Prospect Park’s endangered horse stables, the last of their kind in the borough, have likely found a new buyer who will ensure that they don’t fall to luxury real estate development.
The Brooklyn Paper reports that the Blankenship family, the longtime operators of Kensington Stables, is in deep negotiations with the city to purchase the property and maintain it as stables. The funds to purchase the stables at 55 Caton Place at East 8th Street were drummed up by Councilman Brad Lander, who’s been a vocal advocate for keeping stables operating at the site.
“I’m thrilled about this next step in the city’s effort to buy Kensington Stables and preserve horseback riding in Prospect Park for many years to come,” Lander said. “This would be a great win for our community, and I’m very hopeful we can make it work.”
The sale isn’t a done deal just yet, but the lawyer for the Blankenship family told Brooklyn Paper that he’s “pretty confident” it’s going to happen.
The Blankenships are selling the stables to satisfy an outstanding debt on the property. On top of that, the 1930-built stables are in dire need of pricey maintenance. The barn was poised to hit the auction block in February, but an unnamed private buyer with an interest in purchasing the property to allegedly develop residential space on top of a new stable space, stopped that from happening.
Councilman Lander was against residential development at the site, saying that he wouldn’t back a zoning variance for the property for a plan that didn’t include horse stables on the site. It’s a win for everyone except the Blankenship family, monetarily speaking, who are taking a hit selling to the city. The Blankenships lawyer suspects the deal will bring in about $1 million less for the family than selling to a private buyer.