kensington + safety? — Brooklynian

kensington + safety?

hi all.

i currently live in crown heights and am looking into moving to kensington. the fact that is a diverse, quiet, residential neighborhood really appealed to me. it sort of reminders me of astoria with better architecture. in any case, i got mugged a few years ago where i live now and do not take the subway at night. i never want to have to live like this again -- so it is really important that i feel generally safe walking from the train home each evening. i am looking on ocean parkway between around beverly road at the moment but that may change.

are there any iffy block to be made aware of? it feels like a long-ish quiet, dark stretch to ocean parkway and i wonder how other folks feel about that walk.

also any advice on particular buildings you love or hate would be great. i've recently been wooed by ads on craig's list for buildings on the parkway with pools and doormen. anyone know anything about these buildings?



  • its fairly safe and nice :p, i almost brought a house in the area. anyway I like the F train church ave or fort hamilton stop side better than the side that is closer towards coney island ave.

    It really feels like two neighbourhoods via ocean parkway as a border.

    I guess west side of ocean feels better than east side. Just took a look at a map :p.

    like everything walk around all times of the day and night to see where how you feel and especially the times you get home.

    I used to hangout in that area alot..

  • I live in Kensignton and it is a fairly safe neighborhood. There are many immigrants such as Jews and Muslims and they tend to keep to themselves, keep the neighborhood diverse, and the rents lower than windsor terrace or park slope.

    There is still crime here, but it all has to be put into perspective. Overall I would say the crime is much lower than in crown heights, but that is just according to my observation, you might want to look at some real numbers. I also used to live in Crown Heights, by East New York Ave and I feel much safer in Kensignton. There are many more diverse families here, restaurants, bars, CSA, community gardens, etc here than there was where I used to live. East New York Ave is a real waste land though so it might be different where you live in Crown Heights.

    It is not as nearly as hip as Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, or Williamsburg. You don't have all of those restaurants here that feature in the Food Network, like the restaurant Traif in Williamsburg. You don't have a bar like Franklin Park here. There are mostly families here. You will find yourself going to other neighborhoods for restaurants and bars fairly often. There are some new restaurants at Cortelyou Road which are really good though.

    If you are looking for a doorman building, you should definitely look at those huge buildings in front of Ocean Parkway. I know someone who owns an apartment in one of them and he likes it a lot, never heard any complaints. I don't know of any other buildings around here with a doorman except the big ones with 100+ tenants in front of ocean parkway.

    At night you would be walking from McDonald ave to Ocean Parkway. Albemarle Rd or Beverly Road are small dark residential streets, so yes they don't offer much "protection" from general light and people. I have walked these streets at night several times and never was mugged or anything, but I can see what you are saying.

    If you want you might want to walk on Church Ave at night. There are more businesses there so at night there should be more people on the street. I don't know how safer it would be, but if what you want is light and people, Church Ave will have that.

  • Thanks for all the advice! The part of Crown Heights I am in is mostly older folks, retirees, etc. so it is very quiet and there aren't really bars or restaurants other than traditional Jamaican cuisine and take out Chinese food. I don't mind not having "a lot to do" in the neighborhood because I am used to it and also it forces me to cook more. :)

    And there any sketchy blocks I should know about? i.e. with a lot of street-based drug dealing and/or violence? Thanks!

