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One Of Brooklyn’s Best Kept Secrets—Prospect Lefferts Gardens—Is Now Officially “Hot”

The Prospect Park bordering neighborhood is attracting new residents and developers alike.

By Jeff Vasishta January 6, 2017
310 Clarkson Avenue. Photo courtesy of Tectonic

Home of the hipster, gentrification, and the original “hot” neighborhood Williamsburg, Brooklyn is the borough other places aspire to be like. Kind of like basketball players—think of Michael Jordan. In 2016, the “hottest” Brooklyn neighborhood, according to StreetEasy, was the always simmering Fort Green. However, perhaps the biggest surprise was that not far behind was Prospect-Lefferts Gardens.

According to StreetEasy, PLG (4th in NYC) and “Prospect Park South” (8th)—the area south of Prospect Park to Beverly Road, from Coney Island to Ocean Avenues from west to east—are in demand as renters and home buyers scan places close to the park where they can get the biggest bang for their buck. That said, by most Americans’ standards, the neighborhoods are hardly cheap. In 2016, the median asking price in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens was $1,375,000, while in Prospect Park South it was $773,500, StreetEasy found. In both areas, the median asking rent in 2016 was roughly the same: $2,003 in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens versus $2,095 in Prospect Park South.

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Once referred to as “Brooklyn’s best-kept secret,” the traditionally Caribbean neighborhood, with its 800 designated historic homes, has been an increasing draw to residents and developers alike because of its many transport connections (three subway stops) and lax building codes regarding height restrictions. It’s also considerably more affordable compared to high priced park side neighbors Windsor Terrace, Park Slope, and Prospect Heights.

New York Yimby shows a slew of new development happening in the area, including a seven story, 38-unit mixed use building at 1930 Bedford Avenue by developer Nik Lavrinoff with Z Architecture, the architect and a 170-unit development at 310 Clarkson Avenue in Prospect Lefferts Gardens between Nostrand and New York avenues, along the border with East Flatbush. Hudson Companies is the developer who are also developing the towering The Parkline, a 254-unit rental, at 626 Flatbush Avenue, near Prospect Park, which soars 23 stories, way above the generally low lying area, a source of contention from community groups.

“There were a lot of concerns about this building changing the neighborhood,” Alison Novak, a Hudson principal told the New York Times. But because the Parkline has (51) affordable apartments, as well as market-rate ones, concerns about shadows should be secondary, Ms. Novak said, instilling a degree of spin. “I would lean toward: It’s more important to have a mixed-income building in a neighborhood that’s experiencing economic pressure.”

RelatedBrooklyn’s Gowanus to become one of New York’s hottest neighborhoods

Any doubt about the clientele to which The Parkside is speaking should be dismissed with a check of rents it’s charging, which are right in line with other luxury rental buildings.  One-bedrooms start at $2,775 a month, but with a concession of a month of free rent on a 13-month lease, the monthly net price works out to $2,561. It’s around a $1,000 more per month than one-bedroom apartments in neighboring Crown Heights, which admittedly are in older building without the amenities.

“I’ve always seen this neighborhood as a bit of a doppelgänger for the Upper West Side in terms of the built environment,” Tom Anderson, a managing member of Anderson Associates, co- developers of Lincoln Park Apartments, a 133-unit rental at 33 Lincoln Road told the New York Times, comparing Flatbush Avenue to Broadway. Perhaps, the neighborhoods will soon have more in common than just their historic buildings.

 

Jeff Vasishta

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Jeff Vasishta

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Jeff Vasishta

Jeff is a writer, husband and father but not necessarily in that order. As a music journalist he counts Prince, Beyonce and Quincy Jones amongst those he’s interviewed. He's also owned and flipped homes in Brooklyn, NJ, CT and PA.

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