Sometimes real estate is just darn weird: City records filed last week show that the building at 385 Union Avenue, in Williamsburg, sold for $20 million. The new development, which is a rental, has some units available, according to StreetEasy. What’s odd about this deal is that the city deed shows the property selling as “INDUSTRIAL BUILDING,” and a check of Department of Buildings records doesn’t show a certificate of occupancy for residential use. Is this because city records are not up to date, or is something else going on here? Who knows.
385 Union Avenue 25% Rented [Brownstoner] GMAP
The vacant lot at 538 Washington Avenue in Clinton Hill, close to the corner of Fulton, has found a buyer. Here’s the word on the deal from brokerage TerraCRG, which handled the transaction: “TerraCRG, Brooklyn’s commercial brokerage and advisory firm announced today the sale of the development site at 538 Washington Avenue in Clinton Hill. The approx. 25 ft x 129 ft vacant lot is located on Washington Avenue between Fulton Street and Atlantic Avenue and has a mixed zoning of C2-4/R6B/R7A. The development site has approved plans for a five story, eight unit residential building with plans by Scarano Architects. The footing on the site was installed to qualify for 421-A tax abatement. The plans call for an approx. 9,767 Sq. Ft. building (12,943 Sq. Ft. including the basement) with 1 studio, 3 one bedrooms, 2 two bedrooms and 2 three bedroom apartments, all with outdoor space. The property was sold for $860,000 or $88 per buildable Sq. Ft. (based on the approved plans Sq. Ft.) to a developer who plans to continue the project. TerraCRG represented both the seller and buyer in the transaction.” It’s always good news to hear that a vacant lot will soon be home to a building. GMAP
In a couple of weeks, a converted Park Slope building at 397 First Street, close to the corner of Sixth Avenue, will launch condo sales. While the building is still very much under gut renovation, it will have eight units: Seven two-bedrooms and one garden duplex. The asking prices will range from $829,000 to $1,279,000. Pros: A lot of historical details are being preserved, and it is zoned for P.S. 321. Meanwhile, updates to the kitchen and new security systems are being put into place. There’s also going to be a common space for bikes and strollers. The developers are East River Partners LLC, and Corcoran is handling the sales and marketing. We had the rare opportunity to witness the gut renovation in progress late last week; click through for some photos.
397 First Street GMAP (more…)
As anyone who reads Brownstoner regularly knows, the very-long held plans for the transformation of Downtown Brooklyn are in the midst of being realized, and perhaps nothing short of historic for future students of urban history. This weekend, the New York Times took a look at how stuff is changing in the area. This is how the article ends:
That said, however, other residents say the designation may reflect a growing awareness of Downtown as special and worth preserving from the next crush of development. For proof of people’s newfound attachment to the place, look no farther than the sidewalks. Years ago they were empty on Saturdays and Sundays, after the courts adjourned. But the shoppers, tourists and bicyclists now punctuating them “give the area a bit more life on weekends,” said Serafin Piñol-Roma, who moved here in 2005. In 2005, he bought a one-bedroom in Concord Village, a multibuilding co-op with more than 1,000 units. Last year he traded up to a two-bedroom, for which he paid $444,000. An instructor of cell biology at City College in Upper Manhattan, he used to keep to Manhattan for entertainment as well. But he has recently embraced Brooklyn. “It took a little time to cut the umbilical cord,” was how he phrased it.
Downtown Brooklyn is a neighborhood in its own right now, is the point. The questions are: Where are the schools and groceries?
