Friday, April 27, 2007


The New York City Landmarks Commission this week granted landmark protection to 472 buildings in Crown Heights North, in the area bounded by Pacific Street to the north, Dean Street, Prospect Place and St. Mark's Avenue to the south, Bedford Avenue to the west and Kingston Avenue to the east. Built mainly between the 1860s and 1930s, buildings in the district feature Italianate, neo-Grec, Romanesque, Queen Anne, Georgian, Renaissance, Colonial, Medieval, Tudor Revival, Mediterranean and Art Deco styles created by several prominent architects.

A Landmarks Commission statement called the designation "the cornerstone for establishing similar districts in the neighborhood" meaning the district is the first of several in Crown Heights North to receive landmark designation, which eventually will extend to 1,400 buildings.

Unlike other brownstone Brooklyn nabes, Crown Heights' residential architecture is largely unaltered since the last development wave in the 1930s. In a April 24 article announcing the pending landmark designation,The New York Times says "lack of money in the 1970s and 1980s" when "no one had the cash to make bad choices" are responsible for the preservation of exquisitely detailed row houses, attached houses, churches, mansions and apartment houses.

Some Crown Heights residents, through Brooklyn blogs, express concern about the practical impact of landmark designation. According to the Commission, designation will not result in higher taxes, nor restrict an owner's right to sell his/her property. Also, the designation does not require property owners to notify the Commission to perform basic maintenance.

Landmark designation also may increase property value, according to a 2003 New York City Independent Budget Office study. The report concludes: "Although prices for historic properties have at times increased less rapidly than for similar properties outside historic districts, overall price appreciation from 1975 through 2002 was greater for houses inside historical districts."

The Landmarks Commission highlighted several buildings as outstanding examples of the district's "marvelous ensemble of mansions, churches, row houses and freestanding residences," including:

* 1200 Pacific Street (designed by Montrose Morris, 1891)
* The Dean Sage Residence, 839 St, Mark's Avenue, designed by Russell Sturgis in 1870
* 889 St. Mark's Avenue, designed by P.J. Lauritzen, in 1904
* 907-33 Prospect Place, designed by Matthew Del Gaudio in 1933

Pictures of Crown Heights North.


Crown Heights Strong said...

Awesome article! However why cant parts of Crown Heights South be landmarked?

Anonymous said...

The Jewish community will never get together to do that.

David said...

Hey realatorian,

this is the first article that really gets the full picture.

A CHN resident said...

I have been a resident of Crown Heights North for all my life and today I celebrate the fact that my neighborhood is land marked and will not be affected by tall high rises; the community will always remain a beautiful village if you may.

Anonymous said...

I think I new name should be givin for Crown heights North maybe a new hip name like CONO or NOCO, and crown heights south should be named SOCO OR COSO.

Just a thought....

Heightzer said...

Realatorian: I love ur blog and the pictures - but we need some new post every day!