From the far West Side to the Lower East Side to Downtown, scaffolds are being raised and new residences are being built all over Manhattan. Just a few years ago, new construction of these types would have been scoffed at. Now the times they are a-changin,’ to quote Bob Dylan.
“There are a number of very active developers in New York today developing condominium properties,” says Stephen Kliegerman, President of Halstead Property Development Marketing in Manhattan. “The difference between the developers of today and those who developed pre-2008 is that now most of the developments are being done by major developers rather than first-timers – developers like L&M, Savanna, SJP Properties, Adam American, Toll Brothers, Related, Extell, and Tishman are but a few of the top developers active in today’s market.”
According to Gordon Hoppe, Executive Vice President of Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group, also in Manhattan, there will be approximately 4,000 to 5,000 new residential units added to the Manhattan market in the coming year or so.
“2018 will be an exciting year for new development as major developments across several neighborhoods come to market,” notes Hoppe. “Developers have been cautious about flooding the market with new inventory and are making measured decisions about exactly when to bring their product to market.”
The majority of new development and construction generally happens below 34th Street, explains Hoppe. This is due, in part, to the many prime residential neighborhoods to choose from in this area of Manhattan.
“For all of 2017, we expect around 966 new development units to be introduced downtown, over 40 percent of the Manhattan introductions for the year,” says Hoppe, who adds that the West Side of Manhattan also realized a development addition in 2017 with Waterline Square.
“This 263-residence, three-tower mega development is reshaping the neighborhood with incredible architecture by Richard Meier, Rafael Viñoly, and Kohn Pedersen Fox,” Hoppe says. “Overlooking the Hudson River, Waterline Square is set realize one of the most robust amenity offerings in the history of New York.” Amenities include over 100,000 square feet of sports, leisure and lifestyle amenities and a new 2.6-acre park. “Not to mention a dining and food hall experience by world-renowned Cipriani,” adds Hoppe.
While residential construction is on the upswing, the majority of new development projects are condominiums opposed to co-ops, explains Kliegerman. This is due, he says, because condominiums are a more “sought-after form of ownership” due to the “flexibility in the rules” that govern condo ownership.
One recent and notable exception is 100 Barrow, a co-op building located next to the historic Church of St. Luke in the Fields in Greenwich Village. The 12-story building features 33 apartments with studios to four-bedroom units.
“Historically foreign buyers have not embraced co-ops for numerous reasons, including the uniqueness of co-ops to New York City, which is an unfamiliar form of ownership for most foreigners,” he says. “Co-ops are not built often, but some new co-ops have been built recently due to restrictions on how a property can be titled if built upon a land lease. Land leases, unless with the city, forced that a co-op not a condo be built as you cannot have a ‘fee simple’ property built upon land that is leased.”
Projects of Note
In Hoppe’s view, 2017 and 2018 is an “exciting time” in the new development market as several buildings of note coming to completion. These include 20 East End Avenue, the Robert A.M. Stern-designed condominium on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, which recently began closings. The building features 43 two-to-six-bedroom condos, including three duplex townhomes and two penthouses.
“It is a testament to Stern’s design and the execution of the developer, Corigin Real Estate Group, that the final product is so stunning,” says Hoppe. “With beautiful model residences to show, buyers are responding to 20 East End Avenue’s top-of-the-line craftsmanship.”
High-end design is trending with Hoppe also pointing to 520 West 28th Street by architect Zaha Hadid, who has introduced a “new level of architecture” to the High Line and New York City. The often ogled building has 39 condo units, some of which feature private vestibules and entrances.
“The recently opened amenity suite is a signature of Hadid’s design and presents a fully considered lifestyle,” says Hoppe. “The 75-foot sky-lit pool, fitness center, private IMAX theater, and automated parking are just few of the amenities residents enjoy within this new architectural icon.”
The long-awaited completion of the first phase of the Second Avenue Subway, which serves three stations on the Upper East Side, has had an “amazing impact” on the Upper East Side East of Third Avenue, Kliegerman says.
“A new condominium, the Vitre, located at 302 West 96th Street, is currently under construction and now seeing robust sales due to the convenience of the new subway line,” he says. The 21-story building featuring 48 units will be completed in 2018. Other anticipated luxury condo projects include 180 East 88th Street, which will feature 48 residences and Citizen360 at 360 East 89th Street that will offer 84 one-to-four-bedroom residences
“These are but a few other examples of how this subway line has been beneficial to New York City development,” says Kliegerman.
Hudson Yards and the High Line
If one area of Manhattan has changed over recent years, most people would point to the West Side. Hoppe agrees, saying it’s difficult not to “overstate the transformation” of these neighborhoods abutting the Hudson River. And with the Hudson Yards master plan, which includes 4,000 residences, a new hotel, and retail space featuring more than 100 luxury and specialty shops, this market is poised for even more change.
“Looking forward, change will only accelerate with the Hudson Yards master plan, including the first condominium tower at Fifteen Hudson Yards,” says Hoppe. “Related Companies has assembled an incredible cast of culinary partners to bring an array of restaurant offerings to the area — from Thomas Keller to David Chang, Hudson Yards is set to be a global dining destination.”
Hoppe adds that further downtown, developments, such as 70 Vestry, will “redefine waterfront living” on Manhattan’s “west coast.” Slated for completion in 2018, the 14-story residential condominium building located in the northern section of Tribeca will offer 46 apartments and is being built by the Related Companies. “Poised to shatter pricing records when closings begin next year, 70 Vestry has shown that high design, water views, and thoughtful amenities resonate with buyers at the highest price points,” says Hoppe.
If there is one project that helped to redefine Chelsea north of 23rd Street, Kliegerman points to the High Line elevated park and social space. He says it has had a “huge impact on the success” of the submarket. It is the momentum from the High Line that has given rise to Hudson Yards, he adds. These projects will continue to serve as a foundation, or building blocks, for the future of this area of Manhattan.
“Before the redevelopment of the High Line, Chelsea’s Northern boundary was 23rd Street; now it goes all the way up to 30th Street, and some of the most successful and highly-priced projects in the area fall on or within a block of the High Line,” says Kliegerman. “Hudson Yards is having a similar impact on the West 30s, and will continue to do so.”
Over the last seven years, the Downtown market has realized the most significant construction. The redevelopment of the World Trade Center sites and the development of Brookfield Place were the leading projects. The latter is a towering waterfront office complex that features shopping, dining, ice-skating and the capacity to host special events throughout the year.
“These projects have had a positive impact on new development Downtown on many levels,” says Kliegerman. “Projects like the Four Seasons Residences at 30 Park Place, 111 Murray, and 19 Park Place are but a few new developments that have benefited from the redevelopment of the area.”
Hoppe adds that real estate developer Silverstein Properties has made an “incredible commitment” to the area around the World Trade Center. He also notes the completion of 82-story 30 Park Place that features 157 “luxury” units. Four Seasons (30 Park Place) Private Residences New York is a major celebratory milestone for Downtown Manhattan. Residents have access to exclusive amenities and the white glove service of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. “With new shops and restaurants, schools and green spaces, Downtown has become the most desired and fastest growing residential area in Manhattan,” says Hoppe. “With the arrival of Saks Fifth Avenue, Eataly, and the shops at Brookfield Place, the neighborhood supports the demands of a broad audience of luxury buyers. It is drawing people from across the city and across the globe who now consider it a first-choice destination.”
W.B. King is a freelance writer and frequent contributor to The Cooperator.