kids encyclopedia robot

Flatlands, Brooklyn facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Neighborhood of Brooklyn
Jans Martense Schenck house, Flatlands, built 1675, formerly at Avenue U and East 63rd Street
Jans Martense Schenck house, Flatlands, built 1675, formerly at Avenue U and East 63rd Street
Country  United States
State  New York
City New York City
Borough Brooklyn
Community District Brooklyn 18
 • Total 2.2800 sq mi (5.9053 km2)
 • Total 64,762
 • Density 28,403.8/sq mi (10,966.76/km2)
 • Black 66.3%
 • White 18.2
 • Hispanic 8.9
 • Asian 4.0
 • Other 2.6
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP Code
Area codes 718, 347, 929, and 917

Flatlands is a neighborhood in the southeast part of the borough of Brooklyn in New York City. The current neighborhood borders are roughly defined by the Bay Ridge Branch to the north, Avenue U to the south, Ralph Avenue to the east, and Flatbush Avenue to the southwest.

Originally an independent town, Flatlands became part of the City of Brooklyn in 1896.

Flatlands is part of Brooklyn Community District 18, and its primary ZIP Code is 11234. It is patrolled by the 63rd Precinct of the New York City Police Department. Politically it is represented by the New York City Council's 45th and 46th Districts.


The neighborhood borders are roughly defined by Avenue H to the north, Avenue U to the south, Ralph Avenue to the east, Flatbush Avenue to the southwest and Nostrand Avenue to the northwest. Originally inhabited by the Lenape Native Americans and settled in 1623 by Francophone Walloons, Flatlands was given the right to local rule in 1661 by Peter Stuyvesant as one of the five Dutch Towns on Long Island.

Prior to English rule, Flatlands was known as Nieuw Amersfoort – named after the Dutch city of Amersfoort – and was established as a farming community when, in 1636, Andries Hudde and Wolphert Gerretse bought 15,000 acres of land centered on what is now the intersection of Kings Highway and Flatbush Avenue. Crops typically grown in the area were beans, corn, marsh hay, squash, potato bean and tobacco. Oysters and clams were also farmed and harvested from Jamaica Bay, surrounding marshes and basins. The land-controlling families of Nieuw Amersfoort also kept black slaves to work their farms until the state declared emancipation of all slaves in 1827, after which black laborers took up farming jobs, many times on the farms they worked on as slaves.

Historic homes dated to the 18th century include the Stoothoff-Baxter-Kouwenhaven House and Joost Van Nuyse House. Other historic structures are the Hendrick I. Lott House (East 36th Street between Fillmore Ave and Ave. S, built around 1720), which was a stop on the Underground Railroad, and the Flatlands Dutch Reformed Church.

The town’s growth and development came late because of a lack of a transit system or set of roads connecting it with other parts of Brooklyn. The Junction, at Flatbush Avenue and Nostrand Avenue later replaced the town center, and the 2 and ​5 train at Flatbush Avenue station under the Junction made it easier to get to and from Flatlands.

Flatlands was annexed by the city of Brooklyn in 1896.


Based on data from the 2010 United States Census, the population of Flatlands was 64,762, a decrease of 1,964 (2.9%) from the 66,726 counted in 2000. Covering an area of 1,249.32 acres (505.58 ha), the neighborhood had a population density of 51.8 inhabitants per acre (33,200/sq mi; 12,800/km2).

The racial makeup of the neighborhood was 18.2% (11,793) White, 66.3% (42,935) African American, 0.2% (158) Native American, 4.0% (2,577) Asian, 0.0% (16) Pacific Islander, 0.5% (334) from other races, and 1.8% (1,196) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.9% (5,753) of the population.

The entirety of Community District 18, which comprises Canarsie and Flatlands, had 165,543 inhabitants as of NYC Health's 2018 Community Health Profile, with an average life expectancy of 82.0 years. This is slightly higher than the median life expectancy of 81.2 for all New York City neighborhoods. Most inhabitants are middle-aged adults and youth: 25% are between the ages of 0–17, 29% between 25 and 44, and 24% between 45 and 64. The ratio of college-aged and elderly residents was lower, at 9% and 13% respectively.

