Tuesday, July 10, 2007

We're Losing Our Capes!

This post is the first in a series we'll call "We're Losing Our Capes!"
Southern and Eastern Queens are filled with what we call a Queens-style cape home. They were obviously built in the 1950s and have individual charm. Some have partial brick fronts. Others have a couple of extra dormers. Regardless, they say "here's a taste of the suburban life."

Well, times have changed. The trend over the past couple of years is to take an existing home and turn it inside out. Make them bigger. Buy a one-level ranch - then build a second story to it. The biggest thing we've noticed are the ones that are taking these cape homes and turning them into small palaces. Yes, we know the home ownership rules has changed. It does benefit a homeowner when they have a two or multi-family home because having an extra tenant can help pay the mortgage. They say it also makes for a better tax break.

It's one thing to buy a plot of land and build a home up from scratch. But we're against those who strip a perfectly in-tact cape home (or any home for that matter) apart and refurbish it into a McMansion. Our motto: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Our pics for this post features a brick McMansion, located on 130th Avenue.




We don't have proof, but we're willing to be a million dollars we don't have that it used to be a Queens cape. Usually where there's one cape, there's two. You'll see the neighboring cape below.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Im a little confused. I thought Southside was an impoverished neighborhood, i am from near there. Why are they building Mc Mansions?

The Progressive Southside said...

Areas around Baisley Pond Park & Rochdale Village and around the Belt Parkway - it's a different story. There are good things here. There are untold stories and pictures that aren't shared. That's why we created this blog.

Some have different views on McMansions. One is that single family homes don't sell or profit like they use to. So tearing them down and building two-family and multi-family homes helps to pay off the mortgage for some residents.

Anonymous said...

my parents still live in SJ in a 1960's cape and almost their entire block has been redone. now when I visit there isn't any place to park and has lost the suburban air that I grew up in. I fondly remember playing with friends in the street(baseball, football etc). I was there for the 4th and can count the few kids seen. How sad.

Anonymous said...

Do What You Want In America?

What is most troubling to me is the disrespect for neighbors and community. These illegal conversions' and the illegal parking are a disrespect for law and order. They are destroying our communities and over burdening city resources.
If a landlord has no respect or commitment to their community neither will their tenants.

This is clearly a quality of life issue!
The amount of cars with out of state(stolen) plates is astonishing.
Like Carpetbaggers these illegal tenants move in late at night carrying black plastic bags.

Often these illegal tenants are not given keys to the house and rap on doors and windows all hours to gain access.

Neighbors are complaining of stolen plants from their yards, graffetti, shopping carts, abandon cars, dogs running loose, junky yards and strangers loitering.

Homes built for a family of 4 are housing 10
people with six cars.

While many homes have went through major renovations for the better; over crowding will surely have a big affect on these communities.

Turning these surbuban feeling communities into slums.

Many of my neighbors are long time residents, fighting an endless battle with no law enforcement of Quality of Life Issues.


City officials are doing nothing about this problem.

While I like my home; the pleasure of sitting in my yard is gone.

Why should I (Taxpayer and Voter) alter my life style to Rooming house Slum living?

Its gone to far to reverse the situation and it may be time to leave for the quality of life I desire.

Anonymous said...

Do What You Want In America?

What is most troubling to me is the disrespect for neighbors and community. These illegal conversions' and the illegal parking are a disrespect for law and order. They are destroying our communities and over burdening city resources.
If a landlord has no respect or commitment to their community neither will their tenants.

This is clearly a quality of life issue!
The amount of cars with out of state(stolen) plates is astonishing.
Like Carpetbaggers these illegal tenants move in late at night carrying black plastic bags.

Often these illegal tenants are not given keys to the house and rap on doors and windows all hours to gain access.

Neighbors are complaining of stolen plants from their yards, graffetti, shopping carts, abandon cars, dogs running loose, junky yards and strangers loitering.

Homes built for a family of 4 are housing 10
people with six cars.

While many homes have went through major renovations for the better; over crowding will surely have a big affect on these communities.

Turning these surbuban feeling communities into slums.

Many of my neighbors are long time residents, fighting an endless battle with no law enforcement of Quality of Life Issues.


City officials are doing nothing about this problem.

While I like my home; the pleasure of sitting in my yard is gone.

Why should I (Taxpayer and Voter) alter my life style to Rooming house Slum living?

Its gone to far to reverse the situation and it may be time to leave for the quality of life I desire.

Anonymous said...

I live in Rosedale , and have since 1953 . The houses look very nice . The people are disrespectful of others driveways , and I have to chase them away every other week . The rentals , and that what they are in most cases , multi family rental apartments , owned and rented by others that don't live there , are occupied by people who don't even know how to put out the trash properly .
NYC just looks at it as more tax income .
The rentals look at it as a place to litter , disregard stop signs , and steel bikes from a neighbor 2 houses away ( proven ).
The original residents look at it as a degradation of the neighborhood , loss of parking , and security risk .