CARROLL GARDENS — Bright lights shining from a new bank on Court Street have turned Carroll Gardens into Times Square, some locals say.
Investors Bank, which has not yet opened at 431 Court St., turned on its white lights behind a green sign and under an awning earlier this week.
“It looked like a gas station lit up,” said Lisa Kentgen, who lives across the street from the bank. “It’s horrifying.”
Kentgen, a doctor, has received roughly 60 signatures on a petition she started to dim the lights and remove the bright green awning that extends onto the sidewalk at the bank.
“We are requesting this in the spirit of Investors Bank’s willingness to become a part of the neighborhood instead of standing out in a way that is unattractive and disruptive to its neighbors,” the petition reads, posted on the neighborhood blog Pardon Me for Asking, along with Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn, which first reported the issue.
While Investors Bank did not immediately respond to requests for comment, Joe Valente, a corporate services manager at Investors Bank, contacted Kentgen this week, following the blog reports and phone calls from concerned residents, she said.
The lights have since been turned off and Valente assured her that they would find a permanent solution, said Kentgen, who also requested that they remove the bright green awning.
And while the bank’s outdoor lights have been turned off, they still burn brightly inside the bank, she said.
“I think it looks like Times Square,” Kentgen said. “It’s so bright.”
Karen Levinson lives a block from the new bank and was also shocked by the stark white lighting.
“It just changed the whole vibe of the street and the neighborhood when they turned on the lights,” she said.
Once home to Good Food, an Italian deli that had occupied the space for 34 years and closed in April, Investors Bank now sits alongside Vinny’s Pizza, Caputo’s Fine Foods and other remnants of Carroll Gardens’ history.
“That particular block has lost a lot of charm now,” said Levinson, 55, who has lived in the neighborhood for about 30 years and added 20 signatures to the petition.
Levinson and Kentgen both credited the bank for their swift action in turning off the lights but they, and other locals, would like to see a long-term change to the lighting system and the awning, they said.
They would like the bank to blend in with the neighborhood in keeping with its “Old World vibe.”
“It’s like having a McDonald’s in the middle of the block that’s lit up,” said Levinson.