From left: 200 East 59th Street, 416 Kent Avenue, 138 East 50th Street, 10 Halletts Point

Macklowe, Lightstone Group, Durst, Spitzer, towers among the 2.8M SF given a TCO in January

By Adam Pincus

Harry Macklowe, the Lightstone Group and the Durst Organization were among the 10 developers who opened the largest buildings in New York City last month.

Those 10 buildings totaled 1.8 million square feet, while the other 195 structures that were completed totaled about 1 million square feet. Of the entire 2.8 million square feet, just over 100,000 was not residential or hotel.

Below is a brief description of each of the 10 largest projects.

1)
10 Halletts Point
Durst Organization
390,007 square feet
405-unit rental

The Durst Organization’s 405-unit 10 Halletts Point in Queens was the largest building to receive a TCO last month, a review of DOB data revealed. Market rate tenants will begin to move in next month, a company spokesperson said.

The 390,007-square-foot building, with an address of 26-01 1st Street, is the first structure completed of the planned 2.4-million-square-foot mega-development in Astoria that will ultimately have seven buildings.

10 Halletts, which obtained its first permits in December 2015, was originally expected to be completed in the spring of 2018, and in fact the developer filed for a TCO in late 2017. Many projects obtain a TCO from the city within a few months of applying for one. The 13-month delay was not very common, a review of filings showed, although some do drag on.

The building includes 25,000 square feet of ground floor retail, all of which was leased to the local grocery store chain Brooklyn Harvest Market.

Of the 405 units, 81 are affordable, with the balance market rate.

The project was partially financed in December 2017 by $125 million in bonds issued by the the New York State Housing Finance Agency which were purchased by Wells Fargo Municipal Capital Strategies.

2)
One Flushing at 133-55 41st Avenue
Monadnock Development
226,430 square feet
252-unit rental

Just two years after its first permits were issued, the city issued the initial TCO to Monadnock Development for its 252-unit affordable housing project One Flushing at 133-55 41st Avenue in Flushing.

The developers, in partnership with Asian Americans for Equality and HANAC, won the city’s competitive process in April 2015 for the right to develop the lot. The 226,430-square-foot building includes 28,673 square feet of retail.

In March 2016 they pre-filed the plans, and in January 2017, the city issued the first permits. Two years later, on January 25, the city issued the initial TCO.

3)
The Centrale, at 138 East 50th Street
Ceruzzi Properties
216,171 square feet
124-unit condominium

Ceruzzi Properties’ $578 million condominium project obtained its initial TCO last month, three and a half years after the first permits were issued.

The Centrale, at 138 East 50th Street is a 216,171-square-foot tower with 124 condominium units, and 4,600 square feet of retail.

The 789-foot high-rise with 63 stories is located between Third Avenue and Lexington Avenue.

The project got underway with the first permit issued in September of 2015, and two years later the firm filed for its initial TCO, but it would be almost a year and a half before the initial TCO was issued.

Ceruzzi’s partner on the project is Shanghai Municipal Investment’s U.S. division, SMI USA. Lou Ceruzzi, the founder and president of the development firm, died unexpectedly in 2017.

4)
416 Kent Avenue
Spitzer Enterprises
189,046 square feet
252-unit rental

The city issued Elliot Spitzer’s 252-unit 416 Kent Avenue its TCO on Jan. 10, four years after plans were first filed with the city and three and a half years after construction began. This is the first TCO for the three tower complex Spitzer Enterprises is developing along the Williamsburg waterfront.

The 189,046-square foot residential building includes 65 affordable units, as well as 3,413 square feet of retail. The building is just north of the larger 420 Kent Avenue which has two towers, and which has applied for but not yet obtained a TCO.

Spitzer signed a contract to purchase the parcel for the two buildings in August 2014. In January 2015, before he owned the land, he filed plans for 416 Kent. Two weeks later, on February 4, 2015 he closed on the $165 million acquisition with all cash, using no debt. He began construction quickly, in May 2015.

It was not until June 2016 that he obtained construction financing. Starwood Capital Group issued a four-year, interest only construction loan totaling $330 million, the Observer reported, of which $247.5 million was recorded in city records.

Spitzer filed for the TCO in September 2017, but the city did not issue it for more than a year later. Articles from 2017 said the building was expected to be completed in the summer of 2018. Spitzer did not respond to a request for comment.

5)
338 West 36th Street
McSam Hotel Group
168,024 square feet
570-room hotel

Sam Chang’s McSam Hotel Group was issued an initial TCO last month for its 570-key hotel at 338 West 36th Street, between Eighth and Ninth avenues in the Garment District.

The 26-story, 168,024-square-foot hotel, designed by frequent Chang collaborator, architect Gene Kaufman, also includes a bar/lounge and dinning area with indoor and outdoor seating, Department of Buildings records show.

Chang acquired the site for $50.7 million in August 2014, then pre-filed plans for the building in November that year. But the city did not issue the first permits until May 2016, as the size of the building changed.

