Crown Heights Goes Commercial
1000 Dean Gets The Brooklyn Flea (and a Beer Hall)
The days of schlepping to work in DUMBO—or worse, Midtown—may soon be over, thanks to the latest project from Jonathan Butler, founder of Brownstoner and the Brooklyn Flea. The long-awaited commercial offices at 1000 Dean Street (formerly the Studebaker Service Station) have been in the works since 2012, and now the four-story 1920s industrial building has been renovated into the kind of workspaces entrepreneurial Brooklynites drool over. Vast and airy, the offices invite outside-the-box thinking from diverse industries in “a sort of self-sufficient business ecosystem with designers, programmers, content producers, writers, lawyers, accountants, and hopefully a yoga studio, too,” Butler says. But perhaps the most notable part of the project is its surrounding environment.
Crown Heights doesn’t boast much in the way of commercial office space as opposed to, say, Gowanus, Williamsburg, the Navy Yard, or DUMBO, where real estate costs climb by the millisecond. “DUMBO has been the epicenter of the creative office space market for the last decade, but it’s gotten more expensive and more dominated by a handful of large Internet companies,” Butler says. As a resident of Crown Heights himself, Butler understood firsthand the need for a commercial hub in the heavily populated area where the neighborhood intersects with Bed-Stuy, Clinton Hill and Prospect Heights. That instinct also helped him land a deal. “The timing was pretty good,” he says. “We were able to buy the building right before Crown Heights prices really started to take off.” So far, 1000 Dean is already home to nonprofits, video editors, online booksellers and a flea market operator—and space is still available. One month’s rent costs roughly $2 per square foot, depending on other factors like how much light it gets. But it won’t come without perks: on the ground floor, the Brooklyn Flea will operate a 9,000-square-foot food hall and beer garden, so if there’s a downside to renting here, it’s that tenants might see a first-quarter increase in waistband sizes.