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Bushwick is the new Williamsburg

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Williamsburg is known for its superb cuisine, old-school aesthetic, killer nightlife, and, now, exploding rent prices, tourists and trust-fund babies. So what’s a hipster to do? Pack up the ramen noodles and head to Bushwick.

Census figures released this week show that Bushwick — which in some areas is still 65-percent Hispanic — is becoming a haven for middle- and lower-class whites. That population has grown more than 15 percent in the 10 years, and its income is declining rapidly — median incomes top out in the upper $30,000s. And some areas of Bushwick have median incomes as low as $19,000, an 18-percent decline over the past decade.

It’s the artists, college students and growing families that are gentrifying — or de-gentrifying — Bushwick these days.

“This is a real affordable artist community, a lot like Williamsburg used to be,” said Dani King, a two-year Bushwick resident who was cast out of Williamsburg by rising rents. “Williamsburg is too freaking expensive. Here, there’s space, and artists are everywhere. It’s just got that vibe now.”

Like the young pop-up community before it, Bushwick attracts musicians and vagabonds alike with its phenomenal real-estate prices and location. Indeed, it keeps the young crowd on their beloved L train from Grand Street to Myrtle and Wyckoff avenues, and it’s a buyer’s market in terms of real estate — rent is on the rise just like everywhere else, but the median monthly price for a home is as low as $550 in some areas.

Try getting that in Williamsburg, where rents have shot up as much as 30 percent. Heck, brokers are even calling parts of the warehouse-heavy neighborhood, “East Williamsburg” on their advertisements.

Billyburg is so 2002.

“We came out to Bushwick because this is the last spot to get a lot of space for such a good price — plus, a lot of the artists were already out here,” said Jessica Tom, director of marketing and events for the 3rd Ward art space in Bushwick. “The neighborhood has this raw, fresh energy. We recognize that Bushwick might be far out of the way now, but we wouldn’t be able to grow if we were in Williamsbu­rg.”

Updated 5:22 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

voter from park slope says:
Amazing, not one quote from any long term Bushwick residents that have faced the other side of this. Bushwick is literally under attack by speculative slumlords looking to evict low rent paying tenants for any or no reason. Why not address or at least mention this? Changes that might be fun and hip for these kids, play out a little differently for seniors and people who don't pay higher rents.
Dec. 22, 2010, 7:55 am
peter from red hook says:
make your font bigger
Dec. 22, 2010, 5:07 pm
gimme from around says:
whoohaha bushwick, yo bein whiteatized right now!
Dec. 22, 2010, 8:19 pm
Census Watcher from NYS says:
RE: Median income declines

Could it be that poorer long-term minority residents are losing ground in the face of a recession and lack of decent jobs?

I know that doesn't fit in with the triumphant starving artist narrative the writer is trying to sell to the reader, but it may be as likely as anything.
Dec. 22, 2010, 11:22 pm
james from bushwick says:
these articles make me sick. ive been living in bushwick for over 20 years and it is truly saddening the kinds of stories written about my neighborhood. all of a sudden white people move in and bushwick is interesting? give me a break. this town is home to so many interesting, innovative, and ingenious individuals black, latino, asian, and other non-white.

I am not a racist, but these types of articles make me despise white people, artists, and the media!
Dec. 23, 2010, 10:40 am
Stan from Flatbush says:
Chasing away low-income families to east new york? NY is getting so expensive and thanks to white people being white the property value rises. Bring back my violent 90s NYC.
Dec. 23, 2010, 10:52 am
Tim from Boerum Hill says:
Really? This is news?? I think I read this article 5 years ago. I lived out in Bushwick in 2005-2008. Does this story have any value? This same story has been published 1,000 times over. You don't need a census to figure out what's going on in Bushwick. And it's still totally under served in terms of amenities.
Dec. 23, 2010, 12:24 pm
John from Bushwick says:
Hey brothers, it doesn’t matter black or white, it’s those that work hard and create something different that allows you to change. We brothers may be expecting too much..turn off those TVs, put a book in your hand and get off your fat asses and start making a change, it’s all about education, pride, hard work & accepting those whiteys that you keep blaming
Dec. 23, 2010, 12:33 pm
Adam from Prospect Heights says:
All I know is I didn't move to East Bushwick because there was nothing there. Not even laundromats.

And West Bushwick was already too expensive.
Dec. 26, 2010, 9:03 am
toonmonk from east williamsburg says:
You have your facts all wrong.

Did you even google before you wrote this article?

East Williamsburg & Bushwick two were originally the town of Criplebush but were spilt in 1835.

Know your subject before you start projecting your real estate fantasies on our neighborhood.
Dec. 31, 2010, 12:46 am
Ethan from East Williamsburg says:
"Heck, brokers are even calling parts of the warehouse-heavy neighborhood, “East Williamsburg” on their advertisements."

Actually, it IS East Williamsburg, not Bushwick. That is, if you are standing north of Flushing Avenue, you are in Williamsburg or Greenpoint. In 1840 the "City of Williamsburg" formally separated from the "Township of Bushwick." The border was drawn north-south along Bushwick Avenue. Later, the rest of Bushwick north of Flushing was scooped up by the growing City of Williamsburg. Everything north of Flushing Avenue is either Williamsburg or Greenpoint. The neighborhood of Bushwick lies south of Flushing. Been that way for a while. The "East Williamsburg Industrial Valley" has been in place since about 1981. Finally, the argument for Flushing Avenue as the border between Williamsburg and Bushwick is supported by the fact that everything north of Flushing Avenue lies within Community Board 1, which represents Williamsburg and Greenpoint.

That said, there's nothing wrong with the colloquialism "Bushwick" being used to describe various parts of Brooklyn. The whole of North Brooklyn was once the Dutch colony of "Boswyk" and there have been "Bushwick sightings" in Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and even parts of Queens.
Jan. 15, 2011, 5:59 pm
jor from br says:
——s suck
May 23, 2011, 5:24 pm
Stephanie from Brooklyn says:
I think no matter what, Brooklyn is considered as the haven away from the costly apartments in Manhattan. Even though there are some parts of Brooklyn becoming expensive, there is still other parts that aren't and so people move to the inexpensive places. The cycle goes on and on.
Nov. 7, 2012, 7:03 pm
emma from brooklyn says:
Everything was alot better before these hipsters came
And started taking interest when they never did before. Back then white people didnt even think twice of walking in the "hood" now because rent is to expensive for them they want to kick families out of their own homes when they didnt have much to begin with? Please go back where you came from!
Nov. 8, 2013, 12:46 pm

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