Brooklyn Heights Couple Flees to Fort Greene

The New York Times profiles Fort Greene and a Brooklyn Heights couple who recently moved there. With its mix of great restaurants and a diverse population, should Brooklyn Heights aspire to be a little more like Fort Greene?

New York Times: Living in Fort Greene: “It’s a small neighborhood, but it’s like a little jewel,” said Ryan Donovan, a 29-year-old dancer who moved to South Oxford Street with his partner, Erik Gensler, 31, last May.

The couple moved from Brooklyn Heights after a long hunt for the right apartment, which they spotted on an open-house listing. There were no photos, but the place was just the right price on just the right street.

They bought the two-bedroom co-op for $355,000, and after closing removed one bedroom, to open up their living space. Now, on weekends, they visit friends who make ricotta cheese and jewelry at the Brooklyn Flea market, and they idle on the hill in Fort Greene Park, reading the newspaper.

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  • Publius

    Nah, there has to be someplace to be boring and old fartish. I like the Heights just the way it is. Could use some better restaurants though. Even boring old farts like to eat well.

  • bornhere

    I read the piece in the Times, and I got the impression that the couple simply “moved”; I’m not sure there was a lot of fleeing involved. Fort Greene is becoming more and more vibrant, while still holding on to some of the best architecture around. It has more options/space than the Heights; but, when you really think about it, BH has essentially two streets (Montague and parts of Henry) that can really accommodate interesting restaurants, shops, etc. And because of high rents, unique options are woefully limited.

  • Monty

    My wife and I actually fled here from Ft Greene. FG does have some wonderful character and terrific restaurants, but we decided that having nice restaurants is overrated. They also had no usable drug store or supermarket aside from Target and Pathmark which are in the unquaint part of town. It was also becoming increasingly overrun with hipsters and wasn’t really that safe (several friends were mugged, police raids at Cuyler Gore Park were common). Definitely some things I miss and still go back for, but BH is for us now :)

  • my2cents

    I was just at the Brooklyn Flea in Dumbo, and found it as good as, or better than the one in Fort Greene, btw.

  • meg

    The Heights doesn’t need to be like Fort Greene. It’s nice to have someplace like that so close to visit, but it’s also nice to have the Heights to return to. With more excitement also comes more noise, less safety.

  • Karl Junkersfeld

    Love both areas. Fort Greene much hipper and BH more staid. I’m for the more staid at this time in my life.

  • DAB

    Heights should have more two-bedrooms for $355K.

    Local restaurants are pretty good, imo. Would be better to get some shops in the vacant places, tho.

  • RatNYC

    I love the Heights and been living here for a long time. But after divorcing and not having kids I find it more difficult each day to be a single guy in this neighborhood. I hung out at fort green this last weekend and although the hipster situation is real, I found it to be more vibrant, younger and definitely ‘singler’. Then I came back to the Heights and was almost ran over by people pushing strollers on Montague St.

  • nabeguy

    I love these reverse gentrification stories. Stay in the Heights…it’s geriatricized and strollerized all at the same time.

  • Lelani

    Just bought a FABULOUS Ian Schrager three bedroom duplex on Governer’s Island (for less than my cramped Fort Greene apartment on Myrtle avenue) facing the water front surrounded by white birch and just walking distance from the island’s organic food co-op and the new island’s new Frank Gehry musuem!!! The ferry is only a dollar and drops you off on Wall Street.

  • GIguy

    We left Fort Greene and got in on the new real estate market on Governer’s Island too. Our apt faces the Statue of Liberty. We just went to the Bicycle Bar and it was hipper than anything Fort Greene had to offer!

  • Publius

    I call B.S. on that. Cute though.