do you think it’s a good deal for $980,000?

657 E 24th Street [Mary Kay Gallagher] GMAP


1. PARK SLOPE $2,950,000
535 3rd Street GMAP P*Shark
A 20-foot wide brownstone that hit the market in mid-April for $3,300,0000. It was under contract by early May. Here’s the old listing. Deed recorded on 7/22/2013.

2. PARK SLOPE $2,675,000
29 Prospect Place GMAP P*Shark
A four-story, two-family brick townhouse. Asking $2,800,000 in April, in contract by May. Deed recorded on 7/26/2013.

3. MIDWOOD $2,570,000
1311 Ocean Parkway GMAP P*Shark
A two-family home; no listing available. Deed recorded on 7/24/2013.

4. BOERUM HILL $2,300,000
393 Degraw Street GMAP P*Shark
A brick townhouse with an owner’s upper duplex. See the old listing here. The home was asking $2,300,000. Deed recorded on 7/24/2013.

5. BROOKLYN HEIGHTS $2,300,000
360 Furman Street, #211 GMAP P*Shark
The listing’s already been pulled for this unit. It came with a storage space. Deed recorded on 7/22/2013.


1. FORT GREENE $2,900,000
366 Carlton Avenue GMAP P*Shark
We found some pictures of this home, but not an official listing. Deed recorded on 7/3/2013.

2. PARK SLOPE $2,800,000
105 Sterling Place GMAP P*Shark
This house, asking $2.8 million, entered contract after 19 days on the market. It’s only 3,060 square feet, making this three-story home worth $915 per square foot. Deed recorded on 7/3/2013.

3. COBBLE HILL $2,750,000
140 Kane Street GMAP P*Shark
A former carriage housse that was once Building of the Day. Here’s the old listing for the home, which was asking $2,750,000. It entered contract in less than two weeks. Deed recorded on 7/3/2013.

4. MIDWOOD $2,275,000
2302 Avenue N GMAP P*Shark
No listing for this one-family home. Deed recorded on 7/5/2013.

5. BROOKLYN HEIGHTS $2,100,000
253 Henry Street, #1 GMAP P*Shark
A parlor and garden duplex condo asking $2,200,000, then $1,995,000. Here’s the old listing. Deed recorded on 7/3/2013.