12/25/13 12:00am
Photo courtesy of Heartfish Press, a boutique letterpress studio in Dumbo.

Photo courtesy of Heartfish Press, a boutique letterpress studio in Dumbo.

Happy holidays from DumboNYC! We wanted to take the time to wish you a happy and healthy holiday season. Thank you for all of your support this year.

Since 2001 Marty Markowitz has been Brooklyn Borough President. His always-on and positive persona has been the biggest advocate of Brooklyn, and propelled Brooklyn as a global brand. In one week, Mr. Markowitz will be leaving the Brooklyn Borough President office. But he has left Brooklyn with a legacy and a Christmas message, a Brooklyn-themed version of “Twas the Night Before Christmas.”

“As I enter the homestretch of my final term in elected office, my wife Jamie and I, along with the entire staff at Brooklyn Borough Hall, extend to you and your family our fondest wishes for an enjoyable holiday season, with our prayers that 2014 will bring us world peace, good health, love and an end to senseless gun violence in our country,” said Borough President Markowitz. “Thank you for allowing me to be part of your life these last 35 years, both as a former State Senator and as Brooklyn Borough President.”

Brooklyn’s “Twas the Night Before Christmas”

Twas the night before Christmas, in the County of Kings,
Where Brooklynites sing praise for so many things.
All 2.6 million, so hip and so chic,
Is there another city that’s quite as unique?

With Williamsburg hipsters all decked to the nines,
In skinny jeans and flannel, all colors and kinds?
And what of the “stroller derby” of Park Slope,
They jam to Jay-Z and Beyonce; how dope!

Where winter’s a glorious time of the year,
In Coney Island, the polar bears cheer!
And skaters can skate to their hearts’ delight,
In Prospect Park, gliding at the speed of light.

Nets fans at the Barclays, they cheer in the aisles,
And can’t wait for next year to welcome their Isles!
The sounds of the season cheer woman and man,
In East Flatbush, home to the joyful steel pan.

In Brooklyn, the holidays go on without end,
Ensuring there’s plenty of good times to spend.
From Borough Park’s latkes on Hanukkah nights,
To Bed-Stuy and twinkling of Kwanzaa lights!

As families take pictures ‘neath Borough Hall’s tree,
Sipping hot cocoa or peppermint tea.
They gear up for shopping; in Brooklyn, of course!
For all that’s artisanal and of local source.

And so many holiday displays to see,
Whether in Dyker Heights or in Canarsie.
‘Tis the season for kinship, we’re all closely knit,
Feel like a Grinch? Well, ‘fuhgeddaboudit’!

Now Gravesend! Now, DUMBO! Now, Red Hook and Weeksville!
On, Bushwick! On, Marine Park! On, Clinton Hill!
To the top of Greenpoint! To the tip of Sea Gate!
No matter your neighborhood, Brooklyn’s just great!

So spring to the subway, the bike or the ferry,
And head home to family and friends to make merry!
And as you gather, exclaim with a cheer,
“Happy holidays Brooklyn, and a happy new year!”

Thank you Mr. Markowitz for serving Brooklyn! Happy holidays!


12/21/13 9:31pm
(Photo by Daniel Greenfeld via dumbo.is)

(Photo by Daniel Greenfeld via dumbo.is)

DUMBO Firepit will operate in the Pearl Street Triangle (Water Street at Pearl Street) until December 23. Burning hours are 4-8pm on weekdays and 12-5pm on weekends.

The following are selected links from this past week on blogs and websites with discussion about Dumbo (and its neighboring areas):

12/20/13 10:37pm
Image of DMH, with Brooklyn Bridge Park and Brooklyn Heights in the background, courtesy of Alan Kotok and used through attribution license.

Image of DMH, with Brooklyn Bridge Park and Brooklyn Heights in the background, courtesy of Alan Kotok and used through attribution license.

A message from our Brooklyn Community Board 2:

Residents of Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO are to be advised that a commercial will be filmed at the Downtown Manhattan Heliport (DMH) between 4:00 and 10:00 pm tomorrow; Saturday, December 21, 2013. Barring unforeseen problems, the production company expects filming to be completed by 8:00 pm.

As part of the shoot, a helicopter will go up-and-down several times. The chopper will rise several times to an altitude of approximately 15 feet, the production company has informed the community board.

