More movement on Duffield Street

for The Brooklyn Paper
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The “Underground Railroad” is surrounded.

Three properties on Duffield Street — lumped together by their real-estate broker as the “Albee Square Assemblage” — are on sale for an asking price of $33 million.

Zoning regulations passed in 2004 allow would-be buyers to tear down the low-rise buildings and build up to 40 stories.

“The zoning allows for almost anything,” said Brian Leary, managing partner at Massey Knakal Realty Services.

The sale could gentrify the neighborhood, say many residents and workers on the street, which includes two not-for-sale homes whose owners believe were once stops along the Underground Railroad.

“What can we do about it?” asked Simone, who works nearby. “They’re going to put them up anyway.”

One of the owners who is selling felt optimistic.

“I’m all for it,” said Jayson Donegan. “Downtown Brooklyn has to be revitalized.”

Donegan, who owns Jayson’s Psychic Tea Room, disagrees with some in the community who are trying to protect some buildings on Duffield Street as landmarks.

“The buildings are not historic,” Donegan said.

Updated 4:27 pm, July 9, 2018
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