Port Sheepshead Marina, nothing but rubble.
Despite more than a week of cleaning, Emmons Avenue’s eastern end, a strip of waterfront condos, bungalows and boating clubs, remains in shambles.
We visited Emmons Avenue’s two waterfront bungalow colonies earlier this week, and, though Hurricane Sandy destroyed several homes and left families for the streets, there had been no visits from FEMA, Red Cross or any examples of the volunteer frenzy other neighborhoods have received.
In the absence of outside help, neighbors banded together to help each other.
Keep reading, and view a photo gallery of the destruction in the bungalow colonies.
The only entrance to Lake Avenue became impassable once water started tumbling down from Emmons Avenue, and debris littered the alleyway.
There is no shortage of heroes that came out of the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, but it seems everyone on Lake Avenue agrees that two quick thinking residents of their bungalow colony and a nearby landlord are their first first responders.
The Nostrand Avenue condo building where Lake Avenue residents found refuge from the flood.
One of several Lake Avenue buildings that are now deemed uninhabitable by the Department of Buildings.
When flood waters breached the bulkhead of Sheepshead Bay and engulfed Emmons Avenue, it advanced forward, rushing into the bungalow colony alleys located below street level. With no drainage systems, approximately 60 residents of Lake Avenue – just off Nostrand Avenue and Emmons Avenue – realized their one-story bungalows were about to be submerged.
“All of a sudden the water started pouring into the house. My 94-year-old father and I live in the house together,” said Lake Avenue resident Wendy Mitchell.
That’s when neighbors Missy Haggerty and Peter McCandless rushed out of their homes and began banging on doors, telling people to get out. Some were sleeping or in the middle of eating dinner, and looked up the block to see a waterfall rushing down the steps into the colony’s dead end alley.
“I got out and I’m trying to hold the door open [for my 94-year-old father] and Peter got him out finally,” Mitchell said. “When we first left, the water was up to the knees. By the time we got about five houses down it was under my arms. I’m five-foot-five and it was under my arms.”
Mitchell said she never would have been able to get out of there if it weren’t for Missy and Peter – and the landlord of a nearby building that abuts the alley.
Continue Reading »
While the looting situation has not been that bad in Sheepshead Bay compared to other hard hit neighborhoods, we haven’t been spared completely.
Greenlawn Bungalow Colony resident Bruce Z. wrote to us, “There has been looting here every night. I put this in front of my bungalow.”
I sure do hope it helps. And I hope no one steals the skeleton.
This week’s Midweek Photo comes in from Lisanne via Flickr. She’s been quietly documenting the construction at this house on East 14th Street and Avenue V, and the recent direction of it comes as a pleasant surprise from where she thought it was going. She writes on Flickr, “Wow, they’re not going to be building two additional stories the way they have been doing on this block when they “reconstruct” a bungalow.”
You can see how it looked before they began work – and when it had no roof – over in her Flickr collection.
Courtesy of Nathan Kensinger
Brighton Beach and Sheepshead Bay share a lot of things. A huge Eastern European population. A beautiful waterfront. And a screwed up history of poorly planned development. The last bit got highlighted in Brighton Beach by urban photographer Nathan Kensinger. He turned his lens to Brighton’s abandoned bungalows and condos, and through photos and text gives a great retelling of the Beach’s history. He describes the nabe as “pockmarked with abandoned construction sites, huge empty lots, and boarded up buildings. Arsonists, squatters and drug dealers have moved in to these unclaimed spaces … a few remaining summer bungalows have born the brunt of the damage.” Some might take issue with his comparisons with the Rockaways, and some might also say that he fails to highlight the good side. But as a story of poor planning scarring a community for generations to come, I think Kensinger tells it just fine.
· Brighton Beach Bungalows [via Curbed]