NYT article: "Crown Heights Gets Its Turn"
  • "Some of that development includes condominiums, a sure sign that the initial wave of young, single students and professionals that arrived in the 2000s is now being followed by a second, more affluent, wave of professionals and families."

    I'd agree with that description for the rectangle defined by EP, Washington, Atlantic and Nostrand.   

    A friend of mine and I recently had a discussion in which he commented, "When I moved here in 2000, this area was 12% white and 88% other.    By 2020, I expect it to be completely reversed:    88% white and 12% other."

    Given the present interaction between wealth, income, education and preferences, I see his prediction as being spot on.

         
  • @whynot_31 When do you expect that description to apply to the whole of Crown Heights, and what do you feel is holding it back?
  • image

    I'd argue that there is no "whole of Crown Heights".

    I'd answer you in terms of 5 separate areas:
    1.   The area defined above.
    2.   The area defined by Nostrand, EP, Albany and Atlantic.
    3.   The area defined by Washington, EP, Nostrand and Empire
    4.   The "Lubavitch Area":   Nostrand,  EP, Troy, Empire
    5.   The area defined by Albany, Atlantic, Saratoga, ENY Ave/Empire. 


    Areas 2 - 5 have not seen the same influx of "young, single students and professionals" to the same degree as Area 1 for many reasons.

     
  • whynot_31 said:

    Areas 2 - 5 have not seen the same influx of "young, single students and professionals" to the same degree as Area 1 for many reasons.

     



    I'm trying to understand some of those reasons...

    Also, I'm not sure I agree with area 4.  I would define it as Nostrand, EP, Utica (or Schenectady if you insist, but definitely not Troy), Empire.

  • Agreed, and hereby revise 4 to:
            
    4.   Nostrand, EP, Utica, Empire. 

    Do you find each of the 5 areas equally attractive?    I.E.    If you had $2k a month to spend on housing and didn't see anything you liked in area 1, which area would you next choose?

    Note:   
    a.  You might choose "none of the above" and live in an area outside of Crown Heights.
    b.  Your preferences would likely be influenced by a very complex set of factors.
  • No; I do not find these areas equally attractive.   In order of preference, I would next choose area 2, 4, 3, none.
  • If enough people had your same preferences and means, that would be the order in which Crown Heights changes.
  • I'm not sure I follow.  I'm trying to understand why the other areas have not seen same influx of "young, single students and professionals" to the same degree as Area 1.

    At one point (say, 10-15 years ago), my order of preference would have been drastically different.  Area 1 would most likely not be preferable over the others, particularity as one gets closer to Nostrand.  However (per my understanding), as Clinton Hill and Prospect Heights became more attractive and expensive, Area 1 became a nearby alternative option.

    So, is it simply that Area 1 is still relatively affordable but once that is not the case, the "young, single students and professionals" will venture into other areas, or are there other reasons?
  • That's part of it, but by no means the whole story.  Let's think about area 1.   

    -Not to be coy, but a big part of its appeal is who is already there.  Nothing draws a crowd, like crowd. 

    How did it get the crowd initially?

    Not only was it on the eastern edge rapidly gentrifying Prospect Heights, it also had the ability to be "reborn".    The vacant Jewish Hospital Complex became hundreds of apartments, and lots of new residential construction on vacant lots came online between 2005 and 2009. 

    The other areas described will experience this to a lesser degree. For example, they have fewer vacant lots and don't have a large vacant hospital complex.  As a result, the other areas are less likely to be attractive or affordable to 20 somethings in their first "real" job because there is no new crowd to draw a crowd.

    Returning to present day Area 1:
    As the article implies, its newest residents are now not only older, but wear worn college sweatshirts on weekends that proclaim private, non-liberal arts, grad schools.

    You can see them at Centanni and Barbachino.     They are the ones eating, not the ones serving the food.    
  • Thanks @whynot_31.  Makes sense.  I didn't think of the vacant lots and the vacant hospital complex and how they contributed.
  • Now that the vacant lots are almost gone in area 1, we are starting to see "under capitalized and low ROI properties" be demolished for new residential:

    -churches

    -single story parking garages and warehouses

    -old houses on large lots
  • whynot_31 said:


    -single story parking garages and warehouses



    / basic retail

    aka "taxpayers"
  • I don't think it should be separated as such. I think they should be separated by spheres of influence of the commercial roads. For example, Washington Avenue, Franklin Avenue, Nostrand Avenue, and Utica Avenue, all have slightly different vibes and different types of people live around them. 

