Friday, October 31, 2014

Wine And Food Tasting Event Coming to Sunset Park

There is a wine tasting event dubbed the Brooklyn Crush Wine and Food Festival coming to Industry City herein Sunset park where you can get a taste of many different wines and foods from many different sponsors. The event will take place on November 15, 2014. There will be two separate sessions at 3 and 8 PM. One held in the afternoon and another one in the evening, each lasting three hours. Tickets for the event can be had online at this website which also offers details. Tickets are $79 each for each event. It's a bit steep for some Sunset park residents. But if you're into wines and want to sample many different brands and food from many restaurants in Brooklyn it may be worth your time.


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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Hollywood Comes to Sunset Park, Sort Of..

Filmrise new headquarters in Industry City

The website Commercial  Observer informs us that Filmrise a distributor of digital media has moved into Industry City. There are already several other film and video production companies that are located in Sunset Park and Filmrise is the latest addition to the roster. On their website we have a good indication of the breath of their offerings and announcements of acquisitions to digital rights of some iconic productions. As more companies move into the industrial part of the neighborhood we will be seeing more and more of this stuff. Of course this is clearly more an indication of the gentrification and commercial expansion that is happening in the neighborhood. Filmrise will be joining other film and video production companies located here such as Holystone StudiosShoe Box Story and others. We are living in interesting times in Sunset Park these days..



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More Signs of Gefntrification In Sunset Park, Losing Section 8

DNAinfo/Nikhita Venugopal

The website has a piece on the recent decision by E&M  Associates which owns a lot of housing stock in Sunset Park to not renew their section 8 housing contract when it expires. E&M has a total of 24 buildings with 270 units. The decision appears to be purely an economic one as rents on the average in the neighborhood now fetch from $2000 to $2100 for an average sized apartment in the neighborhood. This is in keeping with the rents in the Greenwood Heights section of Sunset Park which are slightly higher and signs that the gentrification wave is reaching southern Sunset Park. Opting out of section 8 housing would give E&M the opportunity to get higher rental income from their properties. It may also be that due to the rising real estate values they are considering getting rid of some of their properties... READ MORE HERE..


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A tourists' Guide To Sunset Park

The website RACKED.COM  has a tourist guide titled "Thrifting, Bowling and Dim Sum in Sunset Park" obviously written for outsiders who don't live in Sunset Park. However, even Sunset Parkers or recent newcomers to the nabe might enjoy the selection of spots to visit and drop by. How many local residents have actually taken a tour of Green Wood Cemetery? My parents are buried there, so I go there quite often. The article includes none other than our own Pacificana Restaurant featured on our website. Take a peek at the piece and make your own plans.


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Monday, October 27, 2014

Sunset Park's Industry City Makes The News, Again.

AM NY that newspaper you get for free when you take it out of one of those bins when getting on the subway has an article on the impact on the local Sunset Park economy by the Industry City complex titled "Business is booming at Sunset Park's Industry City".  The article begins;
The rows of unassuming, concrete buildings give little hint of the area's rich history as a hub of early 20th century industrial progress, nor do they quite convey Industry City's recent resurgence as Brooklyn's new home base for creative and innovative companies. But it's there. A convergence of past, present and future -- right in Sunset Park.

Startups, manufacturers, design firms, event planners and food makers have been flocking to the 16-building complex, formerly known as Bush Terminal, since it began undergoing a massive renovation last year.

What is clear is that Sunset Park is faring far better than other Brooklyn neighborhoods. Despite the rather sluggish economy everywhere else, the impact of capital being invested in the neighborhood especially at Industry City is having a substantial effect on the rest of the neighborhood.  There are plans afoot to build an even larger market at Industry City than the one at Chelsea in Manhattan. And let's not leave out the investment being made at the Brooklyn Army Terminal also in Sunset Park that is seeing a comeback of Artist space for artists as well and an influx of other enterprises into that complex as the City pours more money into expanding and renovating the place. We mustn't leave out the massive influx of mainland Chinese money which is also pouring into the Chinatown section of our neighborhood with new hotel construction adding to an already high concentration of hotels and a massive development being planned for 62nd street and 8th Avenue.

Along with all this economic activity we are seeing an acceleration of the gentrification process in the neighborhood. If you've been keeping track of rental and real estate prices you are seeing apartments that mere a year ago went for $1500 a month to an average of $2000 a month today. Real estate prices have gone up 21% in the last two years and we can expect an acceleration of that process as properties are being bought up not only for residential purposes but as an investment. All in all we are seeing a very quick transformation happening in the neighborhood right before our very eyes. Three areas are the center of this economic boom that the neighborhood is experiencing, Chinatown, Industry City and The Brooklyn Army Terminal. As space becomes scarce at these three locations their periphery will also see a resurgence in the next couple of years as well. Unless the national economy collapses we are in for a very heady ride. Fasten your seat belts folks. If you think the change in our neighborhood has been heady dizzying these last couple of years, you ain't seen nothing yet...

