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Tuesday
Mar172015

After 70 Years in Business, Prospect Gardens Pharmacy to Close Today

Prospect Gardens Pharmacy, the old-school pharmacy on the corner of Seventh Avenue and Union Street, will be closing today. The building was recently sold for the record price (for a mixed-use building the neighborhood) of $8.63 million, and "a big national retail tenant" is slated to take over the space, according to the Daily News.

The pharmacy originally opened in the 1940s as a branch of the now-defunct chain Whelan's, with all the bells and whistles you'd expect in an old-timey pharmacy: a soda counter, floor to ceiling built-in wooden shelving, glass cases, and a rolling wooden ladder. When Howard Baskind (who owned the building until its recent sale) purchased it in 1980 he gave it an unfortunate and inexpensive makeover, complete with wood paneling and the word "PRESCRIPTIONS" in huge letters (in an admittedly great 1970s typeface) across the back wall. It was dated but had its charms, and thankfully Baskind left the classic old DRUGS PRESCRIPTIONS sign (minus the neon, unfortunately) hanging out front.

The pharmacy remained popular largely due to the pharmacists themselves, who knew their customers by name (and could recognize their voices on the phone) and became neighborhood fixtures: George Berman was the primary pharmacist in the 1960s and Wayne Lippman was behind the counter from 1985 to 2012.

"Why shop at a place that makes you wait three hours for a prescription? I don't understand it," Lippman told me when I dropped by in 2011. "Here we fill it in five to ten minutes. That's how we maintain our clientele. A lot of the old timers aren't around anymore, but when younger folks come in they're always impressed by the fact that we actually care about them."

All outstanding prescriptions will be transferred to Rite-Aid.

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Reader Comments (24)

That's a bummer. I like old places like that.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterTheo's Dad

From Jeremiah Moss of Jeremiah's Vanishing New York - he recently wrote an op ed that was featured in the Daily News.

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/jeremiah-moss-nyc-love-disappearing-article-1.2140330

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterKimberly

"All outstanding prescriptions will be transferred to Rite-Aid"

Good luck with that. Want personalized service from a pharmacy? Transfer your prescription(s) to Palma, the last independent pharmacy on that stretch of Seventh Ave., where everybody knows your name and a high quality of service and professionalism is provided.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMarty Markowitz

Marty,

Uhhhh. Neergaard (which has been in business for 30 years longer than Prospect Gardens and in fact is the longest running business in Park Slope) is a block and half away on 7th and President.

There is also Park Place Pharmacy which has been open for 2 years now and it a nice independently owned pharmacy.

And The Modern Chemist at 1st Street and 7th Avenue. Hardly a lack of independent run pharmacies around here. There are tons on 5th Avenue as well not to mention Duane Reade and Kings.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterEd

We all love to see an old place go, but this place was a dump. The exterior looked as though it was painted by a 5 year old and they didn't keep up with new products. It was like walking back into the 70's and not in a good way.

Sorry, but you can't lament everything that closes. Some were good, some okay and some bad. This was not special and there are certainly other better places around like Neergaard.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterlisa

meant to say we all HATE to see an old place go....

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterlisa

More important than losing this business is finding out who this big national retailer is-

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJbob

Anne Taylor Loft.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterIna

I can't wait to hear what SlopeSteven has to say about the announcement today that Chipotle is opening at 7th Avenue and 1st in the old Met Foods Spot.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterChipotleintheSlope

you should change your URL to wheresparkslope.com. It looks so different now.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterEx-Sloper

ex-slope:

Yup, always different. It looks different now than it did 5 years ago, 10 years ago, 50 years ago and 100 years ago. That is the beauty of living in a dynamic city where things change. There are many places you can find in rural america if you enjoy places that stagnate.

The neighborhood is more alive than it's been in years, the schools teaming with more children than they can fit. Prospect Park was a dump 20 years ago and now it's one of the most beautiful urban parks in the country. All of the boarded up homes have been meticulously restored and are now taken care of by owners who actually love their historic details even though they could have bought a white box for less money.

Yes, some older stores are closing, mostly the ones that have not kept up with the new arrivals.

Park Slope, when it was built was the wealthiest zip code in America. Yes, not just NYC, but America. So things go, Park Slope is looking more as it did as it was intended, instead of the glory days as some of you seem to reminisce about of the 70's and 80's. That was not Park Slope, that was a city in total disrepair with many people fleeing as fast as they could to get out. That's all been reversed and I for one am thankful. I'll take a few chains if it means a healthy vibrant and safe place where people want to live.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterLiz

Park Slope is Park Slope because of the architecture, the green and the culture. Not because of some shabby Pharmacy painted pink.

If you have moved on from Park Slope, Ex-slope, any reason why you continue to read a highly specific neighborhood blog and comment on it? Just curious. Westchester not happening enough for ya?

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterRick

Ha, I just moved further out on the Q! I read this blog because Park Slope is very close to my heart and I only wish it the best.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterEx-Sloper

I think this is a sad development, but an inevitable development. I imagine old stores having old spirits, ghosts even. Very sad; I guess this is what happens when you're no longer 30, or even 40 years. old.

I loved the old sign of this pharmacy--any old pharmacy, actually.

Wondering if the J&R Appliance store down the way will be around in a few years. That J&R sign! I stare at it, and am taken back to the early 1970's (when said sign was likely already old).

Well, at least it's getting easier and easier to move out of the Slope for bigger digs...charm evaporatin...

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSlopeSteven

ChiptoleInTheSlope, the dick move of your moniker notwithstanding, that locations makes a lot more sense than the central-northern Slope space that was speculated upon a few weeks ago: it's closer Methodist Hospital, a large high school, and the kid population of the South Slope, and there's even a synergy with Prospect Park.

(Now, if only I hadn't discovered that I really don't love Chipotle--I'm kinda into a Paleo diet, and I keep quasi-kosher, so...oh well. They should do well down that way with the greater traffic...)

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSlopeSteven

PS: OK, I'll eat a little crow. This location is only a block further south than Tutta Pasta (per Google Maps), so it's only incrementally better situated.

March 17, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSlopeSteven

I'd been going to Prospect Rx for 30 years & liked it a lot. They'd bend the rules if you had run out of a scrip & needed an extra day or 2. I don't know what 'new products' they were missing but they had a lot of mundane stuff you might need in a pinch. The aesthetics might not have been great but I bet they were better than whatever comes w/ a new franchise. I just hope it's not another nail salon - 2 just opened on that block even though there're already 3 w/in easy walking distance!

March 21, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterAreKay

What I'm going to miss most about this place are the Christmas song bells. Wonder if they are for sale...

March 25, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSlopeSteven

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June 23, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterpsisoftwares

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August 27, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterWiki
December 2, 2016 | Registered CommenterAbdul Mufallah

Telah terjadi kesalahan

December 2, 2016 | Registered CommenterAbdul Mufallah

Maaf ada kesalahan

December 2, 2016 | Registered CommenterAbdul Mufallah

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