Sunset Park Studio Squeeze for Artists
Kate Hawes. Photo by Clarity Haynes

Sunset Park Studio Squeeze for Artists


As part of our ongoing Affordability Project, WNYC is taking a close look at Sunset Park in Brooklyn. Kate Hawes has been making custom solid wood furniture in Brooklyn for 20 years. This summer, she picked up and moved her shop from Sunset Park to the Catskills. Her landlord decided to raise the rent by 25 percent in one year.

But the rent increase wasn’t the only reason she decided to leave her studio.

“That was the final straw,” Hawes said. “Everything was just a headache with the landlord.”

It can sometimes happen in a gentrifying neighborhood that some landlords choose not to be good landlords because they know there are plenty of eager renters waiting in the wings. That’s already happened with Hawes; her former studio is already rented.

Despite it all, Hawes isn’t sad about giving up her Brooklyn studio.

“It’s a struggle,” she said.


Co-published with WNYC Studios.

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