The McCarren Pool Has Done More For Gentrification Than The Barclays Center


  • Katie Sokoler/Gothamist

Not that it’s a competition, exactly, but this is still pretty interesting. Crain’s reported yesterday on new data from Eastern Consolidated indicating that as far as large-scale, neighborhood-changing civic projects, development brought on by the renovation of the McCarren Park Pool is actually outstripping comparable shifts in the neighborhoods surrounding the Barclays Center, though both have undergone what the site calls “explosive growth.”

Naturally, this mostly comes down to real estate prices, though Barclays did bring in significantly higher prices in the retail sector than either the pool or the also-profitable area surrounding the Williamsburg Waterfront. Anyway, a few hard numbers:

In terms of land sales, there were 14 within half a mile of McCarren Park in the last two years, with an average price $10.8 million. That compares to 10 deals within half a mile of the Barclays Center, where prices only averaged $2.6 million. The volume of multi-family properties around the park also outpaced the Barclays Center’s with about $95 million in sales in both 2011 and 2012 in the area around the park, compared to roughly $85 million near the arena in 2011 and $41 million in 2012. The average price for the former was a little over $490 a foot, compared to $400 a foot near Barclays.

Eastern Consolidated chief economist Barbara Byrne Denham explained, “Despite the bad press early on, I think the pool has really helped solidify the transformation of Williamsburg from a neighborhood that had been a big hipster hang out to a more family friendly place.” Or, in the words of Chris Havens, director of commercial property for, “Brooklyn is the place to be these days, it’s popping off, and these projects will only help keep it that way.” I guess the means a definitive end to all our jokes about pooping in the pool?

Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.


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