Neighborhood: Greenwood Heights
Population: Approximately 22,000 people live in this residential, working-class neighborhood.
Adjacent Neighborhoods: Park Slope, Sunset Park, South Slope
Public Transit: D/N/R to 36th St; R to 25th St; D to 9th Ave.
What’s Here?: As the name suggests, Greenwood Heights is a lush, wooded area located in Central Brooklyn. The true boundaries of the neighborhood are highly contested-then again, what New York City neighborhood doesn’t have that problem? It sits between Park Slope to the north and Sunset Park to the south, and has some flavor from each neighborhood: Sunset Park is predominantly Latino and working-class; Park Slope is home to some of Brooklyn’s richest, with shops and restaurants to match. Throughout the area, you’ll see row- and townhouses, with colorful vinyl siding, Spanish restaurants, and lots of factories. And of course, you’ll see Greenwood Cemetery, a surprisingly uncreepy attraction.
Flat or Tall?: They call it Greenwood Heights for a reason-it’s up on a hill. Previously, you could only find two-family homes here, but in recent years, with the influx of folks slipping down the Slope-Park Slope, that is-there’s been a spike in condo construction. However, height restrictions have since been imposed, preserving Greenwood Heights’ character as a naturally occurring high-rise.
History: Green-Wood Cemetery was established in 1838, and the neighborhood of Greenwood Heights (no hyphen) sprung from it thereafter. The ethnic demographics have changed many times over the years, with the area once a major locale for Polish, Scandinavian, and Italian immigrants, and now, mostly comprised of Mexicans, Dominicans, and Ecuadorians. The neighborhood’s blue-collar history is evident from the abundance of factories, auto shops, and gas stations-a history that is alive and well.
Activities: Believe it or not, you can actually tour Green-Wood Cemetery. At 478 acres, there’s enough space for a guided trolley ride, as well as bird-watching. For the seriously brave, they also have late-night flashlight tours. More traditional Greenwood Heights fare includes Sea Witch, a spacious garden and tavern on 5th Ave, and Melody Lanes Bowling Alley, also on 5th.
Check it out: Greenwood Park, a restaurant and beer garden on 7th Ave., weighs in at a whopping 13,000 square feet, and just opened in 2012. Also new to the hood is Toby’s Public House, a brick-oven pizza shop on 6th Ave.