Of Brooklyn’s gentrifying neighborhoods, few have seen such rapid change as Bushwick. The neighborhood, which sits in the northern portion of the borough, running from Flushing Avenue to Broadway to Conway Street and the Cemetery of the Evergreens, has grown as a natural extension of Williamsburg—a haven for creatives and young folks looking for lower rents. But well before its trendy vibe put it on the map, Bushwick was a forested enclave originally settled by the Dutch—its name is derived from a Dutch word “Boswijck,”defined as “little town in the woods”—and later, German immigrants who began building breweries and factories.
Unfortunately, as the breweries along Brewer’s Row and factories closed and farms disappeared, derelict buildings and crime took hold—with the looting, arson and rioting after the city’s blackout during the summer of 1977 playing a starring role. According to the New York Times, “In a five-year period in the late 1960s and early 70s, the Bushwick neighborhood was transformed from a neatly maintained community of wood houses into what often approached a no man’s land of abandoned buildings, empty lots, drugs and arson.”
More on Bushwick’s past… and present
One of the reasons Girls became such an instant hit is because it was lauded as the anti-Sex & the City. Its characters live in Greenpoint, not the Upper West Side; they wear Converse instead of Manolos; they struggle to pay the rent rather than living in completely unrealistic apartments. But when it comes to their real lives in New York City, the cast of the HBO show is definitely not struggling to make ends meet, as is evidenced by their impressive collection of real estate. So, in anticipation for this Sunday’s season four premier, let’s take a look at how Lena Dunham and her posse actually live in the city, as compared with their characters’ fictional digs.
See where the stars of ‘Girls’ live on and off the screen
In November 2013 Girls star Zosia Mamet (you may know her as Shosanna) and her boyfriend, actor Evan Jonigkeit, purchased a multi-family house at 896 Flushing Avenue in Bushwick (of course she wanted to live in the world’s seventh coolest neighborhood) for a little over $1 million. The couple had planned to convert the entire 2,500-square-foot home as one single-family dwelling, but less than a year after moving in it’s back on the market, now asking $1.6 million.
Take a look inside the short-lived Girls pad