Today’s match-up is a repeat of the Curbed Cup in 2011, when these two neighborhoods faced off in the final round. Fun!
Let’s start with the Financial District. The revitalized Lower Manhattan neighborhood has been making huge strides in the past few years, but 2016 saw one very big event: Santiago Calatrava’s WTC Transportation Hub (and its all-white, dinosaur rib-evoking sculptural topper) opened to the public, representing another huge step forward for progress at the World Trade Center site.
That, along with a few other notable moves—the debut (finally!) of Liberty Park; the area’s push forward as a dining destination; the opening of attention-getting hotels like the Beekman and the Four Seasons Hotel Downtown (on the border of FiDi and Tribeca, but still)—helped put the Financial District at the No. 2 seed, and it’s moved the area through the competition thus far, securing a spot in the Final Four.
FiDi has some stiff competition in Downtown Brooklyn, which breezed past Prospect Lefferts Gardens and Harlem to secure its place in the Final Four. Downtown Brooklyn also has the distinction of being a previous Curbed Cup winner: it took the ultimate prize in 2011.
And the neighborhood has only gotten more buzzy in the five years since it last captured the Cup: more new rentals have debuted, and after several years of planning, the first components of the long-awaited City Point megaproject—a Century 21 and the Alamo Drafthouse—finally debuted. Downtown Brooklyn will soon also be home to Brooklyn’s first supertall tower, as sure a sign as any that the neighborhood is destined for big things.
But is that enough to take it to the top once again? Or will this finally be the Financial District’s year? Cast your vote now to determine which neighborhood moves on to the final round.