General Question

wundayatta's avatar

What is the Bowery like these days? What is Williamsburg like?

Asked by wundayatta (58693points) February 25th, 2009

It’s been over a decade since I lived in NYC, and I’m wondering how various places have changed. Maybe there are people here who can tell me. I remember the Bowery as being this dirty looking, smelly place, with run-down buildings, and a very seedy air.

The same is pretty much true for for my knowledge of Williamsburg. I understand that has changed greatly, with an influx of artists, followed by yuppies. So how does it feel and look now? How does the Bowery feel and look now?

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6 Answers

aprilsimnel's avatar


Over by the riverside in Williamsburg, there’s a slew of new condos being built. There’s a lot of cash floating around there now, but it still looks as junky and decrepit in some spots as it’s always been. Dominicans and Hasidim have been pushed farther away from Bedford Ave. and Driggs. The rich kids who are getting places eastward have gone to calling their part of Bushwick “East Williamsburg”. Pah. There are a lot of skinny-jeans-wearing and ironic-mustache-sporting hipsters. I have seen a few people dressed like preps running around, but very few.

The Bowery is experiencing similar gentrification. CBGB’s is gone. There’s a lot of new condo development and a Whole Foods down there. There’s a nifty museum there too. The streets are cleaned up and the homeless have mostly gone elsewhere in the city. The Salvation Army is still there, but it’s gotten a bit of a facelift. However, that old Victorian-looking abandoned building is still abandoned and still covered with graffiti. There’s more of a blend of hipsters and yupsters in the Bowery than in Willimasburg.

Mr_M's avatar

I can honestly say, the Bowery hasn’t changed a bit!

Now Times Square, on the other hand…

And the homeless are definitely still there. I get panhandled every time I go.

adreamofautumn's avatar

It depends on where you are in Willimsburg. Bordering Queens is just as dirty as ever for the most part. Some old Italian families still kicking around, but it’s really still not a very pleasant neighborhood. The Bowery…that hasn’t changed for basically as long as NYC has been there. It’s a bit more trendy now, lots of post-NYU types looking for a place to live, but still a pretty seedy area.

TitsMcGhee's avatar

The Bowery is thousands of times better, because I’m there :D

Williamsburg is full of college hipsters drinking PBR and smoking Parliaments

poofandmook's avatar

Bowery has its nicer parts and its seedier parts. But it seems to me like they’ve cleaned it up a lot since you’ve been there.

Amurph's avatar

Williamsburg was cool for a few years, and now looks / acts like Hoboken 75% of the time.

The Bowery is expensive, with condos and no CBGBs.

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