From the Daily News:
A push by Carroll Gardens preservationists to landmark more of the neighborhood has unleashed a backlash from some homeowners and merchants who don't want the city to regulate how their buildings must look.
The battle is already pitting oldtimers - many part of the neighborhood's dwindling number of Italian residents - against relative newcomers.
"I bought my house under the pretense that I can do what I want to it - inside and outside," said Butch Mule, 66, who grew up in the neighborhood and now owns a home on Degraw St.
Critics don't want the neighborhood's existing two-block historic district expanded because of the expense of adhering to historic guidelines. Replacing windows, staircases and front gates could cost thousands more, because the Landmarks Preservation Commission would require designs with a late 19th century appearance.
But advocates say landmarking is the best way to protect the oldtime charm of the brownstone neighborhood.
"The neighborhood has become so popular because of what it [looks like]," said architect John Hathaway, 52, who has lived in a house on Second St. for 30 years.
The debate over landmark status is part of the fight about over-development in Carroll Gardens. In October, the city adopted zoning rules limiting the size of new buildings in the neighborhood to five stories on most blocks.
Advocates for the landmark status say the zoning changes don't go far enough. "We don't want buildings to get funky additions on top and inappropriate modifications to the facade," said Hathaway.
Ask Sunnyside Gardens homeowners if they regret being landmarked.