Try the diner food, shop local and please don’t make the traffic any worse.
That’s what Hillary Clinton’s new Brooklyn neighbors had to say on Friday, as news broke the presumptive presidential candidate had leased campaign headquarters at 1 Pierrepont Plaza in the Brooklyn Heights neighborhood.
In interviews with TIME, locals were mostly pleased that the Empire State’s political superstar had picked their neighborhood to spearhead her run for president, though they were wary about the prospect of more cars and people on the already-bustling commercial and residential strip.
“We always love celebrities in this neighborhood, but to me, the traffic is going to be so bad,” said Ting Ko, 38, a stay-at-home mom who lives nearby and supports Clinton’s run. “I would tell her to go to local diners. Grand Canyon, Park Plaza.”
Emerson Kokol, 23, a financial analyst who lives in the neighborhood, wasn’t concerned about the influx of security and traffic that Clinton’s campaign could bring. “It’ll definitely be more crowded,” he said, but he added that the subways are already “packed anyway, so what’s another 50 people, 100 people?”
Kokol recommended that the campaign staff try the nearby Heights Cafe, a cozy New American spot, and Teresa’s Restaurant, which serves Polish food.
One of Clinton’s biggest fans in Brooklyn Heights on Friday was Estela Johannesen, an owner of James Weir Floral, just a block from Clinton’s new headquarters.
“We all hope for better business,” said Johannesen, 50, who had heard the news from a customer that morning. “It would be great to have a woman run for president of the United States and it would be my pleasure to be around that campaign.”
At Azzuro, a dry cleaning and shoe repair shop, owner Edward Shamalov, 48, was already thinking ahead and said he’d put up posters for Clinton’s campaign in his shop if she put posters for his business in her office. “Why not?” he said. “She’s a tough lady, and we need that kind.”
But not everyone will welcome Clinton with open arms.
Philip Stevenson, 39, an art dealer and local resident, said he’d rather see Elizabeth Warren run for president instead of Clinton, whom he described as “opportunistic.” He predicted the headquarters would wreak havoc on the neighborhood. “It means more inconvenience, more traffic, more hassle, but she doesn’t care,” he said. “You can write that I find her loathsome.”
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