Via alphabetjenn on Flickr
Last fall 6sqft reported rumors that late-night Union Square model-spotting icon The Coffee Shop would be replaced with three new restaurants and possibly a Chase Bank. The rumors have been confirmed, says Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York; an application by the bank to open a branch on the 16th Street and Union Square West corner has been approved by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The popular coffee shop, which had a cameo role in “Sex and the City,” closed in 2018 after anchoring the corner for nearly 30 years.
Find out moreHigh rents, changing times
As if Quooklyn wasn’t bad enough. A recent tipoff about townhouse at 16-35 Hancock Street in prime Ridgewood near the Myrtle-Wyckoff subway stop informed us that: “SoMA (South of Myrtle Avenue) is the new SOHO, with a blossoming creative community of artists and restauranteurs. Former Soho/Tribeca residents have moved to Ridgewood for a more authentic experience and stimulating lifestyle.” It’s true that Soho/Tribeca residents have long ago fled those neighborhoods on account of billionaire rents and not wanting to live in a sneaker mall, and also true that Ridgewood is ablaze with creative newcomers and packed to the gills with authentic experience. But after SoBro (South Bronx), Dobro (Downtown Brooklyn) SoHa (South Harlem), Soho West (New Jersey) and NoLo (uh…we’re really not sure), and, apparently, NoBat, NoCal, BoHo, and GoCaGa, enough may just be enough. Plus, Ridgewood requires no rebranding–it’s cool enough on its own.
So let’s see the house
Image: Clover Grocery via Facebook.
There was a time not too long ago when New Yorkers began to resent the apparent gentrification of local bodegas, which had begun carrying high-priced, healthy food items sought by new neighborhood residents. Chain convenience stores like 7-11 were yet another blow to the concept of the quirky corner deli. And then, of course, there was the Whole Foods effect. The latest development in the ascent of the local grocery store is even more difficult to grok: The “wellness bodega” has arrived. As Eater reports, mini-markets–like Clover Grocery in Manhattan’s West Village–in metro areas like NYC and LA are stocking items like $18 “vegan friendly” condoms and marine collagen supplements–and confusing the daylights out of ordinary city folk.
And a WeWork market, of course
Inwood Hill Park; Image: Dana via Flickr.
On Wednesday the City Council approved a rezoning plan for a 59-block section of Inwood, a neighbhorhood often referred to as the “last affordable neighborhood in Manhattan,” the New York Times reports. The plan was approved last week by the city’s zoning subcommittee and the Land Use Committee. The Inwood rezoning is part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to rezone neighborhoods across the city as part of the push to create and preserve 300,000 affordable housing units by his goal date of 2026. Inwood is the fifth neighborhood–including the also-controversial East New York and East Harlem–to be approved for rezoning under the plan.
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Governor Cuomo announced a $1.4 billion initiative last week to bring resources like health care services and new jobs to Central Brooklyn. According to the governor, the plan, called “Vital Brooklyn,” will bring 7,600 jobs and more than 3,000 new affordable housing units to Brownsville, East New York, Bedford-Stuyvesant and Crown Heights. And while Cuomo’s administration found these neighborhoods to be some of the most disadvantaged in the state, residents worry about the possible gentrification and displacement effects (h/t NY Times).
Learn more about Vital Brooklyn here
A new report from the Regional Plan Association finds that residents of the Bronx are at highest risk of being pushed out due to gentrification compared to other New Yorkers, according to DNAinfo. The report, titled “Pushed Out: Housing Displacement in an Unaffordable Region,” looks at the effect of rising housing costs in New York City and addresses what it names “A Crisis of Affordability.” The report found the threat of being pushed out due to lack of affordable housing was a threat in 71 percent of census tracts in the Bronx. Following in displacement risk was Brooklyn at 55 percent, Manhattan and Queens at 31 percent each and Staten Island at 15 percent.
People moving out, people moving in
We hear so frequently about the players behind Manhattan’s billion-dollar real estate projects and how foreign investors are pouring a global vault’s worth of currency into New York City property, often shielded by LLCs. It’s illuminating to get a closer look at the city’s larger real estate landscape–one that has changed so much in recent decades–and learn who’s behind the soaring property values, skyrocketing rents, frenzied flipping and veritable horse-trading that has driven the unprecedented and transformative gentrification beyond Manhattan’s rarified development scene.
A recent story by The Real Deal titled “Learning and earning: Hasidic Brooklyn’s real estate machers” reveals that a huge slice of the borough’s real estate pie is owned by the Hasidic community. The ultra-orthodox sect reportedly includes some of Brooklyn’s wealthiest property owners, to the tune of $2.5 billion.
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Recently on the Brian Lehrer radio show on WNYC, Mayor De Blasio addressed questions about the effects inclusionary development–i.e. giving developers the green light to build market rate housing if they set aside 25-30 percent of the units for low- and middle-income residents–has on the quality of life in lower-income neighborhoods. A growing concern among housing activists is that reliance on this kind of inclusionary zoning leads to gentrification that pushes out the lower income residents due to the 70-75 percent of market rate units bringing new, wealthy residents and new businesses that will cater to them.
Hear what the mayor has to say
- Get ready to cry your eyes out. These maps show that one-bedroom rentals have gone up $200/month since just six months ago. [Brokelyn]
- Gentrification summed up in 311 calls. [NY Mag]
- If you’re heading upstate this weekend, be sure to hit up these eateries in the Hudson Valley and Catksills. [Brownstoner]
- This construction worker doesn’t let his 9-5pm job get in the way of his love of creating art. [NYTimes]
- Earlier this week, CityRealty released a report about 22,000 new apartments coming to Brooklyn. Now see what’s in store for Long Island City in Queens. [DNAinfo]
Images: Pajtim Osmanaj artwork by Tony Cenicola for The New York Times (L); Long Island City’s high-rise buildings by Nigel Chiwaya for DNAinfo (R)
Photo: Joe Buglewicz
As the transformation of Queens reaches a bit deeper into the borough, it’s really no surprise that Jackson Heights is quickly becoming a focal point for savvy buyers and renters. The area, roughly bounded by Northern Boulevard, Junction Boulevard, Roosevelt Avenue and the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, is fully loaded with stunning pre-war co-ops practically everywhere and shiny new redevelopments for under $800,000. Combine this with its diverse cultural offerings and a myriad of subways that can always get you smack dab in the middle of Manhattan in less than 30 minutes (that’s better than a lot of the up-and-coming areas of Brooklyn, mind you), it has all the makings for the next hipster-setting housing boom.
Why Jackson Heights is one to consider