Victorian homes, brick townhouses, and colorful awnings line the streets of Flatbush, Brooklyn but it wasn’t always this way. In the early 1900s, the area was characterized by big housing developments, attracting residents from Brooklyn Heights and a diverse melting pot of immigrants from all over the world. Now that fast-changing area is offering an updated Brooklyn experience for young professionals, milennials, and longtime residents. Amid the bustling changes, the three-way intersection at Nostrand and Flatbush Aveune, also known as “The Junction”, has become a hub that welcomes locals, emerging business, and shoppers from the greater Brooklyn area.
In the face of an ongoing gentrification shift, The Junction serves as a connection to community-based initiatives complete with the trappings of modern day amenities and stores. The latest addition comes in the form of a brand new Chipotle, a fast food chain specializing in Mexican fare, which will bring employment opportunities and millennial comfort to the booming Junction area.
According to market research presented by the Business Improvement District (BID), a whopping 320,000 people live within a 1.5 mile radius of The Junction and they spend over $3 billion annually. During an interview with Kenneth Mbonu, executive director of the Flatbush Junction BID, he explains why the area is becoming more and more popular for business developers.
“Most people know exactly what you’re referring to when you say ‘The Junction’ and with the addition of students from the Brooklyn College, The Junction has become a strong building ground for brands,” says Mbonu.
On average, about 16,500 students attend Brooklyn College each year and are directly exposed to The Junction based on it’s proximity to the school.
In addition, 34,000 people work within a 1 mile radius of the area, providing daily foot traffic and purchasing power. Currently stores like Target, Starbucks, Home Goods, Children’s Place, Dallas BBQ, Applebee’s, Blink Fitness, David’s Bridal, Men’s Warehouse and the Flatbush YMCA are all housed within the limits of The Junction, creating a consumer hub. Serving as a transportation hub, a college student haven, and a functional mall, it’s easy to understand why mainstream businesses are eyeing the area.
“We are pleased that other people have begun to recognize the potential that The Junction possesses and we’re excited to watch these businesses contribute to the community,” says Mbonu.