Sections

Seven up or down? Slope’s Main Street is in flux

for The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like The Brooklyn Paper on Facebook.

Seventh Avenue is a commercial strip in flux.

Along Park Slope’s main business spine — running from Flatbush Avenue to 15th Street — there are 27 storefronts empty or in transition.

Commercial strips undergo periodic turnovers, but few Slopers have seen the neighborhood’s prime shopping street in such a state of transition in recent years.

Here are some of the changes taking place recently:

• Cohen’s Optical opened near Seventh Street in what was formerly a gynecologist’s office.

• Big Apple Cleaners has opened between Fourth and Fifth Streets, replacing Knotting Slope, a knitting supply store.

• A new Turkish restaurant called Istanbul has opened in place of the defunct NoNo Kitchen near Seventh Street.

• The Cabinet Shop on the corner of Eighth Street has closed.

• Chickadee Chick, a fast-food-like poultry purveyor, is coming soon near First Street.

• The Laundromat that stood on the corner of Eighth Street for decades is being renovated and will open as a seafood restaurant this fall.

• Ha Na Bi, the Japanese-Peruvian restaurant at First Street, and the Grecian Corner diner, at Fourth Street, are undergoing renovations. Both claim they will reopen.

• Elementi, an Italian restaurant near Garfield Street that replaced the decades-old Snooky’s Pub only last year, has shut. A “For Rent” sign in the window hawks the location as suitable for another restaurant.

Little D Eatery near 15th is gone, and a Mexican restaurant called Fonda, owned by Chef Roberto Santibanez of the Rosa Mexicano restaurants in Manhattan, is moving in.

Seen in total, an empty storefront nowadays is most likely to become a restaurant, though not necessarily a high-end one.

This could be because rents are dropping. Steve Sommers, a real-estate broker in the neighborhood, said that rents over the past few years had been higher than they should have been.

“It was a bubble, but now all the hot air is getting let out,” said Sommers.

Lower rents favor restaurants, which could explain why there are at least 60 restaurants between Flatbush Avenue and 15th Street. And more are coming.

John Burke, another Slope real-estate broker, said restaurants are about the only new business applications he receives.

“I have stacks of applications, pizza parlors, and such,” said Burke.

Burke said food spaces are going for more than nonfood spaces but are down to $4,500 a month from $5,500 a month three years ago.

Some residents aren’t pleased by the changes, of course.

“There are a million eyeglass stores, Asian restaurants, and chicken places,” said Dolores Phelan, a resident of Park Slope for 25 years. “It has lost the charm it used to have.”

Maybe, but Igor Latman, an employee at Video Gallery near Eighth Street, said there is one main conclusion to be drawn about Seventh Avenue: “People like to eat here!” he said.

Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like The Brooklyn Paper on Facebook.

Reader Feedback

Voltan from Ditmas very west says:
If 7th Ave is to avoid the fate of upper Coney Island Avenue, it should stop romanticizing local"mom and pop" stores. Coney Island Avenue is a disaster. Most of the stores there are reverse colonial outposts, charming, but catering to distinct populations. Try purchasing a decent cheese or a beer. Pork is out of the question. And no pastries to speak of. (The fruits and spices are pluses) Mix it up a little. Bring on a couple of citywide or national chains.
Aug. 4, 2009, 11:28 am
PS Sucks from Not Park Slope says:
This is happening simply because Park Slope sucks.
Aug. 4, 2009, 1:37 pm
Frank from P Heights says:
a butcher... need. a. butcher.
Aug. 5, 2009, 5:07 pm

Enter your comment below

By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:

You agree that you, and not BrooklynPaper.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to BrooklynPaper.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Don’t miss out!

Stay in touch with the stories people are talking about in your neighborhood:

Optional: Help us tailor our newsletters to you!