12/19/13 5:45pm

DNAinfo reporter Janet Upadhye notes that both Brooklyn Mac and Brooklyn Cupcake are closing their Dumbo pop-up shops in the Pearl Street side (at the 68 Jay Street building) in Dumbo. Brooklyn Cupcake ended its lease this month and Brooklyn Mac will leave in January. According to the DNAinfo article, Brooklyn Cupcake founder Carmen Rodriguez said that “The DUMBO location ended up being a little slow.” The retail spaces are not yet leased.

In the same building, on the Jay Street side, Burrow has opened a “tiny cookie take-out shop” with good coffee and tea. Owner Akako Kurokawa opened her shop on December 7, 2013. She was a former patissier at The Modern at MoMA and Plaza Hotel. The coffee is from Kitten Coffee and the tea from Mariage Freres.

Photo from lozares

Photo from lozares

Judging from Ms. Kurokawa’s Instagram photos, the cookies and pastries look delicious. Have you tried them?

Burrow Patisserie
68 Jay Street, Brooklyn NY 11201 (lobby of the Jay Street entrance)
Hours: weekdays, noonish ~ 5ish, closed on the weekends

{Brooklyn Mac Opens in Dumbo, 28May2013}
{Brooklyn Cupcake Opens in Dumbo, 18Feb2013}

12/16/13 2:12pm


Last week’s NY Post House of the Week featured Women’s Health publisher Laura Frerer-Schmidt’s 6,000 square foot Dumbo loft. The loft at 31 Washington Street was converted in 2008 into two separate lofts — a 2,600 square foot unit for her family and a 3,300 square foot unit purchased by the president of Dumbo-based West Elm.


The owner spent a year and a half renovating and discusses the difficulty of getting the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) without an architect: “According to city records, there was an elevator in the middle of their apartment. A Red Cross facility once stationed in their building during a 1950s storm meant their kitchen and bathroom must be held to hospital standards. Inspectors came more than a dozen times. It was like being in a Sartre novel. Eventually, Frerer-Schmidt took a few weeks off work and literally hung around the DoB to get all her checkmarks.”

The end result is a beautiful open floorplan with 14″ ceilings with exposed wooden beams.

(Photos courtesy of NY Post. Click more below for more photos.)

{On the Market: Washington Street Floor-Through Loft, 25Setp2007}
{Condo of the Day: 31 Washington Street, #6B, 03May2011, Brownstoner}
{31 Washington Street, #6B, Elliman.com}


12/16/13 12:13pm


We received the below December 2013 update from Chris Havens, Director of Commercial Property at aptsandlofts.com. The office vacancy in Dumbo is limited and price per square feet is in the $50+ range.

Once again DUMBO is a market leader, with Two Trees achieving over $100 per square foot at One Old Fulton Street from the incoming Shake Shack and West Elm is reported to paying $42 to $52 per RSF (various sources give both numbers!) for 150,000 RSF at Empire Stores. The Brooklyn record for office space and supportive of the $50 something asks at the ‘new’ Sands & Prospect buildings the Watchtower sold.

Our little waterfront world has changed – I recently put in a $40 offer for office space in a brick and timber building and it was not accepted!

A new restaurant called DISH replaced RICE at 81 Washington. As you know, workers and residents ask constantly for more food options. The food truck consortium that leased the lot at Water and Jay to rotate trucks is very popular but not the sit down dinner space sorely needed here.

Midtown Equities and their partners have put their 40,000 sf of retail and 17,000 of ‘market space’ officially up for grabs. I’ll see the building again Thursday and learn more about pricing, which is around $100 per sf. West Elm has taken 9,200 of that space so far.

We are all waiting for Bridge Street to get some retail. Both 52 Bridge and 220 Water are said to be leased to office users. Until 53-57 Bridge is renovated for office (I hope) or residential use, not much will happen over there.

At long last, the Chambers Papers Company is said to be leaving 135 Plymouth Street, as that owner continues to renovate units upstairs as apartments and litigates to stave off Loft Law coverage of the existing residents.

{Dumbo Commercial Real Estate Update (June 2013), 02Jul2013}
{Dumbo Brooklyn Commercial Report (March 2012), 12Mar2012}
{Dumbo Brooklyn Retail Report (Jan 2012), 13Jan2012}
{Dumbo Retail Report (Dec 2011), 16Dec2011}
{Dumbo Commercial Real Estate Update (Nov 2011), 22Nov2011}