Related: Massive Development Planned For Sunset Park
             Art is back in Sunset Park
             Sunset Park is now "Trendy" accoding to RE marketing..



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Thursday, October 23, 2014

A Sunset Park Story Telling Event Tomorrrow (Friday)

The website DNAinfo New York has a piece on an upcoming event in which many local artists and residents will participate in telling their stories in a Sunset Park themed. The event will take place at the Recreation Center which is located inside Sunset Park (The park itself). According to0 the website;
"The Five Boro Story Project is teaming up with the Laundromat Project’s "Create Change" program, an initiative that seeks to connect communities and artists, for “Stories at Sunset,” which will take place from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Sunset Park Recreation Center located at 43rd Street and Seventh Avenue."

 So, if you haven't heard about it and you have time to kill by all means drop in. The event is FREE.


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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Art is back in Sunset Park

After a short lapse art is back in Sunset Park. When Industry City turned over ownership and development plans many artists who had rented space there had to look for other less expensive digs due to thee raise in rents. For a while Sunset Park was loosing creative people to other parts and other boroughs. Now it appears they are making a comeback, this time at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. The local NYC channel NY1 has a video covering this story on their website..


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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Move Over Godiva Sunset Park is King of Chocolate

The Daily News has an article describing how Sunset Park is becoming the center of gourmet food manufacturing, including Li-Lac Chocolates a premier chocolatier with stores in Manhattan and producing their chocolates right here in our nabe. Much of this activity centers around Industry City and in some cases you can go to some of the outlet stores located in the buildings and get tours of the factory areas.Last year another major chocolatier, Jacques Torres moved it's manufacturing facilities to a 40,000 sq. ft facility at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. As things start to progress and Industry City  develops it will be a dinning and shopping target for the well to do and people with cash to spare. As of now there is also a French Pastry manufacturer also with an outlet next to their production facilities, Colson Patisserie. Also in the complex nearby is Blue Marble Ice Cream another gourmet treat. So as far as gourmet food goes Sunset Park is becoming the destination in Brooklyn. Things are changing quickly in the nabe and it's not just Mexican and Chinese food.


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Monday, October 20, 2014

Sunset Park is Hollywood East For Another Day

If you happened to be strolling along 8th Avenue near 49th street this morning you saw the movie equipment trucks unloading their equipment. With many major films  such as "Saturday Night Fever", "Crocodile Dundee, "Cop Out" and others having been partially shot in Sunset Park. Our nabe has been for sometime been a prime location for feature films and TV series set in New York. The latest add to the mix is an independent production of a film tentatively named "Feral Mix". I am not sure what the subject matter of the film is or what genre. In any case it's good to see the neighborhood and many of it's locations being used this way. We will have to wait until it hits the theaters to see if we recognize any scenes that jog our memories. 


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Friday, October 17, 2014

Massive Development Planned For Sunset Park

An article on another development  in downtown Brooklyn had a link to this story that somehow went under my radar in The Brooklyn Paper. Apparently someone has big plans for the empty lot next to the N train station on 62nd street and 8th Avenue. The lot recently changed hands for it's previous owner for, get this, an astounding $51.5 million. That kind of outside money coming into the neighborhood is what is changing the dynamics of the hood. With mainland Chinese money being heavily invested in New York City (The recent sale of the Waldorf Astoria to the Chinese for example) it would only be natural that one of the places it would end up would be what has become New York's premiere Chinatown our own neighborhood of Sunset Park. According to the article the plans are for a "Plans call for a three-story, Chelsea Market-style retail space to cover the entire site, which is covers an area about as big as three football fields. Rising from that base will be a 150-room hotel standing about 10 stories, two 15-story residential towers with a combined 350 apartments, and an office tower standing 17 stories". Additionally plans also call for "A public green space and sculpture garden will cover exposed sections of the retail building’s roof, and a library, computer lab, and space for a pre-kindergarten program will serve the area’s burgeoning immigrant population". Nothing this massive has ever been done recently in the neighborhood. With all the additional money coming into the Industry City area on the other side of 3rd Avenue we will see a completely different neighborhood in the next ten years if not sooner increasing a process of gentrification that has snowballed into an ever increasing acceleration in the last two years. The question for our neighborhood is whether to oppose it, accept it or ignore it. The only two places where we can make our voices heard in whichever direction you fall is The community board and our local City council member Carlos Menchaca. Notice that none of this was in the news and most of us in the neighborhood are the last to hear about it. And yes, the plans include yet another Hotel in the neighborhood. It might be good for tourists but I'm not sure about the rest of us. I have to wonder what other projects are being planned in the neighborhood that we are unaware of. With billions in Chinese investment money looking for a place to park you can rest assured this neighborhood will get a chunk of it. Trying to stop it will be difficult for us peasants with limited resources when reality and history shows that "money talks". Hold on to your seatbelts, we're in for an interesting ride. I urge all readers of this blog who live in the neighborhood to pick up the phone and call the community board to voice your opinions and throw in Menchaca's office as well, don't let him off the hook. To read more about this you can read the whole article right here.


