This Bushwick Apartment Building Is Remodeled After NYC Subway

MTA, take pointers! The subway-themed property at 132A Stanhope Street is unlike anything you’ve ever seen.

By Jeff Vasishta November 21, 2016

Was it the hip-hop pole dancing, the summer time waft of urine on the platforms or the manspreading on the seats that made developers of 132A Stanhope Street in Brooklyn want to take their commute home with them? Doubtful. The newly remodeled subway themed apartment building in booming Bushwick is unlike anything you have ever seen. Call it subway chic. It’s the trip that never ends.

As first reported in Gothamist, 132A Stanhope LLC took artistic license when redoing a two-story property they purchased almost a year ago. In fact, the MTA could probably take a few pointers. The design, though, isn’t the quirky whim of a trustafarian hipster. A little digging unearths that Brooklyn development colossus Yoel Goldman—the man behind All Year Management, known for a major role in developing part of the nearby Rheingold site—signed the mortgage as the property’s manager.

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In a generally low-income area Bushwick, unique buildings such as this one make sense for a developer to sink some cash into. It gives the neighborhood character, a sense of humor and a break from bodegas and Burger Kings. Clearly, a look at the building shows a high end renovation. A non-functioning old school clock on the exterior, subway styled windows and even train tracks running up the side of the house make this a neighborhood talking point. The back of the house looks like the entrance to the driver’s compartment. The entrances to each apartment resemble the cautionary yellow lines on a platform before the tracks. There’s some striking tile work inside, notably the fictional station name in the hallway. But by far, the biggest attention grabber is the accurate map of every subway line in the vicinity depicted across the entire right-side wall, and finished off with a bright red circle proclaiming, “YOU ARE HERE.”

Themed on the Brooklyn subway, the property is not without controversy. Amateur cartographer, Josh Berman, 30, who is also a lawyer, claims he designed the map now painted on the side of the house. He told DNA Info that he came up with the design seven years ago while in  “boring” classes in law school—and he never gave permission rights to the building’s owners. The map took him almost a year to perfect, he said, and currently lives online on Wikipedia Creative Commons, which means it can be used for free if he gets credit, according to the licensing information.

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The combination of corrugated tin like ceilings and caged industrial lighting has a certain Prisoner Cell Block H quality. Will it drive residents crazy after a while—as they crave earth tones, soft fabrics accent lighting? The building’s broker leasing the eight apartments is aptly the Subway Realty Group.

No word on whether the rent will get a 9 percent hike every year—like the subway.

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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