Two months later, in July, Bank of the Ozarks, now known as Bank OZK, lent Chang $99.25 million. That loan was transferred in December of 2017 to Deutsche Bank and increased to $185 million.

In August 2018, Chang signed a contract to sell the building to Magna Hospitality Group for an undisclosed price, as PincusCo reported this week. The deal is expected to close in March, a source familiar with the transactions said.

6)
The Landing at 15 Bridge Park Drive
RAL Companies & Affiliates and Oliver’s Realty Group
137,547 square feet
140-unit rental

The 140-unit rental building dubbed The Landing which the RAL Companies & Affiliates and Oliver’s Realty Group developed in Brooklyn Heights received its initial TCO last month. The 16-story building has 100 affordable units and 40 free-market units.

The 137,547-square-foot building at 15 Bridge Park Drive includes 4,181 square feet of retail on the ground floor. The developers pre-filed plans in October 2016, and the first permits were issued in May of 2017.

The Landing is being developed in concert with a 28-story, market rate condo building, Quay Tower, at 50 Bridge Park Drive, which has a sellout price of $509.6 million for its 126 units.

In February of 2018, a New York State Supreme Court justice dismissed a lawsuit that sought to block the development of the two buildings in Brooklyn Bridge Park. https://therealdeal.com/2018/02/16/judge-tosses-lawsuit-seeking-to-block-pier-6-project/

All during the litigation, the project had carried on and in September, only a few months after that decision, the developers filed for the initial TCO. The city issued the initial TCO on January 28 of this year.

7)
2700 Jerome Avenue
B&B Urban and L+M Development Partners
134,598 square feet
136-unit rental

The 136-unit supportive housing project at 2700 Jerome Avenue in Kingsbridge, constructed by B&B Urban and L+M Development Partners, received its initial TCO last month, a little less than two years after receiving its first permits.

The 134,598-square-foot building has a small retail space on the ground floor, accounting for 1,145 square feet. The project was financed by $60.124 million in debt from bonds and subsidies arranged through state and city agencies.

Initial plans were pre-filed in December 2015, and the first permits were issued in February 2017. The financing was provided the following month, city records show.

8)
555 Waverly Avenue
Madison Realty Capital
136,813 square feet
190-unit rental

Madison Realty Capital’s mixed income rental building in Clinton Hill, 555 Waverly Avenue, obtained its initial TCO last month, about three and a half years after the city approved the first permits to build.

Madison acquired the site in September of 2014, paying $23.5 million. A few months later, in November, they filed plans, and the city issued the first permits in June 2015.
That same month, the development firm led by co-founders Josh Zegen and Brian Shatz, was given a $56.3 million loan by the German commercial bank Helaba.

The 136,813-square-foot project has a total of 190 units, including 38 that are affordable, and has 7,536 square feet of retail on the ground floor.

The developers filed for the initial TCO in May of 2018, and the city issued the TCO on January 30.

9)
105 West 28th Street
Lightstone Group
109,643 square feet
350-unit hotel

The Lightstone Group’s 350-unit hotel in Midtown South’s Flower District was given its initial TCO last month, after nearly three years of construction. The building will be operated as the Moxy Chelsea, as part of Marriott International’s new city-focused, cost-conscious brand.

The 36-story building at 105 West 28th Street between Sixth and Seventh avenues has at total of 109.643 square feet, which includes a dining space on the ground floor, a lounge on the second floor and more eating and drinking on the 35th floor, DOB records show.

Lightstone pre-filed plans five years ago, in January 2014, and the first permits were issued in March 2016. In December 2016, the Bank of the Ozarks issued a $70 million loan to refinance older acquisition debt and fund construction.

Last May, Lightstone filed for the TCO, and the city issued the TCO on January 16.

10)
200 East 59th Street
Macklowe Properties
109,855 square feet
67-unit condominium

Macklowe Properties’s new 67-unit condominium project at 200 East 59th Street obtained its initial TCO January 22, nearly five years since the land was put into contract and a little more than three years since construction began.

In April 2014, Harry Macklowe’s firm signed a contract with SL Green Realty and a separate contract with Emmes Asset Management to pay a reported $100 million for three parcels on the corner of Third Avenue and 59th Street and related air rights. With the building spanning 109,855 square feet according to DOB records, that’s about $910 per square foot. Shortly after closing on the purchase, Macklowe obtained a $65 million acquisition loan financed by United Overseas Bank, a lender based in Singapore.

Then in March 2015, Macklowe filed plans for the 35-story tower, which include 9,694 square feet of retail on the ground and second floors. The first permits were issued in October 2015 and after that construction began.

Five months later, in March 2016, Macklowe filed a condo plan with the New York State Attorney General. The project currently has a sellout of $332 million.

Even as work was underway, it would be another year before Macklowe obtained a construction loan. In December 2016, United Overseas Bank increased the debt to $181.7 million with the addition of a building loan (covering hard costs) and project loan (covering soft costs like architecture fees and filing fees).

The building was originally projected to be completed in the spring of 2018, according to a report