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  7<copyright>Copyright 2009</copyright>
  8<lastBuildDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 16:30:00 -0500</lastBuildDate>
 14<title>Monday Blogwrap</title>
 15<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="3691398917_371e8bb060.jpg" src="" width="500" height="319" vspace = "6"/><br />
 16<em>Photo by <a href="">JNW Photography</a> from the<a href=""> Brownstoner Flickr Pool</a>.</em><br />
 17<a href="">City Council Approves Demolition of PS 133</a> [WGPA]<br />
 18<a href="">G Train from Park Slope to Williamsburg, Greenpoint and LI City</a> [OTBKB]<br />
 19<a href="">Two-Alarm Fire On Wythe Avenue In Williamsburg</a> [Gothamist]<br />
 20<a href="">Save Coney Island’s Online Petition: Final Chance to Sign</a> [ATZ]<br />
 21<a href="">None Shall Pass!</a> [Kensington, Brooklyn]<br />
 22<a href="">Fire at Rosenwach</a> [Brooklyn 11211]</p>]]></description>
 26<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 16:30:00 -0500</pubDate>
 29<title>Closing Bell: River Cafe Sues City Over Falls Project</title>
 30<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="river-cafe-waterfalls-0709.jpg" src="" width="500" height="322" vspace="5"/><br />
 31Last year's public art project known as The Waterfalls was a huge success in terms of publicity and tourism but it didn't work out so well for the owner of one Brooklyn institution that had the misfortune to be located right next to one of the four installations by Danish artist Olafur Eliasson. River Cafe owner Buzzt O'Keeffe is suing the city's Public Art Fund and Eliasson for $3 million in damages for the corrosive effect it says the spray from the falls under the Brooklyn Bridge had on the River Cafe restaurant and its surrounding gardens. The litany of problems cited by O'Keefe includes electrical problems, damaged aluminum and steel parts and destroyed plant life.<br />
 32<a href="">River Cafe Sues Over Alleged Waterfalls Damage</a> [NY Post]</p>]]></description>
 36<category>Closing Bell</category>
 37<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 16:00:12 -0500</pubDate>
 40<title>Development Watch: Love Lane Mews Already</title>
 41<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="love-lane-mews-0709.jpg" src="" width="500" height="281" vspace="5"/><br />
 42It's been almost 2 1/2 years since the Love Lane Mews development was announced and the high-end conversion remains far from done. Some of that delay may be attributable to internal issues—like a parting of ways of the original partners. Beyond that, what's the hold-up?<br />
 43<a href="">Development Watch: Love Lane Mews Creeping Along</a> [Brownstoner]<br />
 44<a href="">Love Lane Mews Partner Gets Bought Out</a> [Brownstoner] <a style="text-decoration:none" href=",+Brooklyn&ie=UTF8&z=15&ll=40.697266,-73.978543&spn=0.015878,0.044074&om=1&iwloc=addr" target="_blank"><font color="#FF00FF">GMAP</font></a><br />
 45<a href="" target="_blank">Love Lane Mews Partner Gets Bought Out</a> [Brownstoner] <br />
 46<a href="" target="_blank">Development Watch: Love Lane Mews with Skylight Views</a> [Brownstoner]<br />
 47<a href="" target="_blank">Development Watch: Love Lane Mews Floorplans Revealed</a> [Brownstoner]</p>]]></description>
 52<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 14:30:58 -0500</pubDate>
 55<title>Streetlevel: Lily &amp; Fig Opens on Franklin</title>
 56<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="lily-and-fig-0709.jpg" src="" width="160" height="120" align="right" hspace="3" vspace="2"/>After a year or so delays, a new pastry shop by the name of Lily & Fig has finally opened at 727 Franklin Avenue between Sterling Place and Park Place in Crown Heights. The news comes to us via the blog I Love Franklin Avenue, which sampled a couple of the shop's creations and reports that they "did not disappoint." Lily & Fig opens at 7:30 a.m. <br />
 57<a href="">Lily & Fig Open</a> [ILFA] <a style="text-decoration:none" href=",+Brooklyn&sll=40.671509,-73.971763&sspn=0.007503,0.013819&ie=UTF8&ll=40.674536,-73.956828&spn=0.007502,0.013819&z=16&iwloc=A" target="_blank"><font color="#FF00FF">GMAP</font></a></p>]]></description>
 61<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 14:00:28 -0500</pubDate>
 65<title>House of the Day: 113 Garfield Place Revisited</title>
 66<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="113-Garfield-Place-0409.jpg" src="" width="500" height="228" vspace="5"/><br />
 67The three-story brownstone at 113 Garfield Place in Park Slope was a House of the Day back in April when it hit the market with a price tag of $1,800,000; since then, the price has been reduced twice, most recently a couple of week ago to the current price of $1,675,000. The question is whether this will be enough: After all, 126 votes were submitted to the pricing widget at the time and the magic number that popped out was $1,524,906. Based on the comments, the layout and renovation choices may be holding it back. Has anyone been inside?<br />
