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Bob Marvin

Since I'm a BWAC member I spend a fair amount of time in Red Hook and like the area a lot. Still, it really is a special case because of the lack of transport and I don't think it's possible to draw any inferences applicable to Brooklyn or NYC as a whole.


I think you hit the nail right on the head. We looked in Redhook before we bought in PLG. Although there are a number of good things about it, the isolation factor has no easy fix. Some day that might change - especially if the idea of reviving light rail around NYC takes hold. But until then, Redhook will be edgy.


I remember hearing some talk about a year or so ago about Red Hook getting a makeover a la Hoboken with a waterfront park, ferry service and cruise ship terminal. That's too bad - it sounds like it must've fallen through or had just been a rumor.

We just bought a place on the border of PLG...not quite PLG but very close. We're looking forward to getting to know the neighborhood.

Dan Icolari

Greetings from St. George, Staten Island

I was interested in the piece on Red Hook because my wife and I remember it when it was seriously a no-man's land--and because we have friends who exhibit at BWAC, so we're there a lot.

We got to know Red Hook in 1967, when our friends Donna and Steve and their two kids rented a floor-thru near Columbia Street with space heaters for $35 a month. I don't have to recount how much we could have bought for how little, but we didn't, and for precisely the reasons enumerated here.

The perception of remoteness--not the reality, as in Red Hook, but the perception--is exactly what has kept my neighborhood, St. George--which has amazing topography, stunning harbor views and a large census of pre-World War I buildings at prices 1/4 to 1/3 less than their equivalents in Brooklyn--from being restored and commercially developed as quickly as its real circumstances would seem to warrant.

In some ways, the slower pace of restoration/development here is a positive. Though I think prices are absurd (we bought when it was cheap; you know the rest), they're a whole lot less absurd than those on either side of Prospect Park. And that allows people with more taste than money to find a perch here.

Example: Our son and his wife, recently married, moved from Fort Greene to an 1100 square foot, 2 bedroom St. George co-op diagonally across Richmond Terrace from the ferry terminal. Price $225K; 5% cash down.

So the perception of remoteness can actually work in one's favor. It certainly worked for us many years ago; and more recently, in a different market, it's worked for our son and his wife.

Bob Marvin

The Red Hook waterfront park, ferry service and cruise ship terminal mentioned by Sharon are not a rumor and have not fallen through. They've all been built.

That still doesn't solve Red Hook's transit problem though. FWIW I still like Red Hook a lot.

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