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Arts and Entertainment, Brooklyn Heights

Cleaning Up in Brooklyn Heights

December 5, 2013

Brooklyn Heights has never felt so fresh.

Just in time for the holidays, the bustling Brooklyn Heights intersection of Clark and Henry is about to smell a whole lot better, thanks to local soap makers Ross Caudill and his fiancé Joanna Maltese. Named after the famed intersection, Clark & Henry recently opened as an online shop with aspirations of retail success selling soap and household objects in Brooklyn Heights.

Their work is collaborative and the soap is a product of love. Both have a background in and passion for creation, Joanna is knowledgable in design and Ross is a multi-discipline artist. Yet at the onset of their soap-making project, neither really understood soap as a product. After months of research, reading, seminars, and experiments, they have honed the process of soap creation and are now packaging soap by hand in their Henry Street apartment.

Over email, Ross detailed the fascinating process:

A solution of sodium hydroxide is prepared separately. At the precise point when this is the same temperature as the oils they must be quickly mixed together to begin the chemical reaction which creates soap. After much blending, the exfoliants and essential oils are added. Finally the batch is cast into the molds. All of the components in the recipe are purposeful and curated for the attributes they bring to the final product. The fragrance is derived from the essential oils. The scrubbiness from the natural exfoliants has to be just right. The soap’s lather must be bubbly and creamy and cleansing, but also leave the skin feeling conditioned.

Joanna peels and prepares local cucumbers as Ross carefully tweaks the chemistry. Together they grind the exfoliant and prepare the casts. The result is a product and a business that avoids the potential pitfalls of artisnal pretense, yet remains charming and sincerely local.

Clark & Henry as an enterprise was in no small part inspired by the couple’s fondness of the neighborhood. Joanna smiles as she recalls returning to Brooklyn Heights after a brief stint in Park Slope, and how the couple’s product is created by hand with a ‘neighbors first’ attitude. “We wanted to make something to make our neighbors smile,” she told me over coffee at Vineapple.

Already considering creating a line of chairs, if the soap is successful the two would like to expand their product offering to include useful household items.

“We always feel a sense of accomplishment when we finish casting a batch of soap,” said Ross, explaining why they chose to start a business in Brooklyn Heights. Regardless of the success of Clark & Henry as a business, Ross and Joanna will continue to craft creative products in Brooklyn Heights for years to come.

Source: Brooklyn Heights Blog

From the Web

Brooklyn Heights, Real Estate

Brooklyn Firms Lead Realtor Effort For Sandy Relief

November 13, 2012

TerraCRG and are continuing much-needed efforts for Hurricane Sandy Relief, in a partnership with “United Way Rallies NYC Real Estate Industry Support for Storm Victims.” The commercial real estate brokerage with its partners is launching a fund-raising effort to facilitate and encourage donations from the real estate community to benefit victims of Hurricane Sandy through a secure webpage created to gather the donations.

All proceeds will be used by local United Way chapters to address near and long-term hurricane recovery needs in communities that FEMA has declared disaster areas, with “aggressive monetary goals to help aid those in need. The goal of this effort is to unify the New York City real estate community to make a difference in the lives of the many people who experienced devastation and have been severely affected by the storm.” Both TerraCRG and have each contributed $10,000 to the effort.

Ofer Cohen, founder & president of TerraCRG, and David Maundrell, founder & president of are directing the efforts. Cohen notes, “We would like to see the entire real estate industry in New York come together. While our lives in North Brooklyn and Manhattan have been slowly returning to normal, many residents and businesses in the hard hit area of Southwest Brooklyn and Staten Island, Queens and Long Island are dramatically impacted and will remain so for months.”

The webpage,, is linked directly to the United Way’s website infrastructure.

Source: Brooklyn Heights Blog

From the Web


NYPD 76th Precinct NYPD Community Affairs Tips & Info Following Superstorm

October 30, 2012

New York Police Department’s 76th Precinct’s Community Affairs Bureau shares the following with all area residents…
Multiple road closures are now in effect due to the impact of the hurricane.
* The following bridges are now closed: Henry Hudson, Throgs Neck, Bronx-Whitestone, Verrazano Narrows, Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges, Cross Bay Veterans Memorial, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg, Joseph P. Addabbo Memorial, Ed Koch Queensboro (59th St), Outerbridge Crossing, Bayonne, Tappan Zee and George Washington bridges.
* The following tunnels are closed: Holland and the Hugh Carey (Battery Tunnel). The FDR Drive is closed from East 155 Street to the Battery. Multiple other road and bridge closures can occur at any time due to impending storm conditions.

Alternate Side Parking regulations (street cleaning) and payment at parking meters is suspended throughout the city thru Tuesday 10/30. You may call 311 to report downed trees. Power outages should be reported to 1-800-75-CONED.

Source: Cobble Hill Blog

From the Web

Brooklyn’s Community Board 2 Meeting: Wednesday, September 12

September 7, 2012

Brooklyn’s Community Board 2 will hold its next general meeting Wednesday, September 12, 2012 at 6 p.m. in the third-floor auditorium of The Brooklyn Hospital Center, 121 DeKalb Avenue at St. Felix Street. The meet will include presentations from Dr. Richard Becker, President & CEO of The Brooklyn Hospital; and Dr. Stacy De-Lin, with the Committee of Residents and Interns at the Save Our Safety Net Campaign. Other items include the Chairperson’s Report from John Dew, District Manager’s Report from Robert Perris, as well as an Open Session for community issues.