 68<a href="">113 Garfield Place</a> [Corcoran] <a style="text-decoration:none" href=",+Brooklyn&sll=40.675382,-73.980496&sspn=0.007632,0.014355&ie=UTF8&ll=40.675382,-73.980496&spn=0.007632,0.014355&t=h&z=16&iwloc=A" target="_blank"><font color="#FF00FF">GMAP</font></a> <a style="text-decoration:none" href="" target="_blank"><font color="#000099">P*Shark</font></a><br />
 69<a href="">House of the Day: 113 Garfield Place</a> [Brownstoner]</p>
 71<p><script type="text/javascript">var basePrice=1675000;</script><br />
 72<script type="text/javascript">initPriceWidget (thisInstanceId, basePrice);</script></p>]]></description>
 76<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 13:10:08 -0500</pubDate>
 79<title>Co-op of the Day: 1 Plaza Street West, #8C</title>
 81<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="1-plaza-street-west-0709.jpg" src="" width="500" height="163" vspace="5"/><br />
 82This one-bedroom at 1 Plaza Street West is a classic and, not surprisingly, we're liking it. It's got solid prewar cred and the views, especially from that corner bedroom, are downright sweet. The asking price is $495,000, not cheap for a one-bedroom in Park Slope, to be sure, especially when the same line is <a href="">for sale</a> on the 16th floor for just $4,000 more. Then again, this location and building are hard to beat if the Slope is your thing.<br />
 83<a href="">1 Plaza Street West, #8C</a> [Douglas Elliman] <a style="text-decoration:none" href=",+Brooklyn&sll=37.579413,-95.712891&sspn=33.420662,41.484375&ie=UTF8&t=h&z=16" target="_blank"><font color="#FF00FF">GMAP</font></a> <a style="text-decoration:none" href="" target="_blank"><font color="#000099">P*Shark</font></a></p>
 85<p><script type="text/javascript">var basePrice=499000;</script><br />
 86<script type="text/javascript">initPriceWidget (thisInstanceId, basePrice);</script></p>]]></description>
 90<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 12:40:41 -0500</pubDate>
 93<title>Half-Stake in 370 Clinton Sells—For Half the Listing Price</title>
 94<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="370-Clinton-Street-Brooklyn-0709.jpg" src="" width="97" height="140" align="right" hspace="3" vspace="2"/><strike>This one just seems like a big ouch: 370 Clinton Street, the six-family house that a buyer plunked down $2,650,000 for last September, traded hands again for $1,325,000 in a deal recorded last week in <a href="" target="_blank">public records</a>. The <a href="" target="_blank">House of the Day</a> writeup on this in January went as follows: "A victim of the downturn? Given the timing and circumstances of this new listing at 370 Clinton Street in Cobble Hill, it sounds like the seller is in trouble. She closed on the 6,000-square-foot house last September for $2,650,000 and in the last four months has gutted the interior and commissioned complete architectural drawings for a planned make-over. The plans are part of the package for anyone willing to come up with the asking price of $2,995,000. It is a pretty exciting opportunity for someone who wants to create a living space from scratch: great location, beautiful shell. The only question: Price."</strike> <em><strong>Update</strong>: As pointed out by commenters below, it was a 50 percent interest in the house—and not the whole house—that sold for $1,325,000.</em><br />
 95<a href="" target="_blank">House of the Day: 370 Clinton Street</a> [Brownstoner] <a style="text-decoration:none" href=",+Brooklyn&sll=40.673022,-73.97687&sspn=0.011555,0.01339&g=300+Garfield+Place,+Brooklyn&ie=UTF8&t=h&z=16&iwloc=addr" target="_blank"><font color="#FF00FF">GMAP</font></a> </p>]]></description>
100<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 11:30:38 -0500</pubDate>
103<title>EDC Talks Latest Red Hook Waterfront Plans</title>
104<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="atlantic%20basin.jpg" src="" width="500" height="342" vspace="6"/><br />
105<a href="">A View From the Hook</a> has a recap of the EDC's presentation last week to the Columbia Waterfront Neighborhood Association about the city's new plans for the Red Hook waterfront, which were first <a href="">unveiled</a> late last year. The rejiggered designs replaced grander schemes to install hotels, restaurants and other new developments on the waterfront, plans that died after the Red Hook Container Port was allowed to keep its space. The city said last week that it intends to run a ferry from the waterfront to Governor's Island (although this aspect of the plan was announced in January, it was absent from the EDC's presentation to the community in May) and let Water Taxi use Atlantic Basin to moor its boats. The blogger writes that there was significant concern among meeting attendees about the city's plans for Pier 11 because it's feared that its lease to beer distributor Phoenix Beverages will bring heavy truck traffic and, thus, congestion and pollution to the neighborhood. Another point of contention, according to the writeup, is that the EDC is sounding iffy on plans to ensure public access at Atlantic Basin. The EDC's timetable for all this stuff is unclear. <br />