To the Heights and the Slope, Add ‘Downtown’ [NY Times]
Photo by tracktwentynine
On Friday news dropped that the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation will invest $46 million to build a green manufacturing center in the Navy Yard, primarily in the massive glass-shingled Building 128 just inside the Clermont entrance. Job creation is being stressed as a certainty. Here are the full details from the press release:
Crye Precision – a premier designer and manufacturer of body armor and apparel for the U.S. military as well as federal and state law enforcement agencies – which was awarded $1 million through the New York State Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) process, has agreed to become one of two lead tenants at the new Green Manufacturing Center. Crye currently operates in four separate spaces at the Navy Yard, with 110 employees, and will now lease 80,000 square feet, consolidating multiple sites into one central location. Crye decided to expand in the Navy Yard after considering numerous options for consolidation and expansion, including New Jersey. The company’s expansion into the Green Manufacturing Center will create 100 new jobs over the next five years. Crye also has several commercial product lines under development; one uses locally recycled materials that are converted into fabrics. Crye Precision Executive Director Caleb Crye, said, “The Navy Yard has been exactly what our business needed to grow and we are thrilled that our future will remain here. We started here a decade ago with 4,500 square feet, today we’re up to 45,000 square feet with more than 100 employees and when the new facility is complete we’ll have a more efficient operation with room to grow and add at least 100 new jobs.” A second anchor tenant, Macro Sea, will lease more than 50,000 square feet for New Lab, a cutting-edge facility that will promote design and manufacturing innovation using the latest in environmentally-conscious processes and machinery. Through traditional tenancies and co-working spaces, New Lab will encourage the collaboration between design and fabrication by hosting a dynamic mix of designers, digital manufacturers, architects, graduate research facilities, and others in a hive of sustainable design and innovation.
As for the time line? “Major construction begins this summer and will take approximately 18 months to complete.” State and city subsidies will help the project come to fruition.
Rendering credit: Macro Sea
Here’s a shot of our electeds celebrating the public opening of the new Brooklyn Botanic Garden Visitors Center last week.
Leonard Cohen is scheduled to play the Barclays Center on December 20th. The facade of the arena is being put into place at a fast clip. Click through for a couple more photos. –By Evan Bleier (more…)
Perhaps looking to fill the void that was created when the KFC on 4th Avenue closed in the fall so that it could be converted into a McDonalds, an awesome sign advertising “Crispy Mr. Chicken” has been on the front of 52 4th Avenue for more than a month now. The location is almost directly across the street from the former KFC and possible future McDonalds. Unfortunately for those looking to get their chicken fix, the work inside appears to be progressing slowly and there are no indications that the restaurant will be opening anytime soon. However, all hope is not lost: According to Department of Buildings records, there was a fried chicken biz operating in the same location from 1994 until 2010, before it was converted into a deli. Now that the deli’s gone, the chicken is free to range in all its glory. –By Evan Bleier
Blight at 4th Avenue Fast-Food Building [Brownstoner] GMAP
Park Slope might not be getting a Hooters anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean that the area isn’t going to be filling up with other new businesses. One such business, Die Koelner Bierhalle, is moving closer to opening its doors. Construction is still being done on the building’s interior, but the facade of the German-style beer hall is intact and looking just about ready for business. As previously reported on Brownstoner, the bar will have 30 German draft beers and will be run by the former manager of Der Schwarze Kölner in nearby Fort Greene. Located at 84 St. Marks Place, near the corner of 4th Avenue, the beer hall will offer bar-goers an alternative to nearby watering holes like the Cherry Tree and Pacific Standard. The bar’s website reports that it will be opening in Spring 2012, which means you should be able to say “Prost!” there sooner rather than later. –By Evan Bleier Update: Correct spelling of business name is now in place.
Beer Hall Opening in the North Slope [Brownstoner] GMAP
Open House Picks: 11/18/2011 [Brownstoner]
Clip from show above. Via the New York Observer: “From an official Girls casting notice posted to Backstage.com, we now know what ‘hipster’ typecasting looks like: Seeking—Hipster Types: male and female, 18-30s, all ethnicities, all types, specifically seeking people with tattoos, piercings, colored hair, and unique looks. Young Adult (ages 18-29), Thirties (ages 30-39). Caucasian/White, African-American/Black, Latin/Hispanic/South American, Asian, Native American, European, Middle Eastern, Indian/South Asian, Other.” Meanwhile, New York Shitty notes the following: “Truth be told, I really hate going after low-hanging fruit like such as this— but ‘Europeans’?!? I just about shot Zywiec out of my nose reading that corker. Perhaps ‘Girls’ will spot a few when they film in ‘Little Poland’ tomorrow? That’s right, Greenpointers. Tomorrow. May 18th, 2012.”