As of 2016, the median household income in Community District 18 was $76,647. In 2018, an estimated 15% of Community District 18 residents lived in poverty, compared to 21% in all of Brooklyn and 20% in all of New York City. One in eleven residents (9%) were unemployed, compared to 9% in the rest of both Brooklyn and New York City. Rent burden, or the percentage of residents who have difficulty paying their rent, is 50% in Community District 18, lower than the citywide and boroughwide rates of 52% and 51% respectively. Based on this calculation, as of 2018, Community District 18 is considered to be high-income relative to the rest of the city and not gentrifying.

The 2020 census data from New York City Department of City Planning showed that there were 40,000+ Black residents, the White and Hispanic populations were each between 5,000 to 9,999 residents, and the Asian residents were less than 5000.


No New York City Subway service runs into Flatlands. Many residents live within walking distance of the IRT Nostrand Avenue Line (2 and ​5 train), however, which terminates at the junction of Flatbush and Nostrand Avenues; others use buses to get to the BMT Brighton Line (B and ​Q train) or the BMT Canarsie Line (L train). Local and express buses are also used as a means of travel in and around the area. As of August 2019, the buses that serve Flatlands are the B2, B6, B7, B9, B41, B44, B44 SBS, B46, B46 SBS, B47, B82, B82 SBS, B100, B103, BM1, BM2, Q35.


Flatlands Av East 22 - PS 207 Annex
PS 207 Annex

Community District 22 generally has a similar ratio of college-educated residents to the rest of the city as of 2018. Though 40% of residents age 25 and older have a college education or higher, 13% have less than a high school education and 48% are high school graduates or have some college education. By contrast, 40% of Brooklynites and 38% of city residents have a college education or higher.

Community District 22's rate of elementary school student absenteeism is slightly lower than the rest of New York City.


Flatlands contains the following public elementary schools that serve grades PK-5 unless otherwise indicated:

  • PS 119 Amersfort
  • PS 203 Floyd Bennett
  • PS 251 Paerdegat
  • PS 326 (grades PK-2)

The following schools are located nearby:

  • PS 207 Elizabeth G Leary (grades PK-8), in Marine Park
  • PS 222 Katherine R Snyder (grades PK-5), in Marine Park
  • PS 236 Mill Basin (grades PK-5), in Mill Basin
  • PS 312 Bergen Beach (grades PK-5), in Bergen Beach
  • JHS 78 Roy H Mann (grades 6–8), in Bergen Beach
  • South Shore High School Education Complex
  • S.J. Tilden High school Education CampuS
  • Brooklyn Theatre Arts High School (grades 9–12), in Canarsie


BPL Flatlands Av P jeh
Brooklyn Public Library, Flatlands branch

The Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) has two branches in Flatlands. The Flatlands branch is located at 2065 Flatbush Avenue near Avenue P. It was opened in a former Prudential Savings Bank branch in 1949, and moved to its current 6,000-square-foot (560 m2) space in 1955.

The Paerdegat branch is located at 850 East 59th Street near Paerdegat Avenue South. It opened in 1950 and moved to its current building in 1959.

Notable residents

See also (related category): People from Flatlands, Brooklyn
  • Neil Bogart (1943-1982), founder of Casablanca Records, was raised in the Glenwood Houses project in Flatlands
  • Abner Louima (born 1966), Haitian immigrant and father, brutally assaulted by NYPD
  • Chris Mullin (born 1963), former NBA basketball player, was born and raised in Flatlands.
  • Steven Van Voorhees (1600-1684), magistrate, first Voorhees in America
  • Wolfert Gerritse Van Couwenhoven (1579-1662), New Netherland colonist and the original patentee.

Images for kids

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Flatlands (Brooklyn) para niños

kids search engine
Flatlands, Brooklyn Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.