Sugar Hill, Rich in Culture, and Affordable | NY Times

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(Photo: Alan Chin | NY Times )

(Photo: Alan Chin | NY Times )

The section of Upper Manhattan known as Sugar Hill, poised on a bluff overlooking the Harlem Plain and distinguished by graceful rowhouses and elegant apartment buildings, achieved renown in the 1930s and 1940s, when it was home to prominent African-American professionals, political leaders, artists, musicians and writers. The song “Take the ‘A’ Train,” written by Billy Strayhorn and popularized by Duke Ellington, commemorated the neighborhood, where both lived. Nowadays, though, some newcomers say they had not heard the name Sugar Hill before they arrived.

“I just thought of the area as Harlem,” said Heva Loriston, a Haitian-American resident who does administrative work at Columbia University and who recently moved to the neighborhood with her family. “We were looking for something reasonably priced, and we found it in the area — but now we plan on staying there.”

Ms. Loriston and her husband bought the three-bedroom apartment where they live with their three daughters last June for $130,000. The apartment is a Housing Development Fund Corporation co-op, which carries income restrictions, and also needed work, she said.

Read more: Sugar Hill, Rich in Culture, and Affordable – NYTimes.com.

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