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Attempted robbery at Vivi Bubble Tea, armed with a glue gun


Vivi Bubble TeaImage via Google Maps

After a tip to police, a believed serial robber was arrested in Vivi Bubble Tea at 113 Court St on Monday.

From Pix11:

The employee began to put money in the bag when two officers entered the store and confronted Price, police said.

The officers allegedly spotted a black object in Price’s hand and demanded that he drop it. Police said he did not comply, and fled to the back of the store.

Price was later apprehended without further incident, and a glue gun wrapped in black tape, a black mask and backpack were found in the store’s bathroom, police said.

If you see something, say something.

Construction on 9 Dekalb Ave tower seemingly at a standstill


9 Dekalb Ave Construction

Construction appears to be at a standstill at 9 Dekalb Ave, the giant skyscraper coming to Downtown Brooklyn that will be twice as tall as any current building in the neighborhood.

The image is an aerial view of the construction site, with the old Dime Savings Bank in the lower right-hand corner of the image. Construction crews were hard at work removing floors of the attached building last summer/fall, but it seems like no progress has been made since then.

I assume the next step will be pile-driving. Which, if my experience living in Carroll Gardens during the early construction of 365 Bond is any indicator, will be neighborhood-shaking.

Does anyone know what’s the hold-up? As much as I dislike the building design, I am excited for more of these giant construction projects to be done.

9 Dekalb Ave mockupImage via CityRealty

Meeting tomorrow to fight against high rise planned at 80 Flatbush


80 Flatbush MockupImage via 80 Flatbush

Not everyone is happy with all the high rises coming to the neighborhood. Members of our community have banded around stopping the two towers coming to 80 Flatbush Avenue, right across from Atlantic Terminal.

The main argument against this building, as far as I can tell (the official Block 80 Flatbush Towers website is currently down for me, is it working for you?) is that this giant tower will drastically alter several neighborhoods. The tower will be imposing to Boerum Hill, Ft. Greene, Park Slope, Gowanus, Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill, and Carroll Gardens, all of which consist mostly of brownstone buildings.

This is totally fair. Most of the new Downtown Brooklyn skyscrapers are clustered in the downtown area. Planned buildings like Brooklyn Point, 11 Hoyt, and 9 Dekalb are all in the same general vicinity, none of which looming over other neighborhoods (although 11 Hoyt is pretty close to Boerum Hill).

These new 80 Flatbush towers are creeping farther south, having a much larger impact on people in brownstone Brooklyn.

If you’d like your voice to be heard, you can join the community meeting on Wednesday, April 18th at St. Francis College at 180 Remsen St from 6pm to 9pm.

Brooklyn Neighbors Stop 80 Flatbush Flyer

City Council meeting for Downtown Brooklyn today


84th precinct brooklyn

Looks like the 84th Precinct (which covers Downtown Brooklyn) is having a city council meeting today at 7pm.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to make it. Will anyone reading this be there? I’d love to post about it on the website.

I’d love to find someone who regularly goes to community events such as these to share their perspective. I love the type of coverage on the Carroll Garden’s blog Pardon Me for Asking, and would love to have the same type of thing here.

Either way, I’m going to try to make it to the next City Council meeting.


A Macy’s Parking Garage No More, Ready for 11 Hoyt


11 Hoyt Construction Site

It can be hard to see from the street, but Macy’s old parking garage is no longer a parking garage. The first step in constructing the next skyscraper being added to Downtown Brooklyn’s skyline, at 11 Hoyt. I shot this photo from our roof on April 14th, 2018, so everyone could get a look at the current progress.

You can click through to the 11 Hoyt website, to see renderings of the new building. New York Yimby has even more. Not too bad, IMO. Definitely not as utterly terrifying as the monstrosity coming to 9 Dekalb Ave.

I don’t think the 11 Hoyt website has been updated in a while, because it still says “anticipated launch summer 2018.” Although, who knows what “launch” refers to. Maybe that’s when they’ll start selling units? Apartments at Brooklyn Point, the third City Point tower that’s currently under construction, went on sale a few weeks ago.

Units in 11 Hoyt will apparently start at $600k and go up to $4M, competing directly with Brooklyn Point. But have you seen the renderings of Brooklyn Point’s amenities? That rooftop pool…rock climbing wall…children’s playroom…those are going to be hard to beat. Yimby says that 11 Hoyt will also “include a pool, squash court, game room, children’s area, and an exercise room.” We’ll have to wait and see how the renderings stack up.

What do you think of these two upcoming additions to the Downtown Brooklyn skyline?

Scaffolding on Starbucks collapses, injuring three


Police Tape CautionPhoto by Eugene Zemlyanskiy

Scaffolding at a Starbucks on Court Street and Joralemon collapsed on Saturday, April 14th. Three people were sent to the hospital with minor injuries — fortunately nothing more. The NY Post has the full story.