    I live just east of Nostrand and i can say that the same type of people that have been moving to Franklin and Washington have been moving here since the summer of last year. It's been weird seeing change happen so quickly. The brownstone I live in is being renovated for new tenants, several people have also renovated their own on my block and have sold them. The buildings across the street from me have been/are being renovated and several families have moved in. 

    Crown Heights easily takes the cake for fastest gentrifying neighborhood.
  • The Lower East Side was incredibly fast as well, roughly 1995 - 2005.

    It may have changed faster.
  • "How did it get the crowd initially?"
    Well, allot people back in early 2000, were unsure where Prospect hts ended and Crown Hts was unknown/forgotten history a little. Then the Realators figured out the area east of Washington and The old hospital could be marketed as Prospect Hts living. Bait and switch? All good cuz Crown Hts is reborn and unique to itself.
  • I found this quote to be interesting: ''The support we have received,'' Mr. Cherry said, ''shows that there is an interest in achieving a balance between gentrification and displacement." Can this balance be found in CH again or attempted?
  • I found this quote to be interesting (from 1985): ''The support we have received,'' Mr. Cherry said, ''shows that there is an interest in achieving a balance between gentrification and displacement." Can this balance be found in CH again or attempted?
  • In retrospect, that was the time to start encouraging the community to buy the land and Participate in ownership.
  • @southeast
    IN 1985......"Houses, when available, range from about $125,000 to $150,000. One that
    sold recently for $125,000 paid taxes of about $1,000. Studios rent for
    $300 to $350 a month and one- and two-bedrooms range from $400 to $600.
    Co-ops along Eastern Parkway average $20,000 a room."


  • For extra points, a reader should dig up the median incomes for the area during those years.

    Then, we could see how the new prices correlate to the new incomes.

    ...then, we'd add things like household wealth, because income and wealth are often distinct.
  • We're you ever a teacher? This sounds like some old story problems.
  • This story is as old as humanity.
  • As someone who was attempting to sell subsidized condos in 1990 in Crown Heights, the irony is that no one wanted to buy in the neighborhood because it was so depressed.  That's really laughable given what we know now.

  • When parents grow old , estates are settled and siblings choose to sell the house they grew up in instead of sharing ownership, neighborhoods start to change hands.  The sellers participate in change as much as buyers.
  • Esperanza said:

    I found this quote to be interesting (from 1985): ''The support we have received,'' Mr. Cherry said, ''shows that there is an interest in achieving a balance between gentrification and displacement." Can this balance be found in CH again or attempted?



    Assuming he is still alive, I'd love to meet Mr. Cheery and see if he still views 1985 as a fair, equitable period.

    I'm not sure I want to go back to the circumstances that lead to NYC taking the steps it did in 1985.

    I certainly don't see those circumstances as being present now.

  • @ capt. planet -

    The founder of TerraCRG thinks it won't be long before developers start creating condos, because the scarcity of them is starting to make them more profitable than rentals.

    I do love pendulums.

    http://www.brownstoner.com/blog/2014/07/the-hot-seat-ofer-cohen/

  • Actually, when we were looking to buy four-five years ago, we looked at a lot of condos in Crown Heights -- the one we bought on St. Marks, one on Pacific and Brooklyn I think, one on Bergen between Utica and Rochester, one on Sterling between Troy and Schenectady, one on Prospect and Buffalo, and one on Albany between Sterling and St. Johns. Plus two just past the southern border of Crown Heights. But then all the inventory seemed to dry up.
  • My freinds tried to buy a condo near Franklin 3 years ago but the developer dragged the processout so long , like for over a year , they had to drop it and buy something else in another hood. Seems the developer was watching the value rise and had options.  anyone else see that happen? Seemed really unfair at the time.
  • I'd like to read an article that covers the soaring values of land zoned residential.

    I suspect Crown Heights is among the neighborhoods with the highest % gain over the past few years.
  • Does Trulia or Streeteasy have those figures?
  • They might. My sense is that they focus on built properties.

    ...needless to say, the stats I want would have problems because you can't really compare a 2000 sq ft lot to a 20,000 sq ft one on a price per sq ft basis.

