“South Brooklyn” To “South Slope”

Andrew Sullivan —  Jul 25 2011 @ 8:38am

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Anthony Paletta reviews Suleiman Osman's The Invention of Brownstone Brooklyn: Gentrification and the Search for Authenticity in Postwar New York:

One of the best studies of gentrification yet written, Osman’s book picks up where the Robert-Moses-versus-Jane-Jacobs story leaves off, looking past the no-longer-imperiled neighborhood of Greenwich Village to Brooklyn, where transplants began to forge new neighborhoods.

An important moment arrived in 1964, when the controversial Cadman Plaza West tower development, which had faced political pressure for years, finally went forward after the city government took steps to protect Brooklyn Heights’ adjoining blocks. These became New York’s first designated historic district the following year. Residents with an appetite for renovation (and renaming) began to fill Brooklyn Heights. They spread south of the formidable Atlantic Avenue, which Truman Capote once described as a street where “seedy hangouts, beer-sour bars, and bitter candy stores mingle among the eroding houses.” There they began overhauling real estate and coining new names—Cobble Hill, Boerum Hill, Carroll Gardens—fashioned largely out of historical wishfulness.

One of those "seedy hangouts", the famous Prohibition bar Freddy's, recently located to one of brownstone Brooklyn's newest neighborhoods, South Slope, after it was forced out by the Atlantic Yards, a high-rise development project with a sports arena.

(Map via The Brooklyn Politics, in a post on the recent efforts of Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries to punish real estate agents for inventing neighborhood names like ProCro and BoCoCa.)