Gallery: Mysterious Brooklyn Heights Brownstone Actually Hides a Secret...

Walking around Brooklyn Heights, it's hard not to find your gaze captivated by the beautiful, historic brownstones that line the street. But if you've ever found yourself along Joralemon Street, you've probably spotted this bizarre three-story row house with blacked out windows and a massive steel lock holding its door shut. While you may think these are tell-tale signs of a paranoid NYC shut-in, this red brick row home actually conceals a secret portal to the NYC underground!

© Heather Quinian

The “home” stands at the Brooklyn end of the Joralemon Street Tunnel, which brings the 4 and 5  to and from Manhattan. The construction was in fact a residential building up until 1846, but in 1908 it was transformed a ventilation station to accommodate the air flow of the newly constructed tunnel. For decades, the home was simply known to those in the neighborhood as the “Shaft House”, as vented air would pour out from the windows without caution. In 1999 the MTA was pressed by local residents to restore the historic face of the building, and today, 58 Joralemon melds with its locale (for the most part). Funnily enough, neighbors have even reported seeing men dressed in special MTA work suits hanging around 58′s stoop in the middle of the night.

Brooklyn Heights’ beauty has attracted numerous well-known writers, public figures and even Hollywood celebs, and real estate definitely doesn’t come cheap in this neighborhood. With that said, 58 Joralemon is no exception, and in 2010, the property was estimated to be worth a whopping $2.8 million.

Via Messy Nessy Chic

Photos © Inhabitat unless otherwise noted


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