Attention Greenpointers! [NYS]
The Real TV Stars of Greenpoint: HBO’s Girls Seeking Real-Life ‘Hipster Types’ for Casting [NYO]
Via BrooklynSpoke we learn that on-street bike parking has been added outside of Gorilla Coffee on 5th Avenue in Park Slope. The blog’s commentary: “This morning, on-street bike parking was installed on 5th Avenue and Park Place, right in front of Gorilla Coffee. It’s only the third bike corral in the city and even though it was only completed within the last hour or so of this posting, it’s already seeing some action as shown in the photo above. …Two planters (seen on the truck prior to installation) will protect the bikes and racks from cars. Bikes on the sidewalk (mine is on the right) will soon be parked on the street, leaving more room for pedestrians.”
If You Build It, They Will Park [BrooklynSpoke]
Photo by Gorilla Coffee via BrooklynSpoke
Yesterday morning DNAinfo reported that the section of the mural surrounding the development site on Eastern Parkway and Franklin Avenue was in the process of being taken down. The photo above shows what the Eastern Parkway section of the site looked like as of around 2:30 p.m. yesterday. The mural was supposed to come down starting Tuesday, but that did not happen. The latest rendering for the 62-unit project, which was recently purchased by new investors and may see the beginning of construction in earnest sometime soon, can be seen here, though it’s possible that it is out of date. The section of the mural on the Franklin Avenue side of the site is still intact. While some in the community no doubt feel sad about the mural being removed, it is terribly exciting that a long-stalled hole in the ground will one day—hopefully sooner rather than later—be the site of new construction in which families can live.
Weeks After $8.2 Million Sale, Franklin Avenue Bob Marley Mural Comes Down [DNAinfo]
Mural to Make Way for Building on Franklin Ave? [Brownstoner]
The Latest Look for the Big Eastern Pkwy/Franklin Ave Site [Brownstoner] GMAP
Big Lot at Eastern Pkwy/Franklin Finally Sells for $8M [Brownstoner]
Temporary ‘Photoville’ Village Coming To BBP Pier 3 This Summer [BHB]
More Building Brooklyn Award Winners [Eagle]
From Philly, With Love: The Divine Lorraine [AVFTTF]
Jay And Lloyd’s: Baby Potato Pancakes [SB]
Future Brooklyn: The Dadvorcé Mancave [The Awl]
Photo by 12th Street David
What follows is our latest dispatch from a person who works in Brooklyn commercial real estate:
Tech tenants are the torrid topic today. Our BK Tech Triangle includes two areas almost fully leased, the Navy Yard and Dumbo, leaving downtown Brooklyn to take the heat. Recent DTB successes include NYU’s buyout of 370 Jay Street and the Makerbot lease at One MetroTech. Forest City Ratner making a strong effort to recruit more of these tenants, on the heels of the huge NYU-Poly deal on campus, and the City’s Department of Information and Technology lease last year.
Court and Montague Streets are not yet favored by most tech and creative tenants, and many of the buildings and landlords are unprepared for and ill-adapted to these tenants. Only now are some buildings, which sport the small offices favored by the tech and creative sector, getting wired up with FiOS and Time Warner cable. Copper is for pennies. Or used to be. Certainly some owners are trying, such as 32 Court, which has eleven creative tenants, the highest percentage in the sub-market. 16 Court has attracted a few, but costs and lease strictures make that address challenging. More owners need to step up.
DUMBO flourished due to short term leases, flexible credit requirements and speedy leases. None of these factors are active on Court and Montague.
Owners are often inflexible and/or old fashioned, out of touch with the business sector under discussion – the fastest growing sector in Brooklyn, predicted to double in the next few years. Where will these tenants go? Will tenants just bypass DTB and and go to Sunset Park and Crown Heights? If it is not working, change what you are doing.
Photo above: 32 Court Street
A reader sent in the photo above, as well as the following note: “I noticed this on my commute in this morning — It looks as if some of the new “Barclays Center” signs are up and uncovered — at least at the far end of the Q/B platform at Atlantic Avenue (or I guess I should say Atlantic Ave / Barclays Center). It looks as if the signs are up for the length of the platform, but the rest are covered.”