Elissa Olin is the owner of Green in BKLYN, a one-stop shop for an eco-friendly home and life located between Clinton and Waverly avenues. Elissa opened her store on the block three years ago and considered it the perfect block for her business.
“It was the perfect location for foot traffic, and customers that go to other businesses would also be interested in mine,” she said.
Olin said the block is just as ideal as it was when she decided to open her business there.
“This block hasn’t changed much,” she said. “It’s a pretty stable block in that for the most part, things aren’t changing and in my case that’s actually really helpful because the businesses are really complimentary to mine.”
Green in BKLYN shares the block with a B54 bus stop to Ridgewood, CitiBank, Doo’s Barber Shop, Karen’s Body Beautiful, Three Stars Laundromat, Myrtle Thai, Connecticut Muffin, Clinton Hill Express Deli and Karrot.
The block also boasts some of the 20 custom-designed tree guards and benches for pedestrians to sit and enjoy a break from the blistering summer sun.
Olin said that although the block is not lacking, there is one thing that she would like to see come to an empty store on the corner of Waverly and Myrtle avenues.
“The empty spot on the corner could have some really groovy home goods,” she said, “or a donut shop. A donut shop on the corner would be awesome.”
But that donut store will just be wishful thinking for Olin. Mark’s Gourmet Burgers is set to open at that empty spot on the corner this summer. Olin is just one of the many people in the area who consider the block perfect.
Bryant Bemberry has lived in the area for five years, and he said the block was not always what it is now and has made a tremendous transformation.
“Ten years ago, this block was a mess,” he said. “It was very dilapidated. Now it’s an up-and-coming area and it’s a different financial situation in this area as opposed to 10 years ago.”
Bemberry said the block has seen a monumental upgrade in businesses, as well.
“As wealth moves in, the businesses become more elaborate,” he said. “You have a lot of different products that you wouldn’t normally have because of the difference in income levels.”
Carlos Aguila is an employee of Karrot and he agrees that the block has really transformed.
“It was a ghetto 10 years ago,” he said. “It changed a lot. The people coming to the neighborhood are different and there is now a big mixture. There are people who come here from all over the world and the country.”
The efforts to revitalize that block is a part of a bigger project, the Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership, to “restore the 'Main Street' of the Fort Greene and Clinton Hill community to a bustling, economically vital neighborhood.”
Aguila has taken note of the efforts and said the block is going to keep on changing for the better.
“It’s not going back to what it used to be,” he said. “It’s the promised land of this part of Brooklyn.”