    Basically, I just regret not buying a single story parking garage in 1996 and seem to have some desire to see how much salt I can rub in the wound.
  • This just in from "The Insider's Guide to New York Real Estate"...

    9 THINGS YOU DON'T KNOW — BUT WANT TO — ABOUT CROWN HEIGHTS
    http://brickunderground.com/blog/2014/06/crown_heights_neighborhood_secrets

    Apparently one of those is a very mistaken sense of boundaries:

    "Neighborhood boundaries: Utica and Classon Avenues, Empire Boulevard and East New York Avenue."

    Ha.
  • The article left out the northern boundary. *headdesk*
  • I didn't notice.

    I got distracted by the woman in the sparkly outfit.
  • "6. Locals enjoy the parade their own way: "Get out of the neighborhood during the West Indies Day Parade. Just do it. Go stay with a friend, plan a trip, spend the day at a museum. It's a crazy 'parade' where tensions run high, music is blasting, and people are reckless." -Nicolas "My building piles onto the stoop to watch the West Indies parade. It’s beautiful, but it’s also crazy loud and you can’t really go anywhere. So either commit to watching it or head out of Brooklyn for the day." - Benny "You get to watch the entire neighborhood working on their costumes for months beforehand, the children’s parade is adorable, the music is LOUD and day of the parade the entire neighborhood smells amazing. But it can also be very dangerous. That’s not to say you should hide away—just be smart about it." - Hanna"

    Anyone have thoughts on whether the parade will be around forever?  Apparently, it started in Harlem (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labor_Day_Carnival).  I, for one, would not be sad if it moved on to another location.
  • This article partially answers my question about land prices above:
     
    "as development heats up in the neighborhood, so do land prices, which have vaulted from around $100 per buildable foot in 2012 to more than $200 in 2014, according to Brooklyn-based brokerage TerraCRG."

    http://therealdeal.com/blog/2014/07/16/crown-heights-multifamily-portfolio-trades-for-25m/
  • "6. Locals enjoy the parade their own way: "Get out of the neighborhood during the West Indies Day Parade. Just do it. Go stay with a friend, plan a trip, spend the day at a museum. It's a crazy 'parade' where tensions run high, music is blasting, and people are reckless." -Nicolas "My building piles onto the stoop to watch the West Indies parade. It’s beautiful, but it’s also crazy loud and you can’t really go anywhere. So either commit to watching it or head out of Brooklyn for the day." - Benny "You get to watch the entire neighborhood working on their costumes for months beforehand, the children’s parade is adorable, the music is LOUD and day of the parade the entire neighborhood smells amazing. But it can also be very dangerous. That’s not to say you should hide away—just be smart about it." - Hanna"

    Anyone have thoughts on whether the parade will be around forever?  Apparently, it started in Harlem (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labor_Day_Carnival).  I, for one, would not be sad if it moved on to another location.


    Maybe the parade should be moved to Flatbush Avenue, like between Church Avenue and Empire Boulevard? :) 

    If it gets moved elsewhere, that'd certainly be a big news story.

    I have accepted the parade as a part of life in the neighborhood. Then again, I grew up here, so I know that even if I don't attend the actual parade, I can't completely ignore it; I can hear and see floats as they pass through.
  • I don't want it to move at all. It'd be disappointing if it did because there is no other area that is as accessible by train, very wide, and with a significant West Indian population. There would be enormous backlash from the community if they even thought about moving the Labor Day parade.

    I think it's slightly insensitive to say you wouldn't be mad if it moved. Other than that parade, there really is no representation of Caribbean culture throughout the city. Sure there are small enclaves of West Indians, but many of them are getting priced out their neighborhoods anyway.
  • I don't want it to move at all. It'd be disappointing if it did because there is no other area that is as accessible by train, very wide, and with a significant West Indian population. There would be enormous backlash from the community if they even thought about moving the Labor Day parade.

    I think it's slightly insensitive to say you wouldn't be mad if it moved. Other than that parade, there really is no representation of Caribbean culture throughout the city. Sure there are small enclaves of West Indians, but many of them are getting priced out their neighborhoods anyway.

    @BryceTC You mention significant West Indian population, but that is changing... You also mention that "other than that parade, there really is not representation of Caribbean culture throughout the city."  The parade will still be in the City, just not on Eastern Parkway.

