Flatbush

Architectural eye candy in Flatbush Caton Market’s neighborhood

Eye On Real Estate

November 18, 2015 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Newly renovated Kings Theatre is one of Flatbush's architectural jewels. Eagle photos by Lore Croghan

An old-time movie palace that has come back to life. A high school that looks like a castle. A church built in the 1790s.

The streets near Flatbush Caton Market are filled with architectural eye candy — and shoppers frequenting busy stores and restaurants.

With the market slated for a makeover — see related story — we want to show readers the vibrant neighborhood that surrounds it.

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These buildings are in Flatbush for the most part; some are in Prospect Lefferts Gardens.

* KINGS THEATRE at 1027 Flatbush Ave. originally opened in 1929 as the Loew’s Kings — a palace for movie-goers that was referred to as a “Wonder Theatre” because of its ornate style.

As we’ve reported previously, the French Renaissance-style Flatbush theater closed when Jimmy Carter was president and sat empty and decaying for decades.

ACE Theatrical Group gave it a $93.9 million historic restoration and reopened it as a performing arts venue in January 2015.

* ASTORIA BANK at 1045 Flatbush Ave. is quite the eye-catcher. The stately stone building is located on the same block as Kings Theatre.


* A three-story commercial building at 1038 FLATBUSH AVE. is being rebuilt and enlarged. It’s mostly steel beams and a bit of brick wall at this point. But it will make a great addition to the avenue when the work is finished.

Its developer, Maddd Properties LLC, whose managing member is Jorge Madruga, bought the property for $3,056,640 in 2012, city Finance Department records indicate.

* We’re charmed by the Happy Feet atop 959 Flatbush Ave. — meaning the giant red shoes that serve as advertising for BALMIR LATIN DANCE STUDIO.

* ERASMUS HALL HIGH SCHOOL at 911 Flatbush Ave. looks like a castle. Its long list of famous alums includes singers Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond, opera star Beverly Sills, Arista Records founder Clive Davis, actors Susan Hayward and Eli Wallach, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Bernard Malamud and hard-boiled mystery writer Mickey Spillane. It’s now called the Erasmus Hall Educational Campus.

* THE REFORMED PROTESTANT DUTCH CHURCH OF FLATBUSH at 890 Flatbush Ave., built in 1793-1798, is one of the first buildings to be designated a city landmark. Architectural history expert Suzanne Spellen, writing under the pen name Montrose Morris in a Brownstoner.com story, calls the Federal-style church “one of the architectural treasures of New York City.”

Members of numerous notable families from Brooklyn’s early days are buried in its historic graveyard.

* The church’s former PARSONAGE at 2103 Kenmore Terrace looks like a rich gentleman’s pre-Civil War-era country home. The gracious Greek Revival-style house has Italianate trim and a fine porch with columns.

* Scattered among the side-street apartment buildings, there are charming rowhouses, for instance 357 to 375 PARKSIDE AVE.


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