Finding The Balance Of Gentrification And Preservation On Brooklyns Fourth
Brooklyn’s Fourth Avenue has been transforming for decades—trading in rundown delis and gas stations for condos, offices and high-class retail—but not everyone’s a fan of rising real estate prices. There’s now an increasing focus on a balance between open-market forces and preserving the strip’s importance and feel for longtime residents.
After the controversial 2003 rezoning and 2008 financial crisis, the strip saw an uptick in high-end development, raising median rental prices for Park Slope and Gowanus from $2,660 and $2,400 to $2,850 and $2,950, respectively, AM New York reports.
Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce EVP Andrew Hoan says the chamber’s pushing to preserve ground-floor spaces for local businesses—leading to new local eateries like Hey Hey Canteen.
Civic organization Fourth on Fourth Avenue has sponsored cleanups, tree plantings and new bench installations, but has also fought to preserve cherished buildings—such as the Pacific Branch Brooklyn Public Library—from being sold and demolished.
Some developers have been making the effort to preserve the neighborhood fabric with smaller, brick structures. Andrew believes there’s still a long way to go, insisting there needs to be “an entire investment in that community to make it bright.” [AMNY]