Red Hook's leaky bubble... ?
There is an awful lot going on these days in and around Red Hook. I've been a bit slack to post, and tonight's post won't be very long, but hey... this blogging thing is just a bit on the side, y'know.
Anyway, the most interesting thing in terms of Red Hook-in-the-news is probably the Brooklyn Papers' interview with Doctoroff regarding waterfront development. Doctoroff basically confirmed that the city is most interested in moving the industrial shipping center of Brooklyn south towards Sunset Park. Despite being pretty clear about Sunset Park though, he wasn't all too specific on what the city wanted to see happen with the piers north of the cruise ship terminals. My guess is that if you take a look at the Brooklyn Bridge Park controversies over ever increasing housing, and at the Williamsburg / Greenpoint residential rezoning, you can probably figure out what's on the boards - more housing. I read someplace that you should never buy a place in New York for the view. Those of you that look out from Columbia Street over Governors Island and the East River might want to mull that one over.
But as for current development... I've been doing a bit of a dogwalker's survey of the neighborhood... day after day, walking the same routes, seeing what's going on or not. What I'm seeing says that maybe the Red Hook part of the bubble is leaking just a bit. There are a number of places, up and down Van Brunt, and deeper onto the side streets that have either had for sale or for rent signs for a suspiciously long time. At least one decent sized apartment building on Van Brunt has been renovated and empty for more than a three months now. Word is they were just asking too much. And one Red Hook listing on Craig's List has seen a couple of drops in the asking price. Financial bubbles operate on unrealistic expectations. If real declines in the rental market cause investment buyers to have to readjust their revenue expectations, prices may begin to stall. Hmmm...