Where Is the Next Brooklyn?

There once was a time when people in New York City lived in Brooklyn because it was significantly cheaper than Manhattan. Now people move to Brooklyn because of its Urban Outfitters concept store. Where will all the Brooklynites go now?

Brooklyn used to be "cool." Now Brooklyn is expensive and horrible. Here, based on the latest figures out today, is a fun bar trivia game to play: ask someone, "Do you know what the median rent in Brooklyn is?" Then, as they're thinking about it, ostentatiously empty a container of cyanide into your beer.

The median monthly rent was $2,900, up 13 percent from a year earlier and the highest since appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and brokerage Douglas Elliman Real Estate began tracking the market in January 2008... Last month's median rent was $300 cheaper than Manhattan's, compared with an average spread of about $1,100 in 2008, according to Miller Samuel and Douglas Elliman. Rental demand is also surging as the number of homes for sale in the borough tumbled to a six-year low.

Nothing screams "a welcoming place of refuge for young people and their artistic youthful energy" like a $2,900 a month median rent. Thank you for playing your part in getting the gentrification ball rolling, artistic young people. Your services are no longer needed. You will now be replaced by the unironically wealthy. (Needless to say, the services of the original residents of these neighborhoods has not been needed for some time now.)

The only question now is, where do all the "regular" people move? (Anyone suggesting "out of New York City" will be banned for trolling.) Sure, it's easy to say "Queens" or "The Bronx," or to suggest that everyone just move deeper into Brooklyn. But if you think that the gentrification wave will not soon wash over Sunnyside and Corona and start lapping at the shores of even East New York, you are far too optimistic. My theory is that we are primed for the pendulum to swing back to Manhattan—we are approximately 2 years away from a rash of trend stories declaring that "Manhattan Is the New Brooklyn," as people begin to realize that it's actually cheaper now to live in the East Village or Washington Heights or the Upper East Side than it is to live in fucking Williamsburg or Fort Greene or even fucking Bed-Stuy or Crown Heights, at this point, fuck everything.

You'll always have your "Brooklyn" t-shirt.

[Image of the near future: Flickr]