01/28/15 3:27pm
Dumbo Arts Festival 2012

Dumbo Arts Festival 2012

The organizers for the DUMBO Arts Festival announced yesterday that they have decided to not return (see below for the full announcement or go to dumboartsfestival.com/thank-you-for-18-years). After 18 years, the festival showcased the creative people in the area and grew to attract more than 200,000 visitors to Dumbo, but they felt that the DUMBO Arts Festival outgrew the original mission.

We asked Lisa Kim, the Festival Director what the DUMBO Arts Festival meant for Two Trees, the founding sponsor of the festival which took over the lead sponsorship and organization of the festival in 2009. She told us, “The DUMBO Arts Festival was a celebration of the neighborhood and was an incredible showcase of the creative spirit and innovation that has characterized this area from its industrial past to today. We are grateful to everyone who has been a part of the event over the years. Our focus and dedication to support the art community has only strengthened over the years and I want to assure everyone that with this decision Two Trees support for the arts in DUMBO and beyond will only increase.

We are finding ways to respond to the needs of the art community through our rent subsidy and studio programs and we are committed to presenting quality long term projects and programming for DUMBO throughout the year.”

We liked visiting artist and exhibits at the DUMBO Arts Festival each year, and it’s sad to see it go, but can understand the tough balance of showcasing artists as a grass roots initiative and commercializing the event.

We asked Ms. Kim about the now vacant Galapagos Art Space building at 16 Main Street, who told us that “The Galapagos Art Space building will remain an arts building – it is being converted into street level gallery spaces for the DUMBO galleries. The First Thursday Gallery walk will have a new and expanded route later this spring.”

Here’s the full statement from Lisa Kim, Festival Director and Frank Riley, Executive Producer:

Friends,

After an amazing 18-year run, the annual DUMBO Arts Festival will not be returning this year. It is with heavy hearts that we bring you this news, which was not an easy decision to make.

Founded in 1997 as the Art Under the Bridge Festival by DUMBO residents Joy Glidden and Tyson Daugherty, the festival was initially established as a grass roots artists’ initiative designed to attract people to experience art in DUMBO in order to preserve the neighborhood as a springboard for new art and ideas. Glidden went on to found the DUMBO Arts Center, which was steward to the festival from 1998-2009. With DAC’s announcement to end the festival in 2009, founding sponsor Two Trees Management Company stepped in and took over lead sponsorship and organization of the festival.

Over the past five years, with an incredible team of supporters, artists, dedicated staff, and volunteers from around the world, we worked to showcase extraordinary art from a growing list of local and international artists. We’ve had an incredible run and brought beautiful moments of art to a huge audience. At the very least, we hope we have pushed artists and the public to think more broadly about art and to find it in the most unexpected of places. It has been an honor and a thrill to oversee such a massive celebration of art.

But as the festival grew and grew–more than 220,000 visitors flooded the neighborhood for the festival weekend last year–it became clear that we could no longer mount the festival ourselves without commercializing it in a way that didn’t feel right. We were getting too far from the original mission of the festival. As a result, in consultation with the organizing team, we have elected to end the festival and refocus on how best to allocate resources to support an active, year-round DUMBO arts community.

Thank you all for your support and participation over the years, and we hope to see you soon–not just for one weekend of the year. Stay tuned for news of future events and projects and be sure to visit the artists, galleries and cultural groups that keep DUMBO an arts destination year round.

Sincerely,

Lisa Kim, Festival Director
Frank Riley, Executive Producer

Photo courtesy of www.dumboartsfestival.com/, and by Jane Kratochvil

Photo courtesy of www.dumboartsfestival.com, and by Jane Kratochvil


{Prior ‘Dumbo Arts Festival’ posts}

01/26/15 3:07pm
Pinkberry Dumbo location closed?

Pinkberry Dumbo location closed?

(While NYC is bracing for a winter blizzard, ice cream is the last thing on everyone’s minds.)

The Dumbo Brooklyn location of Pinkberry (117 Front Street) may be closed for good. We initially thought they closed for the season, but an anonymous source told us that they will close the location. The windows are papered, the awning was removed last week, and the Dumbo listing on the Pinkberry website no longer lists Dumbo as a location. We are waiting to hear back from Pinkberry for the official word.

Related:
{Pinkberry to Open on Thursday (March 28, 2013), 27Mar2013}
{Pinkberry Opening In DUMBO Thursday, 26Mar2013, Gothamist}
{Pinkberry Dumbo To Open “Early 2013″, 31Jan2013}
{Pinkberry Frozen Yogurt Coming To Dumbo, 27Aug2012}
{Pinkberry Leases 117 Front Street, 22Aug2012}

117 Front Street, Brooklyn NY 11201

01/13/15 1:25pm
Peas&Pickles Grocery

Peas&Pickles Grocery

Peas & Pickles, the 24 hour deli/grocery store in Dumbo Brooklyn closed for interior renovations starting yesterday. A note on their door says that the expected completion date will be sometime in February 2015.

We are thrilled to announce that our highly anticipated interior renovation has begun, with the expected completion date of February, 2015.

While our store remains a preferred choice of many customers, these extensive renovations will allow us to provide the very best shopping experience to our valued customers.

In the meantime, you can go to the other Dumbo groceries Bridge Fresh Market (7am-11pm) at 68 Jay Street and Foragers Grocer (M-F 8a-9p, Sa-Su 9a-9p). Delis in the neighborhood include 7 Stars Deli (M-Sat 5:30a-5:30p, closed Sun) at 59 Front Street or Jimi’s Fine Food at 50 Jay Street.

