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Curbed Cup 1st Round: (4) Prospect Heights vs. (13) Mott Haven

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Which neighborhood should advance? Cast your vote now!

Max Touhey for Curbed

Prospect Heights

It was a momentous year for Prospect Heights and its neighborhood-inside-a-neighborhood, Pacific Park. Six of the megaproject’s buildings are now in various phases of construction, with SHoP’s prefabricated rental tower at 461 Dean Street already welcoming residents. The housing lottery for 535 Carlton, a fully-affordable development within the megaproject, opened in July, and the market-rate apartments of 550 Vanderbilt continued their selling streak. For a project that’s been in the works since 2003, that’s no small deal. The buzzy neighborhood even got a little more so when Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o was spotted perusing apartments at 550 Vanderbilt back in August.

It isn’t only the strides at Pacific Park that merits Prospect Heights’s place of esteem in the Curbed Cup bracket. The neighborhood also welcomed instant classic and Michelin hopeful Olmstead, praised as the “neighborhood restaurant we’ve all been dreaming of” by Eater critic Ryan Sutton. Perennially popular pie shop Four & Twenty Blackbirds announced that it’d be opening up shop nearby too come February 2017, and the Islanders return for their second season at Barclays Center.

Mott Haven

Eyed as the next frontier of new development in NYC, the South Bronx neighborhood of Mott Haven has also had a big year. Starchitect Bjarke Ingels unveiled his plans for a new home to the 40th Police Precinct, which will cost no less than $50 million Update: The police precinct will be in spitting distance of Mott Haven, but will stand in Melrose. Empire State Development also issued a Request For Proposals for a 13-acre rail yard area north of Willis Avenue Bridge that could see a Hudson Yards-style development in the coming years, if local officials have their way.

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A photo posted by Liangelo King (@the_bx_) on

A fully-affordable 24-story residential tower that will become the city’s tallest passive house was also green lighted for the neighborhood in 2016. As a constituency for the 241-unit project, the city will give nearby Garrison Playground a much-needed facelift. Though both projects have yet to get underway, they’re symbolic of the larger changes coming to the relatively low-profile neighborhood.

One major sign that the neighborhood is poised for big changes is the opening of Filtered Coffee off of the Third Avenue Bridge. The storefront is Filtered’s first Bronx outpost, and its only shop backed by developer Keith Rubenstein whose firm Somerset Partners has set its sights on bringing two 25-story apartment and retail buildings to the neighborhood’s Harlem River waterfront. Cold press juice bar Born is also due to land in the neighborhood by early next year.