  • I've lived in Kensington for 6 years, and find it quite safe, without "sketchy blocks" or any street-based drug dealing or violence. I often come home from Manhattan at midnight-1 am on the F train, walk down Beverley Road to Ocean Parkway, and either down OP or down 7th St. to Ave C (I live on the East side of OP, closer to Coney, which one of the other posters said felt more dangerous -- but it doesn't, to my mind). I also ride my bike all over this neighborhood, up to Prospect Park through side streets, around Abelmarle and MacDonald, down McDonald south of 18th St., up the east side of Ocean Parkway into the Park, down OP all the way to Coney Island, out to Brooklyn College around Flatbush and Glenwood . . . Ditmas Park (east of Coney Island Ave.) is huge houses, nicely maintained for the most part -- quiet and often no one on the streets at night, but not threatening. Coney Island Ave is not a pretty ave., but it does not seem to have toughs or druggies, mostly working class people, car-glass and other low-level businesses. The streets both east and west of Ocean Parkway are heavily residential with an Orthodox Jewish/SouthAsian/Mexican/West Indian/Russian immigrant/African-American mix mix. There are only a few bars (and the most recent violence, other than the horrible kidnapping/murder of a 9 year old boy, involved off-duty cops at one of them at 3 am). I was once sort of lunged at by a couple teenagers on the street, but wasn't mugged--I think they were playing, seeing if they'd get an older white guy to jump. I didn't. Cortelyou has a farmer's market on Sundays, a couple ok restaurants -- Ditmas has some specialized food shopping, so does 18th St. Abelmarle area north to Windsor Terrace also seems quite safe. There is a heavily industrialized area under the elevated train on McDonald at Ave. C, and that is lonely, but there's no reason to walk around there -- unless you're going to the nearby mosques or synagogs which keep things pretty safe. I'm sure there must be sometimes a mugging, maybe other personal attacks, but reading the neighborhood newspaper's police blotter it's mostly snatched purses and mostly further south into Brooklyn. This is a quiet and safe neighborhood.

  • trivia for people who don't know the area that well :p.

    there is a alot of Carpathian jewsish immigrants in the area from Ukraine, Hungary and few other countries.

    Chinese immigrants too since body mention them.

    and being nyc, immigrants tend to segregate. not mix as people think it is. I remember along time back majority in the area wasn't happy when some old Korean immigrants(few none white families in the area) sold to some Bangladeshi immigrants.

    with religious immigrants like jews and muslims, they are mostly walking distance to the houses of worship. so you'll see them more cluster towards that.

  • Kensington and Ditmas Park have their share of robberies and muggings.

    I was mugged at gunpoint in Ditmas Park last December on Marlborough off Cortelyou (I was unhurt), and a friend was sexually molested in Kensington a year ago on the street (East 4th St off Church Ave), and there was a couple of muggings on her block as well. Also, one of my neighbors was mugged on Marlborough near Beverly a couple of years ago.

    I don't mean to scare you away, Brooklynleather, because relatively speaking it's not dangerous or gang-run, etc. But it IS isolated, and that is what makes it, to me, sketchy.

    Beverly on Ocean Parkway is a long walk from a subway. DO NOT walk along Beverly alone at night, I know there's a subway stop there but the police said that muggers sometimes rob people close to that subway stop because it's a quick getaway for them. Also just don't walk around those pretty Victorian blocks alone at night. You are isolated and a target that way. It is totally fine in the daytime though.

    It's far better to walk along either Church or Cortelyou to Ocean Parkway.

    If you do take the apartment (and if you like it you should take it, it's not a bad neighborhood), just figure out how you will deal with coming home late at night from a subway. OR see if you can find an apartment closer to a subway.

  • didn't that guy who dismember that kid live in the hood? almost forgot about him.

  • the neighbourhood from stats is much safer than where you are living now.

    hmm i swear bkleather was it you whom i fix the mac dvd drive thing along time ago. if so i would say its much better location.

    also next to the f train church stop is better. also under the f train sucks.

    if you find a apartment next to the immigrants should be fairly safe.

  • I'm in northern crown heights south of atlantic on Brooklyn Ave.

    i guess i'll have to do some night walking to see how i feel. thanks all!

  • I mean kengsington is a much better location than the building you were at many years back like 4 or 5 years :p when i replace that dvd drive.

  • Friends of mine, a couple with a toddler, live in in Kensington N. of Church Ave. on the west side of Ocean Parkway. It's in the city, so there's no doubt crime there, but the whole feel I get every time I visit, day or night, is quiet and chilled out.

  • I grew up in Brazil in the 80's and I lived through a tremendous amount of crime. What I learned is that it is definitely safer not to take public transportation and walk the dark streets alone at night. So if you want to protect yourself and prevent being mugged, etc. you should definitely not walk alone at night. Even if you are going to Manhattan these are still good tips to prevent crime. In Manhattan the avenues are usually safer, but in many neighborhoods the streets are very dark and crime occurs frequently.

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