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Marine Park’s stable situation • Brooklyn Paper

Marine Park’s stable situation

Sean King teaches Lionel Rothe at his In Performance Music Workshop on Quentin Road in slowly changing Marine Park.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

Marine Park is movin’ on up — yet few residents have taken notice.

Just-released Census numbers show that the median household income in the leafy, traditionally blue-collar neighborhood has skyrocketed over the last decade, jumping upwards of 45 percent on some blocks.

Today, a typical Marine Park family earns anywhere from $83,000 to $119,000, according to Census trackers — surprising, but welcome news to Marine Park Hardware owner Greg Borruso.

“I’m pleased to see it; I thought it would be the reverse because of what is going on with the economy,” Borruso, who is also president of the Marine Park Civic Association, said from behind the counter of his Avenue S store, a neighborhood fixture since the 1920s. “To me it’s still pretty much the middle-class neighborhood it’s always been.”

Housing prices have also risen in Marine Park over the past decade, from 91 to 115 percent, with a range of $440,000 to well over $600,000 — pricey, but still a bargain when compared to home prices in Park Slope or other Brownstone Brooklyn locales.

Still, no one seems to be cashing in on Marine Park’s newfound prosperity: Very few new businesses have opened up on Avenue U, Avenue S or Quentin Road, the area’s three main commercial strips. In fact, neighborhood staples like the Kings Plaza Diner on Avenue U and the McGuinness Irish Gift Shop on Avenue S have actually closed over the last two years.

Avenue S has managed to hold true to its middle class roots with its assortment of pizza shops, Chinese takeout and delis that offer reduced-price lunch specials for kids. There’s also the Mariner’s Inn — a local watering hole that caters to neighborhood firefighters and their families.

The neighborhood’s only new addition is the sports bar and restaurant 30 & 7, which opened on Quentin Road last year. It has a bit of a Park Slope vibe, but still appeals to the neighborhood’s blue-collar crowd, residents say.

Sean King, owner of the In Performance Music Workshop on Quentin Road, hopes Marine Park doesn’t turn into the next Park Slope anytime soon. He knows what newfound affluence can do a neighborhood — he had to move his music school a few doors down on Quentin Road after his rent went up.

“Everything goes up every so often, but sometimes when a community really prospers, people decide to get greedy,” he said.

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