This is an archived article and the information in the article may be out of date. Please look at the history’s timestamp to see when it was last updated.
BROOKLYN – The Bedford-Stuyvesant and Bushwick border was a K2 zombie area last summer. Men and women addicted to synthetic marijuana collapsed in daze and dozens of people were hospitalized.
âYou’ll always see them standing right there,â said Donna Smith, a resident of the area. Still there – you can smell it and everything.
There has been a slight drop in K2 users in the area according to Diane Buggs, a woman who has lived in the neighborhood for 50 years. She thinks this is a positive sign for the changing neighborhood.
âNow it’s up and coming,â Buggs said.
Part of that is a new Starbucks serving cranberry scones and venti macchiatos. It will replace Fat Alberts, a long-running discount variety store that Buggs considered a staple in the community.
A Starbucks spokesperson told PIX11 that this location will be different. They have a community store like this in Queens, Baltimore, Chicago, and Long Beach. The store will hire locally, partner with local female and minority-owned suppliers and contractors, and work with a local non-profit organization to deliver an in-store skills training program to youth in Bedford-Stuyvesant who are not in school and are not employed.
Almost 20 percent of 16-24 year-olds in Bedford-Stuyvesant do not attend school and are unemployed, according to data from Measure of America.
âOur hope is that the employment opportunities and training resources offered here, in a specially designed classroom space within the store, will help reconnect young people and put them on the path to success,â said one. Starbucks spokesperson.
While some area residents are enthusiastic, not everyone is happy to see the neighborhood change.
Colon FranÃ§ois does not want to see a store like Fat Alberts, known for its affordable price, disappear.
âAdd a Starbucks – it’s $ 5 for a cup of coffee,â he said. “I can’t afford a cup of coffee.”
Suggest a correction