I recently downloaded the Citizen mobile app, which sent me an alert shortly after it happened. A user had submitted a picture of the scene, but unfortunately I didn’t have the foresight to capture it for this website. I’m finding Citizen pretty useful though. It reminds me of Gothamist’s (now-defunct) Maps, but with much better UI.

Were you nearby the incident? What was your experience?

What will DoBro look like in ten years?


Storefronts on Fulton Mall in Downtown Brooklyn

The Bridge, on the plethora of chain stores opening in NYC (emphasis ours):

Last year, Brooklyn saw the biggest percentage increase in the number of chain stores of all the city’s boroughs, with 1,587 locations, a 3.1% increase from the previous year, according to a December report from Center for an Urban Future. The greatest concentration of these stores is in zip code 11201 (Brooklyn Heights/Downtown Brooklyn), which has 145 national retailer locations including City Point’s Target, Fulton Street’s H&M, and Sephora on Joralemon Street.

My wife and I have had long discussed what we think Downtown Brooklyn will look like in five to ten years. Her thought is that our neighborhood will most closely resemble current-day Tribeca.

I think I agree. At least, I think that’s what all these developers are hoping.

With a huge amount of high-priced luxury apartments, surrounded by chain stores. A massive shopping center along Fulton Street. Easy access to nearly every subway line, and just one stop into Manhattan on several lines. One can see why these developers are trying to turn Downtown Brooklyn into New York City’s Next Big Thing.

What do you think Downtown Brooklyn will look like in ten years? Will it resemble Tribeca? Or some other neighborhood? Let us know in the comments below.

A couple of award-winning buildings in our hood


Dekalb Market Hall in City Point

The Urban Land Institute New York (ULI NY) award ceremony was on April 10th, and a few of our very own buildings were among the winners (emphasis theirs):

Some of this year’s winners from Brooklyn included Dumbo-based Two Trees Development, which nabbed the Excellence in Market-Rate Housing Development award for their breathtaking 300 Ashland building, which is already being regarded as iconic as part of the BAM Cultural District.

Acadia Realty Trust and Washington Square Partners, which took the Excellence in Retail Development Award for their City Point project, 10 City Point just off the Fulton Mall and Flatbush. The development features among other retailers, a Target, a Century 21, a Trader Joe’s and the most happening food court in Brooklyn.

While I can’t personally speak to the “market-rate housing” award (sure they had 76 affordable housing units, but otherwise is >$2,000/month for a studio “market rate”?), the building is beautiful. Especially compared to the monstrosity that’s coming to 9 Dekalb Ave.

And the Excellence in Retail Development Award for City Point is well-earned. After opening last year, City Point quickly became the place in Brooklyn. Dekalb Market has all the food one could ever want, and the Target/Trader Joe’s/Alamo Drafthouse combo is killer.

But the development in Downtown Brooklyn has only just begun. And it remains to be seen how the neighborhood will turn out. Will all these developers be able to find renters for these high-priced luxury apartments? Or will we see prices drop, or units empty for years?

What do you think?

Construction near future(?) Willoughby Square Park


Construction near Willoughby Square Park

It came out last week that the promised park-above-a-parking-garage might not be going as planned.

Back in 2004, when this neighborhood was first rezoned (prompting the building frenzy that’s happening now), the city promised a one-acre public park right across from the new City Point structure. The city even approved tearing down rent stabilized buildings to make way for this new park slash parking garage.

But the construction company that won the bid (back in 2013) to complete the project couldn’t seem to get funding. So they just tore down the existing buildings…and here we are today.

You can see the edge of the perfectly cleared lot in the top right of the above picture. It’s just waiting for a park.

The construction pictured above is for…what? I don’t know. Is that supposed to be part of the park as well? Is it some new structure? Whatever it is, it’s actively being worked on.

If anyone knows anything, let us know.

Albee Square welcomes spring!


Albee Square, Downtown Brooklyn

Spring weather has finally arrived!

After a long beginning of spring, filled with snow day after snow day, we finally have 80 degree weather. People are out and about enjoying the sunshine, as seen here at Albee Square, next to City Point.

Behind is the old Dime Savings Bank, which will eventually be more retail. Originally, I had heard that Apple was scoping that spot out for an Apple Store, but it looks like they got impatient and headed up Flatbush Ave a few blocks instead. Although, I have no idea whether that rumor was even true in the first place.

Come 2020 (or so they say), we’ll be seeing a towering monstrosity of a building above the iconic dome. It’ll be the tallest — and most terrifying — building in Brooklyn.

But let’s not focus on that now. Let’s just enjoy this lovely weather. Right?