South Williamsburg gentrification creates tension

March 09, 2012 03:30PM

The latest pocket of Williamsburg to get restaurants and pricey new housing developments is South Williamsburg, a neighborhood traditionally occupied by the close-knit Hasidic Jewish community, the Wall Street Journal reported.

In the past four months three new restaurants have joined the area’s landmarks, such as Peter Luger steakhouse: the Whirlybird coffee shop, Kabob Shack and Mercado on Kent. The South Williamsburg area is generally defined as east of Union Avenue, south of Grand Street and north of Division Avenue, the paper said.

New residential developments in the neighborhood include the massive Domino Sugar refinery development, which still does not have a date for opening, and 88 South First Street –a development comprised of townhouse homes that hit the market in October.

Some long-time residents of the area are not so pleased with the changes, however.

“Every time I go for a walk around the neighborhood, I see signs for a new place opening where some of us can’t afford to eat or shop,” resident Jose Vargas, told the Journal. “It’s only a matter of time before we can’t afford to live here.” [WSJ]