Dyker Heights is a community comprised of predominantly one and two family homes. It is located at the southwestern tip of the borough. The neighborhood stretches along Gravesend Bay from Seventh to 14th Avenues and from the Belt Parkway to 65th Street.
From the rows of attached homes that line 86th Street and many of the Avenues, to the mansions and smaller one and two family homes, Dyker Heights is truly a residential community. Dyker Beach Park is a 242 acre series of parks that sits south of 86th Street and offers a championship golf course, a junior golf center, courts, and fields for tennis, bocce, handball, baseball and quiet walking paths.
It is well-known at Christmastime. Many homes light up with elaborate lawn displays.
It was originally part of the town of New Utrecht. The land was initially purchased by Anthony Jansen van Salee in 1643 and was used as farmland. Historians differ on how the neighborhood got its name. Some contend it stems from the dikes used to drain the marshland near the bay. Others contend it was named after members of the Dyke family which developed the land in the early 1700s.
By the start of the 19th century, it was still mostly farmland which was settled by a spattering of Scandinavian fisherman from Bay Ridge and Sunset Park. Once the subways were built under 4th Avenue, and above New Utrecht Avenue, Irish Americans and Italians began to settle in their new homes. The neighborhood was developed as a wealthy enclave around the turn of the century.
The Dyker Heights Civic Association was founded in 1928. Its motto is Democracy In Action and they continue to meet each month on the second Tuesday at Saint Phillips Episcopal Church located at 1072 80th Street.
In June, 2007, the century old mansion on 84th Street between 11th and 12th Avenue known as the Saitta House earned a place on the National Register of Historic Places. The Saitta House named after original owners Simone and Beatrice Saitta was completed in 1899 by architect John J. Petit. Christian Zaino, founder and president of the Dyker Heights Historical Society made the announcement at the June Meeting of the Dyker Heights Civic Association.
Excerpts from Daily News – September 7, 2001 – “Real Estate Scene”