Grand But Crumbling Ditmas Park Mansion Hits the Market Again at $1.5 Million


Its columned facade was once a graceful sibling to the manse next door, but for decades the Colonial Revival on Ocean Avenue has been losing its luster.

On the market in 2017 for $2.85 million, 1000 Ocean Avenue is back but with a new price of $1.5 million. There aren’t any photos of the interior, but the listing mentions a “magnificent parlor” and an “incredible staircase.”

Completed by 1899, it was designed by George Palliser along with its neighbor, 1010 Ocean Avenue, for members of the same family. Both are grandly scaled, with columned porticos and pediments ornamented with Palladium windows.

1000 ocean avenue brooklyn

No. 1000, built for George and Adelaide Van Ness, has suffered the loss of its original columns, although it still retains other original details, like its wonderful projecting bay — albeit devoid of paint and looking more than a bit worse for wear. A glimpse of its former glory can be seen in the circa 1940 tax photo of the house.

Architectural historian Christopher Gray highlighted the twin houses in his New York Times Streetscapes column back in 2007 when the Brush house, No. 1010, was headed toward renovation. At the time it appeared that the Van Ness house would be in its crumbling state for years and this has proved to be true. The Brush house was converted to medical offices with a restored exterior while the Van Ness house lingers.

ditmas park 1000 ocean avenue

The twin houses in 2016, with 1000 Ocean Avenue on the far right. Photo by Susan De Vries

The house is located within the Ditmas Park Historic District and hasn’t changed hands since the 1970s. Vicki Negron and Gemma Sokoletsky of Corcoran have the listing and it notes that the project is “not for the faint hearted” but for those with a bit of vision to recapture the former glory of the property. The listing mentions five to seven bedrooms, one bathroom and a large garden that includes the carriage house and a driveway that can accommodate several cars.

ditmas park brooklyn 1000 ocean avenue

[Images via Corcoran unless noted otherwise]

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