Foragers Grocer

Foragers Grocer

01/09/15 4:32pm

Front of the building (courtesy 185york.com)

Front of the building (courtesy 185york.com)


Rear of the building (courtesy 185york.com)

Rear of the building (courtesy 185york.com)

A buyer of a condo unit at 185 York Street reports that the owners have been waiting since mid-2012 to move into the building. The building is being marketed as “City View Condominiums.” The Certificate of Occupancy has not been issued yet, according to the NYC Department of Buildings, which prohibits anyone from occupying the building.

A Brownstoner post from February 2013, almost two years ago, says that at that time, “a broker here tells us that they are going through the last of the inspections and anticipate closings to begin in February or March”. Obviously there are still delays. The buyer suggests to us that the “building sponsor seems to be deliberately holding up the closing of the building. Our only conclusion is that the sponsor under-priced the units, hopes that we will all lose patience and cancel our contracts.” When the 16 unit building went on the market in April 2012, the units ranged from $375,000 for a 631-square-foot one-bedroom to $845,000 for a 1,193-square-foot two-bedroom, two-bath duplex.

According to StreetEasy, 15 of the units were listed for sale until December 29, 2014. Does anyone have updated status for the buyers of this building?

Here’s the note we received from a prospective buyer:

Just wanted to let you and your newspaper know that I am one of the prospective purchasers of a unit at 185 York Street in Vinegar Hill.

Along with all the other eager prospective purchasers, we signed a contract for our unit in the building, which was essentially completed, in mid-2012. Since then, in the intervening 2 1/2 years, we have been starved of information about what is going on and what information we have been given has been incorrect or misleading. The contract holders have nee renting temporary accommodation in various parts of the city to ‘bridge’ the time awaiting the issue of a Certificate of Occupancy.

The building sponsor seems to be deliberately holding up the closing of the building and we are unsure why this would be but it is causing distress to the prospective occupants. Our only conclusion is that the sponsor under-priced the units, hopes that we will all lose patience and cancel our contracts, so the units can be re-listed. This is of course only a supposition and we have no evidence that this is the case but we can come to no better conclusion at this point.

We have contacted the Attorney General’s Office, the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President, the Local NYC Councilor, The DoB Brooklyn Borough Commissioner.

We are looking for any means to get our plight out into the public domain to try to speed up the long-delayed closing.

I think this puts a slightly different light on the ‘rosy’ picture of Vinegar Hill painted in the NY Times article.

Related:
{185 York Street Buyers Still Waiting to Move In, 13Feb2013}
{StreetEasy listing}
{185york.com}

01/08/15 4:40pm

MNS, the Brooklyn real estate firm published their December 2014 Brooklyn Rental Market Report today (along with their Manhattan Rental Market Report). Andrew Barrocas, CEO of MNS, notes that rent prices in Brooklyn decreased slightly to $2,666.88 in December 2014, from $2,677.19 (0.39%) in November 2014, however since December 2013, a 3.08% increase was observed with prices increasing from $2,587.23. Listing inventory increased substantially by 9% from 2,879 unit listings in November 2014 to 3,148 in December 2014.

The largest percentage increase in rent prices (among material sample sizes) was seen in Studio units in Downtown Brooklyn at 10.57%. The largest percentage decreases were seen in Studio units in Bay Ridge and Greenpoint, at 11.94% and 12.88%, respectively.

brooklyn_market_dec_14

Some other highlights of the report include the following:

  • Rent Prices in Brooklyn decreased slightly from 2,677.19 in November to $2,666.88 in December, a 0.39% drop
    • Since December 2013 rent prices have increased 3.08% rising from $2,587.23 to $2,666.88 in December 2014
  • Listing inventory increased substantially by 9%, from 2,879 unit listings in November 2014 to 3,148 in December 2014
  • The largest percentage increases in rent prices since November 2014
    • Studio units in Downtown Brooklyn rose 10.57% from $2,361 in November to $2,611 in December
  • The largest percentage decreases in rent prices since November 2014
    • Studio units in Bay Ridge decreased by 11.94% from $1,458 in November to $1,284 in December
    • Studio units in Greenpoint decreased by 12.88% from $3,012 in November to $2,624 in December
  • The largest annual upward shift in rent prices
    • Average rent increased 15.7% in Boerum Hill from $2,667.65 in December 2013 to $3,088 in December 2014
  • The largest annual downward shifts in rent prices
    • Average rent decreased by 7.4% in Williamsburg from $3,461.62 in December 2013 to $3,204.51 in December 2014
  • Dumbo two-bedroom units have increased by 12.32% since December 2013, rising from $5,153 to $5,788

In Dumbo, although the overall monthly average increased slightly by 0.49%, overall annual average rental prices increased by 5.7%, largely driven by a 12.32% growth in 2 bedroom apartment prices. In Dumbo for December 2014, studios were $2,880 (vs $2,955 in November 2014), one bedrooms $4,043 (vs $3,943 in November 2014), and two bedrooms $5,788 (vs $5,751 in November 2014). Here are the Dumbo price trends over 13 months for studios, one bedrooms, and two bedrooms:
dumbo_brooklyn_market_dec_14

For full report, go to www.mns.com/brooklyn_rental_market_report

Previously:
{October 2014 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{July 2014 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{May 2014 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{March 2014 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{January 2014 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{November 2013 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{October 2013 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{July 2013 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{May 2013 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{Brooklyn Rental Market Report (Year End 2012)}
{October 2012 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{September 2012 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{June 2012 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{May 2012 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}
{April 2012 Brooklyn Rental Market Report}