A new seven-story apartment building will rise at 625 New York Avenue in East Flatbush, the site of Kings County Nurseries, reports The Brooklyn Paper.
The beloved nursery and landscaping business was opened by the Merola brothers in 1955 and has since been run by generations of the family. According to the city’s records, Joseph Merola Jr. still owns the site and the building on it. The family also owns a second site for parking, which has a pending permit for a second seven-story building.
The seven-story development on the 15,400-square-foot lot will have 45 apartments, according to a recently filed permit. Amenities will include a full cellar and rooftop structures.
The smaller seven-story development planned for the 4,500 square foot parking lot site will have 10 apartments and a community facility, the permit filing shows.
A thread in a neighborhood Facebook group on the nursery’s pending closure has over 75 comments. One local commenter stated, “Was just a matter of time. They’ve changed this neighborhood, overcrowded, no more personality, to herding folks in. Every empty space becomes a development, and the neighborhood is losing and has lost its character. Can’t even buy a house here anymore. It’s a wrap!!”
Over the past few years, several of New York Avenue’s small businesses and vacant lots have been bought by developers and converted into apartment buildings.
The Merola brothers first opened Kings County Nurseries with a commitment to the beautification of Brooklyn, according to the store’s website.
“It all started with three brothers and their love for gardening. That love turned into a neighborhood foundation that has been family owned and operated for over 65 years,” the website reads.
It is unclear when the nursery will close and it is not yet announced whether the family’s landscaping business will relocate after the site changes hands.
“From beautiful brownstones to high-rise buildings, we have contributed to making houses become homes. From ‘Pigtown’ to Flatbush to what we now know as Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, we have embraced the growth of this amazing community,” the website reads.