106<a href="">Future of Red Hook and Columbia Street Waterfront</a> [A View From the Hook]<br />
107<a href="">Rejuggling of Plans for Red Hook Waterfront</a> [Brownstoner]<br />
108<em>Photo by <a href="">spiffae</a>.</em></p>]]></description>
112<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 11:15:30 -0500</pubDate>
116<title>Ellerbe Becket&apos;s Arena to be Less Ugly Than Rendered?</title>
117<description><![CDATA[<p><a href=""><img alt="atlantic-yards-renderings-0609.jpg" src="" width="128" height="120" align="right" hspace="3" vspace="2"/></a>This one got lost in the long-weekend shuffle: Last week Crain's <a href="" target="_blank">reported</a> that the Ellerbe Becket <a href="" target="_blank">renderings</a> for the Atlantic Yards arena "do not reflect" Bruce Ratner's vision for the project and that he is still committed to a "world-class design." According to the article, the renderings that we've seen, like those at right (click for larger version), are not necessarily representative of what the value-engineered arena may end up looking like. We'll see. <br />
118<a href="" target="_blank">Ratner Promises Atlantic Yards Arena Redesign</a> [Crain's]<br />
119<a href="" target="_blank">More Renderings of New Arena Design</a> [Brownstoner]</p>]]></description>
122<category>Atlantic Yards</category>
123<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 11:00:12 -0500</pubDate>
126<title>Williamsburg Ranks #1 in City&apos;s Stalled-Site Sweepstakes</title>
128<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="burg%20devo%20site%20w%20toxic%20avenger.jpg" src="" width="500" height="375" vspace="6"/><br />
129This morning the Post <a href="">has a story</a> on the construction-site blight that has pockmarked Brooklyn. DOB stats show Brooklyn has the most stalled construction sites of any of borough, with Williamsburg/Greenpoint leading the tally among neighborhoods. The DOB has identified 63 stalled sites in Brooklyn, 18 of which are in Williamsburg-Greenpoint. By contrast, Manhattan has a total of 39 stalled sites, the Bronx and Queens each have 14, and Staten Island has 13 all together. Residents and the DOB are concerned about safety and quality-of-life issues associated with the stalled sites. "The problem we're having now is that we're starting to get squatters in these buildings and lots," said Williamsburg neighborhood activist Philip DePaolo, who compared the current-day situation in the neighborhood to the Bronx in the late '70s. "Blight draws crime, and if you have blocks and blocks of vacant lots with no people, that creates a problem." In February the DOB created a stalled-sites unit to try and keep the lots safe while nothing is doing. The City Council, meanwhile, has drawn up a bill that would give developers incentives—like granting unlimited extensions on permits—for maintaining safety at their no-go lots.  <br />
130<a href="">'Lots' of Woe in W'Burg</a> [NY Post]<br />
131<em>Photo by <a href="">danwitz</a>.</em></p>]]></description>
135<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 10:30:58 -0500</pubDate>
138<title>HMS: Prices Continue to Fall in Brooklyn</title>
139<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="for-sale-sign-0709.jpg" src="" width="139" height="118" align="right" hspace="3" vspace="2"/>The appraisal firm <a href="">HMS Associates</a> came out with its second-quarter market report last week and, unsurprisingly, it showed that prices are down from both last quarter and the same period last year. The firm says the average price in Brooklyn in the second quarter of 2009 was $548,560, 18 percent less than $670,419 in the same period last year. The average price in the <a href="">first quarter</a> was $589,135. While there was an uptick in sales volume in the second quarter as compared to the first—545, an 8 percent increase—there were half as many sales as in Q2 2008, when 1,145 were recorded. Prices were down in almost every neighborhood tracked by the report. The biggest losers were Dumbo/Downtown Brooklyn/Boerum Hill, where prices fell 22 percent to $754,000, and Sheepshead Bay, where prices also fell 22 percent, to $263,200. Click through for the full press release. <br />
140<a href="">Getting a Jump on the Q1 Post-Mortems</a> [Brownstoner]<br />
141<em>Photo by <a href="">the stella</a></em></p>]]></description>
