Come stroll Fifth Avenue in Bay Ridge
Eye on Real Estate
It starts with an arena and ends with a quasi-cathedral.
We’re talking about Fifth Avenue, the commercial and residential corridor that runs from Barclays Center at the edge of Park Slope to big, beautiful St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church in Bay Ridge.
The five-mile street passes through Greenwood Heights and Sunset Park, too.
A stroll down the full length of Fifth Avenue will give you a feel for the old-fashioned architecture in these four neighborhoods.
It will take around two hours — not counting stops you’ll want to make at various shops, restaurants and parks. If you take photos, like we did, you’ll spend multiple days there.
Last week, we focused on the Park Slope section of the avenue. Now, we head south.
Glass-clad condo building
From convent to condos. Now that’s a study in contrasts.
At the very end of Brooklyn’s Fifth Avenue, a brand-new apartment building stands on a site where nuns lived.
Even if you’re too young to remember there was a convent at 401 95th St. before the Arcadia Bay Ridge condos were constructed, you’ll see another big contrast when you walk down the avenue.
The glass-clad condo building is right across the street from St. Patrick’s, a yellow-brick 1920s church with a bell tower and a rose window.
The Bay Ridge span of Fifth Avenue is a great place for a stroll.
The logical way to take this walk is by starting at the car dealerships on the corner of 65th Street and heading south. Along the way, there’s a fascinating mix of Middle-Eastern restaurants and shops, businesses with longevity like Mike’s Donuts and the cutest canine mural ever.
Before we show you interesting sights on our north-to-south Bay Ridge trek, we first want to spotlight the avenue’s very last block, where seven-story condo building 401 95th St. is located.
Condo sponsor J&J Property & Management Group LLC bought the former convent site from St. Patrick’s for $3 million in 2009, city Finance Department records show.
According to a posting on website We3.com, in February the state Attorney General accepted a condo offering plan for Arcadia Bay Ridge filed by attorney Jodi B. Zimmerman of Ficara & Associates PC. There are 22 residential units, one commercial unit and 13 parking spaces.
The Attorney General’s real estate finance database says the expected total sellout price is $23.637 million. The sponsor’s principals are Tak Kwong Cheung, Hing Ying Cheung, Tin Tak Cheng and Po Yung Cheng.
When we checked StreetEasy.com’s posting about Arcadia Bay Ridge after our stroll, asking prices for available condos ranged from $918,000 for a two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment to $525,000 for a one-bedroom, one-bathroom unit.
A pre-Civil War parish for Catholic soldiers
Because of the way Bay Ridge’s street grid is laid out, Fourth and Fifth avenues form a V at 95th Street and Fifth Avenue disappears. Fourth Avenue continues south to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.
Because of this set-up, the Roman Catholic Church of St. Patrick has a Fourth Avenue address although it’s directly across 95th Street from Arcadia Bay Ridge on Fifth Avenue.
St. Patrick’s has a storied history. It was first established as a mission in the 1840s. Back then, St. Patrick’s served as the parish for Catholic soldiers at Fort Hamilton.
The church building that preceded the present-day one was built in the early 1850s. Fort Hamilton soldiers’ donations of one dollar per week helped to pay for its construction.
A remedy for bald tires and a billiard hall
Now let’s circle back to the northern end of Bay Ridge and take this stroll. The first spot that will catch your eye is 67 Street Tire Shop, which is in a storefront at 6702 Fifth Ave. There’s always a display of tires outside on the sidewalk.
When we’re not distracted by bakeries like Jean Danet at 7526 Fifth Ave. or Leske’s at 7612 Fifth Ave., there’s an array of old-fashioned, mixed-use buildings to see.
* A handsome building at 6752 Fifth Ave. on the corner of 68th Street was sold for $2 million last November, Finance Department records show.
* There’s a “For Sale” sign on a distinctive building on the corner of Ovington Avenue whose address is 6929 Fifth Ave.
The asking price for the old-fashioned house with a ground-floor cafe and two recently gut-renovated apartments is $3.2 million, a posting by Ben Bay Realty listing agent Lucy Badwan says.
According to Finance Department records, when 6929 Fifth Ave. last changed hands in 2016, the price paid for it was $2.6 million.
* Right next door, another distinctive building is also for sale.
The asking price is $7.5 million for the Hall of Fame Billiards building at 505 Ovington Ave., a marketing flyer posted by CPEX Real Estate’s Timothy King and Dimitri Venekas says. The building is 19,000 square feet in size and there are about 8,000 square feet of air rights.
And they called it puppy love
Our favorite commercial signage in Bay Ridge says “Oasis Vision Center” and is painted, along with evocative palm trees, on the side of the building at 7411 Fifth Ave.
You can see the classic signage if you stand on the corner of Bay Ridge Parkway and turn and face north. On that corner, you’ll also get an eyeful of Art Deco-style Lincoln Savings Bank, which was built in 1934. The architecture firm that designed it was Koch & Wagner.
The distinguished stone building at 7427 Fifth Ave. now houses a JPMorgan Chase branch.
That old Paul Anka song, “Puppy Love,” will come into your head when you get to 91st Street.
As you walk south on the west side of Fifth Avenue, you’ll come face to face with larger-than-life canines on a mural. It’s painted on the side wall of Fifth Avenue Veterinary Hospital, whose address is 9102 Fifth Ave.
On the next block, FDNY’s Engine 242 firehouse at 9219 Fifth Ave. is worth a look.
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