Commerce & Culture
While some bemoan that the same national chains dominate retail in many New York City neighborhoods, it’s a charge that’s largely inaccurate when it comes to Bay Ridge. Third and Fifth avenues are lined by mostly local businesses, not franchises. (Toward the southern end of Bay Ridge, 86th Street is an exception. If you’re in search of a Modell’s Sporting Goods or a Century 21 department store, you’ll find them there.) The so-called “Arab Heart of Brooklyn” is concentrated in the northern part of the neighborhood, and Fifth Avenue near 72nd Street is where you should head if you are hungry for kebabs or baklava. While it may not be home to leading cultural institutions, Bay Ridge boasts that it has more happy-hour bars than anywhere else on earth. Even if that claim is perhaps dubious, when you see the busy after-work scene, mostly concentrated on Third Avenue, you’ll take it seriously.