146<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 10:15:10 -0500</pubDate>
149<title>Tough Slog for Buyers Seeking Jumbo Mortgages</title>
150<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="mortgage%20rate%20chart.jpg" src="" width="500" height="246" vspace="6"/><br />
151From this weekend's <a href="" target="_blank">Times</a>, a story about the difficulties of obtaining a nonconforming jumbo loan in the post-meltdown market: "'Two years ago these loans could be accommodated very easily, but today the requirements to get those loans are much more stringent,' said David Adamo, the chief executive of Luxury Mortgage in Stamford, Conn. Mr. Adamo likened the current mortgage market to a barbell, with pockets of availability for borrowers at both ends of the income spectrum but less for those in between. Those with annual incomes up to about $250,000 have access to mortgages insured by the Federal Housing Administration, while the very affluent can obtain loans from private banking institutions. For borrowers with household incomes between $250,000 and $500,000, however, mortgages are not as easy to get, Mr. Adamo said. 'These people are living in places where starter homes might be $1 million,' he said, 'and it’s really affecting them.' Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will accept only loans below $729,500 in the highest-cost markets like New York City and northern New Jersey. For mortgages larger than that, mortgage brokers and bankers must find other investors who want to take the loans." The story talks about how borrowers have to go to community banks like Astoria Federal and Hudson City Savings Bank to get jumbos, and that qualifying for the loans at these institutions has become much more difficult. <br />
152<a href="" target="_blank">Securing a Jumbo: No Small Task</a> [NY Times]</p>]]></description>
156<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 10:00:44 -0500</pubDate>
160<title>Brooklyn Foreclosures Back Up Again in the 2nd Quarter</title>
161<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="brooklyn-foreclosures-Q209.jpg" src="" width="500" height="329" vspace="5"/><br />
162For a while now, the Brooklyn foreclosure statistics have seemed suspiciously low based on the anecdotal evidence we were hearing about activity in some of the lower-income parts of the borough; the first quarter of 2009, at a total of 39 foreclosures, in particular, seemed too low to be true. Well, now the official stats, like the ones just released from <a href=""></a> are starting to catch up. In the second quarter, the number of foreclosures in Brooklyn increased 92 percent to 71. While large in percentage terms, the total number was still the lowest among the outer boroughs (Queens is still far and away the worst off, with 610 foreclosures in Q2) and 12 less than in the fourth quarter of 2008. Overall, these absolute numbers still feel low, but maybe it just takes such a long time for the problems to make it to the point where they are officially recorded as being in foreclosure.</p>]]></description>
166<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 09:30:21 -0500</pubDate>
169<title>Open Thread</title>
171<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="open-thread-icon.jpg" src="" width="500" height="36" vspace="4"/></p>]]></description>
174<category>Open Thread</category>
175<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 09:14:49 -0500</pubDate>
178<title>Rosenwach Fire The Morning After</title>
179<description><![CDATA[<p><img alt="north-9th-fire-0709.jpg" src="" width="500" height="333" vspace="5"/><br />
180On the night of July 4, Williamsburg got its own pyrotechnics show, only this year it wasn't over the East River—it was at the site of the <a href="">Rosenwach Wood Tank Company</a> on Wythe Avenue, where a two-alarm fire broke out at around 9 p.m. According to commenters on Gothamist, the blaze started on the company's North 9th Street lot where the company constructs roof-top water tanks. According to two local blogs, a group of twenty-somethings ("white kids in the twenties," according to <a href="">11211</a> or "hipster douchebags," according to <a href="">NYShitty</a>) were setting off roman candles right next to the lot. In addition to stacks of wood, there was a large pile of sawdust which would have made quite a combo with a stray firework. The photo above shows how the site looked yesterday and the video on the jump shows some live action from the night-of.<br />
181<a href="">Two-Alarm Fire On Wythe Avenue In Williamsburg</a> [Gothamist]<br />
182<a href="">Video: Williamsburg Fire</a> [Flickr] <a style="text-decoration:none" href=",+Brooklyn&ie=UTF8&ll=40.722006,-73.958631&spn=0.007497,0.013819&z=16&iwloc=A" target="_blank"><font color="#FF00FF">GMAP</font></a></p>]]></description>
187<pubDate>Mon, 06 Jul 2009 09:00:14 -0500</pubDate>