    It moved once; why can't it move again...

    Utica is accessible by train.  Maybe the parade route should change to go east on EP from Utica.  Flatbush Ave, which @mugofmead111 suggested, is accessible by train as well.

    I've lived here all my life, and although it's gotten far better than it has been in the past and I've kinda gotten used to it, one can't ignore it, to say the least, even if you are blocks away from the parade route.

    Side note: EP west of Utica hasn't been the center of the West Indian population for quite a while now, if it ever was.
  • southeast said:

    I don't want it to move at all. It'd be disappointing if it did because there is no other area that is as accessible by train, very wide, and with a significant West Indian population. There would be enormous backlash from the community if they even thought about moving the Labor Day parade.

    I think it's slightly insensitive to say you wouldn't be mad if it moved. Other than that parade, there really is no representation of Caribbean culture throughout the city. Sure there are small enclaves of West Indians, but many of them are getting priced out their neighborhoods anyway.

    @BryceTC You mention significant West Indian population, but that is changing... You also mention that "other than that parade, there really is not representation of Caribbean culture throughout the city."  The parade will still be in the City, just not on Eastern Parkway.

    It moved once; why can't it move again...

    Utica is accessible by train.  Maybe the parade route should change to go east on EP from Utica.  Flatbush Ave, which @mugofmead111 suggested, is accessible by train as well.

    I've lived here all my life, and although it's gotten far better than it has been in the past and I've kinda gotten used to it, one can't ignore it, to say the least, even if you are blocks away from the parade route.

    Side note: EP west of Utica hasn't been the center of the West Indian population for quite a while now, if it ever was.



    Because a significant portion of the West Indian population of Brooklyn still lives in Crown Heights, just east of Nostrand Avenue. Even people that aren't West Indian come out to view the parade towards the end by the museum and library. It's a cultural experience that isn't limited to the people that are of that culture. That's why many enjoy it. 

    Additionally, this can be related to the often discussed topic of Brooklyn losing much of its embedded culture. What's next, when people move East we just push it past Utica and even further? 

    Utica cannot handle the amount of traffic that EP can. You have lived here long enough to see that even 4 laned Eastern Parkway gets packed to capacity. It's simply not feasible to move it to another street. You shouldn't try to ignore the parade, but rather embrace it. It helps people make a little extra cash and such from opening little food tents and such too.
  • @BryceTC You have some valid points.  However, as we see with other parades, parades are not necessarily located in the location where the the related population lives (assuming that is indeed the case in CH).  Maybe it should be in Manhattan. Manhattan has big enough streets, accessible by public transportation, and shouldn't inconvenience many people as 1) it is on a legal holiday so less people at work and 2) not a residential neighborhood so, for the most part, won't inconvenience those who must be in the vicinity but don't want to join.  Manhattan is also the location of many other parades celebrating various cultures.

    The loss of culture in CH doesn't really bother me.  If you want to save a memory or a piece of the past, build a museum.  A neighborhood evolves with its current occupants.  This is particularly evidenced, in my mind, by the buildings built to be used as synagogues which were converted to churches and which are now being converted to condos; the buildings are evolving along with the needs/interests of its neighbors.
  • southeast said:

    Utica is accessible by train.  Maybe the parade route should change to go east on EP from Utica.  Flatbush Ave, which @mugofmead111 suggested, is accessible by train as well.



    Side note: EP west of Utica hasn't been the center of the West Indian population for quite a while now, if it ever was.


    Utica is accessible by train only where a train line perpendicularly intersects with it (i.e. the A and the C on Fulton and the 3 and the 4 on Eastern Parkway only).  There are some more transit options along Eastern Parkway (the Franklin Avenue Shuttle, the 2, 3, 4, 5 and the B and the Q would be a 10-15 minute walk away from either Prospect Park or 7th Avenue).

    At least the stretch of Flatbush used in my example would roughly parallel the Brighton line. Closing down that part of Flatbush though may cause more traffic havoc than shutting down part of Eastern Parkway.

    I don't see why this carnival has to be moved into Manhattan. There are local St. Patrick's Day parades, a parade to celebrate the Chinese New Year, and a LGBT pride parade held in Brooklyn in addition to the main ones that take place in Manhattan.