Source: Cobble Hill Blog

From the Web

Police Blotter

Brooklyn’s 76 Precinct Offers ‘Cash for Guns’ Initiative September 15

September 7, 2012

Capt. J. D. Schiff, Commanding Officer for the 76th Precinct of Brooklyn, has alerted the CHB that on Saturday, September 15, the NYPD, NYC Council, Kings County District Attorney and NYPD Brooklyn Clergy Coalition will sponsor a program that pays cash for any operable firearm. They are offering a $200 bank card for a handgun and $20 bank card for a rifle/shotgun. He stresses: “No questions asked.”

The Brooklyn Gun Buy-Back Program takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Evergreen Baptist Church: 455 Evergreen Avenue, between Woodbine Street and Palmetto Street. No active or retired law enforcement weapons are accepted. The 76th Precinct is located at 191 Union Street in Brooklyn.

Source: Cobble Hill Blog

From the Web

Brooklyn Heights, Real Estate

It Pays To Live In Brooklyn: We’re The Second Most-Expensive City In The Nation

September 6, 2012

This isn’t necessarily the kind of statistic that fosters a giddy smile. According to a story in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Brooklyn is the second most expensive city in the nation, topped only by our sister to the west: Manhattan. The Washington-based Council for Community & Economic Research based its survey primarily on housing. There is no neighborhood breakdown, but past studies would obviously place Brooklyn Heights, DUMBO and Williamsburg at the peak of the borough’s hierarchy.

Behind Brooklyn are: Honolulu, San Francisco, San Jose, Queens and Stamford. Conn. The Council’s evaluation ranked 300 American cities based on other factors, as well, including utilities, transportation, grocery prices (damn you, Gristedes!) and prescription drug prices.

Using the number 100 to represent the national average, Brooklyn ranked at 183.4 overall: 129.9 in groceries, 126.4 in utilities, 104 in transportation costs and 111.1 in healthcare—along with a whopping 344.7 in housing. Manhattan’s average was 233.5. The Eagle points out that this means housing costs in Brooklyn are more than three times the average American city, like Erie, Pa., or Charlottesville, Va.

Borough President Marty Markowitz told the Eagle, “Brooklyn is thrilled that so many successful men and women, particularly in professional fields, have chosen to live here, adding to our economic diversity and making it one of the most desirable places on the planet to live, work and play. But we are also mindful that Brooklyn must never be a place of only the very rich or the very poor.”

Carlo Scissura, president of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, added, “As Brooklynites, we want to be No. 1 in everything, but I don’t think we want to be Number 1 or 2 in this survey. We want to keep the middle class here. We don’t want them to leave.”

(Graphic: Chuck Taylor)

Source: Brooklyn Heights Blog

From the Web

NYC Increases Budget For Citywide Tree Maintenance

July 7, 2012

New York City may be offering its neighborhoods an olive branch—or at least snippers to prune it—with a substantial budget increase for care of street and park trees. Over the past decade, NYC’s declining bottom line has given responsibility for beautification and maintenance in the Heights to the Brooklyn Heights Association, which has overseen a cyclical block pruning program. Since 2001, it has dedicated more than $75,000 to pruning, planting and tree care from member donations. A major BHA effort took place in February and March.

For the fiscal year that begins this week, NY’s City Council added $2 million for tree pruning to the $1.45 million in Mayor Bloomberg’s proposed budget. The extra money is part of $30 million in restorations to the Parks Department’s budget, including money for public pools.

Of course, the move equates to more than a green thumb from the city. According to The New York Times, falling trees and limbs have led to a marked increase in injuries, deaths and lawsuits. “Tree pruning is something where you don’t see the impact of deferring until there’s a tragedy,” Park Slope-based Councilman Brad Lander told the Times. “Hopefully, getting pruning back on a better schedule will mean New Yorkers will be safer.”

Money added for tree care would put street trees on a more timely pruning cycle. Because of budget cuts, the pruning rotation had been elongated to every 15 years from once every 7 years in 2008. During that time, the budget for street-tree pruning contracts fell to $1.4 million from $4.7 million.

Source: Brooklyn Heights Blog

From the Web

Most Walkable Nabes In NYC: Brooklyn Heights & Cobble Hill

April 14, 2012

No surprise to those of us in the know, but hipster pub The L Magazine notes that Brooklyn Heights and Cobble Hill are “the most walkable neighborhoods in Brooklyn,” according to a study by Walk Score published on website Slate.

The webbie bases its “walk scores” on the amount and accessibility of amenities, including restaurants, movie theater and schools. New York City is the most walkable out of 50 cities surveyed, with a score of 85.3 out of 100, which The L Word notes was knocked down by “unwalkable” Staten Island.

In Brooklyn, Cobble Hill and Brooklyn Heights had scores of 98. Boerum Hill and Downtown Brooklyn scored 97; DUMBO, Carroll Gardens, Gowanus and Park Slope tied with 96. The least walkable Brooklyn neighborhoods are all in the south: Bergen Beach with a score of 58; Mill Basin with 62; Gerritsen Beach with 71; Canarsie with 74; and Manhattan Beach and West Brighton at 77.

Once again, The L Magazine provides the primary info, with supplemental info linked in the article.

(Photo: Chuck Taylor)

Source: Cobble Hill Blog

From the Web