The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Don't Bank On It

Back at the dawn of the 21st century, twas a bank on the banks of the Caton. HSBC was its name-o, but it closed not long after the Q opened his account there (unrelated). Right now it's my favorite local 99 cent store, bright and full of all the knick-knacks you could possibly need and even more that you don't. My girls love it. And I'll be sad to see it go.

Because this is (was) a truly grand building. In its heyday I'm quite sure it was one of the lovelier banks about along the Middle Flabenue. Without question the rush to develop Flatbush Avenue is on. You've seen some of the mid-block buildings that have gone up, and there are tons of squat "taxpayer" buildings with retail that are easy pickings. Some of the Flatbush mixed-use buildings have had their apartments boarded up for years. It's safe to say that Flatbush will look very different in just a few years time. This new building is on the SE corner, but as you know a massive affordable housing complex will soon replace the now shuttered Caton Market. Talk about sea change. 

Read all about it here on Real Deal

Well past time to pull your money out of the HSBC that used to was
 And for more perspective, here's the Caton building that's going up kitty corner. I love that they left the world's nastiest Key Food in the rendering. Hard to imagine it will survive the upsell.


Anonymous said...

And 123 Linden to lord over it all. (Sort of amazed how this goes mostly unremarked, you can see the construction lights and crane from Grand Army Plaza)

diak said...

That must be an old picture of the bank. Currently that historic building is nearly completely covered with gigantic hideous banners and signs that should—in a city that had any respect for design—be grounds for felony charges (Assault on Eyeballs; first degree).

Pity they couldn't (well, wouldn't) use the existing structure and build up from there. I believe the beautiful ceiling inside is still intact and would make for a spectacular lobby. But sadly that's not the kind of innovative building design we can expect around here. We'll get more vanilla boxes—but at least they're unlikely to have FINAL CLOSEOUT!!!! in four-foot high letters decorating the ground floor.

Brenda from Flatbush said...

Amen to both comments above. The monstrous thing rising in front of Congregational Nursing Home can be seen down Church Avenue from as far as Argyle Road if you get the angle right (well, wrong). I'm getting worn down with overdevelopment.

Bob Marvin said...

I opened an account at the Fulton Savings bank shortly after moving here in '74. It's a lovely building, but it was NOT a great bank and I closed that account a few years later. FWIW it was a GREAT pleasure to pull my meager savings out of the former Greater New York Savings Bank in Park Slope To deposit them in a Flatbush bank. I much enjoyed telling GNYSB WHY, when asked. They had refused to even let me fill out a mortgage application. They had stopped accepting mortgage applications for any old city houses, in any Brooklyn neighborhood.

PVW said...

Wow, I remember as well when it was the Fulton Savings Bank. Then it became the Metropolitan Bank, then Crossland Savings, then Republic National Bank before it became HSBC.

My folks banked there when I was a kid. I opened up my first checking account as a high school senior when it was the Metropolitan.

I always admired how stately the building looked, the same way I admired the Lincoln Bank as well.

But then the lovely and fancy buildings got subdivided. The bank got a smaller footprint and it didn't look stately any more. Of course, it got worse when the branch closed down.

And now the building will be gone.


Anonymous said...

Ahhhh Flatbush... Where the shopkeeps don't take down the Grand Opening signs until the bulldozers show up to take the building down.

Anonymous said...

As someone who tried to broker this building out to multiple retail and office operations, I can't stress enough how unwilling most commercial operations are to re-purpose a beautiful building like this one. The vaults in the basement are still intact and gorgeous, the ceiling is a work of art, there's a second-floor mezzanine and tons of potential office space. Sad that it'll be torn down but that's supply and demand, people!