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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Crime TV Series Shoots Sunset Park

If you were walking on 5th Avenue around 51st street earlier today you may have seen lots of film crew trucks parked on on side of the avenue for several blocks. They were shooting a tv show apparently called Crime in the neighborhood. Since I am not a tv watcher I have no clue who they are. I hope though they put the neighborhood in a good eye. This is just the latest of many shows and movies that have been shot in the neighborhood. If anyone can comment on the nature of this show all comments are welcome below.


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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Spanish Entrepreneurs Hit Sunset Park, Live in a "Mansion".

The tech website has a story about a group of Spanish entrepreneurs taking an intensive course on entrepreneurship right here in Sunset Park. The title of the post "A bunch of Spanish entrepreneurs are living in a mansion in Sunset Park"  was what interested me as I wasn't aware there were any mansions in this neighborhood. If the above picture is any indication someone has a sense of humor. Nevertheless the article is rather interesting to read and indicative of how Sunset Park is slowly attracting High Tech to the neighborhood at Industry City and the surrounding buildings and attracting a lot of attention, not just in the city but from abroad as well. 


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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Party to Fight Gentrification

The website Brownstoner posted an announcement for a party to be held at Irish Haven this October 18. The party is to raise funds by the Sunset Park Landmarks Committee. 

In an email, Lynn Massimo, the committee’s project manager, said that both preservation and affordable housing are important to the future of the neighborhood. “Together we, the community groups and our electeds, must keep Sunset Park viable for a diverse population. That doesn’t have just one answer. It has multiple answers. Affordable housing, safe streets, cultural diversity, economic diversity, local jobs, and yes, preservation of historic rowhouses,” she said.

The event will be held at Irish Haven at 5721 4th Avenue at 58th Street this Saturday, October 18, from 7 to 10 pm. Tickets are only available at the door.

Photo by Sunset Park Landmarks Committee


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Thursday, October 9, 2014

New Hotel Coming to 4th Avenue?

Rumor from the locals has it that the properties on the corner of 52nd street and 4th Avenue have been acquired by a Chinese developer and are slated to be torn down to build a hotel. Sunset Park already has the highest concentration of hotels in the borough. The PASUBA (Parkslope, Sunset Park, Bay Ridge) corridor along 4th Avenue has easy access to the R and N lines and easy access to Manhattan so it makes sense as the subway station is right there. With mainland Chinese money being invested in the area hotels make economic sens as well since there is no need to rezone the properties to get one built. All the hotels in the neighborhood charge a fraction of what a hotel room in Manhattan costs and with easy access to the city are more profitable than residential rentals. Time will tell if the rumor turns out to be true, but based on past experience they are usually right. The stores on this corner have been emptying for the last couple of months and it appears the new owners are not interested in renting them out. A clue that the buildings are on the way to be demolished since there are no for rent signs up. 

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Monday, October 6, 2014

Another New Hotel Coming to 39th street.

After a one month hiatus taking care of some personal stuff we are back blogging. In what used to be the old Kings Construction Materials location on 39th street between 8th and 9th Avenue, I can say after speaking to the new owner that a hotel is slated to come to that location. It seems that the KINGS HOTEL located right across the street is about to get some competition.  Now whether this is some disinformation by the new owner remains to be seen. The current location is undergoing demolition to make way for new construction. We will have to see how long the process will take. The location is ideal only a half block away from the 9th Avenue D station and only a half hour to midtown Manhattan. Does Sunset Park need a new hotel? Considering that all the other hotels in the neighborhood are doing brisk business and turning a profit, it appears there is room for one more.

Update 8-10-2014: For further reading Sunset Park gets new 88 room hotel.
Sunset Park to get an 88-room hotel
Sunset Park to get an 88-room hotel


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