Williamsburg street scenes
Some photos from around Williamsburg and the East River
(Photos Dec 2008, words March 2010, ©urban75)
Rarely have I seen a place gentrify so rapidly as Williamsburg.
A neighbourhood in the New York City borough of Brooklyn, and bordered by Greenpoint, Bedford-Stuyvesant, and Bushwick, its residents include Germans, Hasidic Jews, Italians, Puerto Ricans, and Dominicans and - in more recent years - hipsters galore.
Along with its long-established immigrant families, Williamsburg proved a magnet for artists and bo-ho types who took up residence in some of the old factories and warehouses near the riverfront.
Things started to change after New York City Council passed a large-scale rezoning of the North Side and Greenpoint waterfront in 2005, despite widespread local opposition.
The rezoning accelerated gentrification, with Tribeca-style lofts springing up and 'luxury condos' breeding like rabbits.
Upmarket residents, investors and celebrities swiftly followed in the wake of these chi-chi new properties, with inflated rents turfing out old businesses like our favourite cafe - the Read Cafe - and the excellent Clover bookstore.
Williamsburg's art community is largely associated with one of its main thoroughfares, Bedford Avenue.
Old warehouse awaiting gentrification.
Old disused cafe.
Luxury condons on the horizon,.
More uxury condos.
And yet more....
Old store front.
One of Williamsburg's iconic water towers.
Down to the East River.
Looking across the East River to Manhattan.
Huge riverfront developement.
Old railroad tracks - a remanant from Williamsburg's industrial past.
Another large housing development, towards Greenpoint.
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