In Brooklyn, America's Coolest Land Area, the "name of the game" is staying one step ahead of the tidal wave of gentrification that wants to swallow you and price you out of your own neighborhood. Bad news: it's time to find the "next" Brooklyn neighborhood.
It is hilarious when, in the year 2014, various news outlets refer to the neighborhood of Williamsburg as "trendy." Today, it is much more "trendy" for normal humans to be moving as far away from Williamsburg as possible, in order to try to find somewhere they can afford. A rough chronology of Brooklyn neighborhoods that have been "trendy" (meaning they were cheap and young people started moving there because they were cheap and then they grew ever more affluent and unaffordable) over the past 20 years might go something like Williamsburg- Prospect Heights- Greenpoint- Bushwick- (parts of) Bed-Stuy- Crown Heights. Yes, the great Brooklyn Wheel of Popularity has landed upon Crown Heights, and the power of its effect can be staggering. Staggering I say! Bloomberg reports today that rents are going up faster in Crown Heights than anywhere else in Brooklyn, and the median home price "soared 58 percent... in the first seven months of the year."
Up 58% just this year! If prices keep rising at this rate, the average home in Crown Heights will cost $19 million before the decade is out.
The point is, if you, like thousands of other young New York City dreamers, moved to Crown Heights recently, it's time to pack your shit: Crown Heights is over. (If you are a longtime resident of Crown Heights who was priced out by the wave of young New York City dreamers currently themselves being priced out, this is old news to you.) It looks like it's already time to find a new Next Brooklyn Neighborhood For All the People to Move To. At this point, every single neighborhood close to Manhattan has now been colonized. Where is the new place for fresh-faced young arrivals to go?
The farther parts of Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights, which have not yet been gentrified?
The answer is, "If your neighborhood is even prominent enough to appear on this list, it is already time for you to start thinking about moving somewhere cheaper."
In the meantime, do not move to Crown Heights. Taylor Berman lives there. Not a place you want to raise your kids.
[Photo of an area you cannot afford: Flickr]