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City Living: Woodlawn
Wedged between 1,186-acre Van Cortlandt Park and Woodlawn Cemetery, this middle-class Bronx neighborhood seems to be lost in a time capsule.
Woodlawn, located in the north Bronx, is a village within the city; where generation after generation grow up in pastoral row houses, are members of a 103-year-old church, and start their days greeting neighbors by name.
“It’s a place where people live close enough to get to know each other,” Community Board 12 chairman and 23-year Woodlawn resident Father Richard Gorman said. “The neighborhood spirit is filled with a sense of community.”
It’s also easily accessible via the Metro-North, the Bronx River Parkway and the Major Deegan Expressway. Affordability, safety and a quiet environment make Woodlawn a desireable place to raise a family, residents stopped along the main commercial district on Katonah Avenue said.
In its early days, the Irish population in Woodlawn was so large that it was once nicknamed “Irishtown,” according to nycparks.org.
Many of the original Woodlawn residents worked as tunnel diggers and were known affectionately as “sandhogs.”
According to the site sandhogs147.org, they worked on the Catskill Water Tunnel System, helping to build the Croton Reservoir and Aqueducts, which opened in 1842.
They also worked on the Brooklyn Bridge and the Lincoln and Holland Tunnels.
Nowadays, families stay in the area for three and four generations because property is cheaper here than in other parts of the city and neighboring Yonkers.
The average recent selling price of a one-family home in Woodlawn is $361,000, according to a local real estate office.
But there are also several low-rise rental buildings where studio apartments can rent for about $900 a month.
NEED TO KNOW
Woodlawn, also called Woodlawn Heights, is located in the northern Bronx. To the north it’s bordered just below McLean Avenue, to the east Bronx River Road, to the south East 233rd Street and to the west Van Cortlandt Park East. More »
4 train to Woodlawn; 2 and 5 trains stop nearby at 233rd Street and Nereid Avenue; Metro North to Woodlawn; Buses: Bx 16, Bx 31, Bx 34, BxM4 More »
NYPL Woodlawn Heights, 4355 Katonah Ave. 718-519-9627 More »
USPS 4364 Katonah Ave. 718-324-3838 More »
Woodlawn is patrolled by the 47th Precinct at 4111 Laconia Ave. As of until Oct. 27, 2013, there were five murders reported by the precinct, down down from 14 in the year to date in 2012. However, there were 31 rapes reported as of Oct. 27, 2013, up from 26 in the year to date in 2012. There was a 40% drop in overall crime reported by the precinct between 1998 and 2012. More »
Mary’s Celtic Kitchen
People say this popular mostly take-out spot serves the best Sheperd’s Pie in town and its sausage mash and beans will tickle the luck of the Irish in you.
Patrizia’s Of Woodlawn
It’s not just their gluten-free pizza that makes them unique, try them on Mondays for Lobster and Sangria Night from 5 to 8 p.m.
Sean’s Quality Deli
They offer a “full line of Irish Products” from Irish newspapers to Irish sausages.
Katonah Hardware & Houseware
This hardware store is small in size but big on service. They carry just about everything you need to fix up that old house this winter.
With live local bands, this is the place to be every Friday night, but don’t forget Football Sundays where you’ll be surrounded by three eight-foot projectors and lots of Guinness.
The Tombstone Saloon
This Western-themed saloon has Whiskey Wednesdays and two-for-one Ladies Night on Thursdays. House rules: cash only.
Woodlawn Arts and Music House
This school teaches Irish music to preschoolers, adults and seniors. Learn how to play the piano, traditional violin or fiddle.
Van Cortlandt Park
This gorgeous park is an “outdoorsy-type’s” paradise.