27 Contracts Signed At $4M+ Last Week

Report on Contracts Signed NYC Residential Properties $4 Million and Above

March 11-17, 2019

27 Contracts Signed


Twenty-seven contracts were signed last week at $4 million and above, the third time in the last 4 weeks that the total exceeded 20 sales. Condos outsold co-ops, 23-3, and 1 townhouse was in the mix. Half of the apartments were sold by developers.

The No.1 contract was Apartment 2 at 320 West 12th Street, asking $33.5 million, which sold within a month of listing. It is owned by hedge fund billionaire Steven Cohen, who paid $23,419,750 when he bought it as a new condo in June 2013. He then renovated the 9600-square-foot triplex, which features a dramatic double-height entrance gallery, a 34-foot great room, 5 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms, a library, formal dining room, a large eat-in kitchen, courtyard, private gym, and laundry room. It is in the Abingdon condo, a boutique building with only 10 units that opened for sale in 2012. Amenities include a doorman, gym, and storage.

The No. 2 contract was PH77B at 30 Park Place, sold by the sponsor with an asking price of $16.45 million, reduced from $18.875 million. It is in the new 82-story Four Season condo that was designed by Robert A.M. Stern, and opened for sales in 2014. The unit has 3,173 square feet with 3 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms, and 2 small terraces off the family room and master bedroom suite. Amenities include access to hotel services, 24-hour doorman and bellman, a fitness center, a 75-foot swimming pool, children’s playroom, conservatory with adjacent loggia, a screening room, a private dining room with a catering kitchen.

De Blasio Unveils $10B Plan To Flood-Proof Lower Manhattan

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Mayor Bill de Blasio unveiled on Thursday a $10 billion plan to extend the coastline of Lower Manhattan as much as 500 feet to protect from future floods. The Lower Manhattan Coastal Resiliency project is the result of a study that looked at ways to build resilience in low-lying neighborhoods like the Financial District and South Street Seaport. The study found the only feasible measure for these areas would be extending the shoreline about two city blocks into the East River by adding a new piece of land at or above 20 feet from current sea level.

A $165 million investment will elevate the Battery’s waterfront esplanade and integrate a grassy berm and construction is set to begin in 2021; rendering via NYCEDC

According to the study, led by the Mayor’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency and the city’s Economic Development Corporation, by the 2050s, 37 percent of properties in Lower Manhattan will be at risk from storm surge. By 2100, nearly 50 percent of properties would be at risk, as the sea level is projected to rise by six feet. In a press release, the mayor said Hurricane Sandy, which damaged about 17,000 homes in 2012, revealed just how at risk parts of Lower Manhattan are to climate change.

“That’s why we not only have to reduce emissions to prevent the most cataclysmic potential effects of global warming, we have to prepare for the ones that are already inevitable,” de Blasio said. “Our actions will protect Lower Manhattan into the next century.”

The study found that extending the shoreline of FiDi and the Seaport District, instead of building flood protection on land, is necessary because the area lacks the space, with dense infrastructure both above and underground. According to the city, the new shoreline will serve as a flood barrier during storms.

A master plan will be completed by the city over the next two years that will establish a “new public-benefit corporation” to finance, manage, and construct the project. The city said it will immediately procure a team of engineers and designers through a Request for Qualification later this month.

In Two Bridges, the Department of Design and Construction (DDC) will install both flood walls and deployable flip-up barriers. EDC is leading the $200 million project’s design and DDC will start construction in 2021; rendering via NYCEDC

And de Blasio also announced that the city will invest $500 million in capital projects for overall climate resilience, as well as in planning for the Lower Manhattan project. That investment will be spent expanding temporary flood-proof measures for the 2019 hurricane season, reconstructing the Battery Park City esplanade starting in 2020, elevating The Battery’s wharf and adding a berm at the back of the park in 2021, and designing a flood protection system for the Two Bridges neighborhood in the next two years.

A community outreach process is set to begin this spring, which will help determine the extent of the shoreline expansion and identify the project’s first phase.

“Impacts of climate change pose an existential threat to our quality of life and economic stability,” James Patchett, EDC President said. “A comprehensive strategy to protect Lower Manhattan against climate risks is critically necessary in order to safeguard our communities and secure our collective future.”

In a New York Magazine op-ed published on Wednesday, de Blasio said the project would need to be “backed by big federal dollars.” He also voiced support for the Green New Deal, an economic program proposed by Democrats that would address climate change.

“The national emergency is already here,” the mayor wrote. “We have to meet it head-on. And we need Washington behind us.”

A Video Tour Of ‘The Edge,’ The Tallest Outdoor Observation Deck In The Western Hemisphere

Related Companies is celebrating the grand opening of Hudson Yards on March 15, 2019. But the megadevelopment’s observation deck, resting 1,100 feet above Manhattan’s West Side, doesn’t open to the public until 2020.

The deck spans 7,500 square feet and stretches 65 feet out from the 101st floor of the Kohn Pedersen Fox-designed 30 Hudson Yards. Its height makes it the tallest outdoor deck in the Western Hemisphere and the fifth tallest in the world. And it boasts expansive views of New York City and New Jersey.

Related will be competing with observatory decks at One Vanderbilt, One World Trade, the Empire State building and Rockefeller Center. Prices haven’t been set for the deck at 30 Hudson Yards.

Check out the video above to see the insane views from “the edge.”

230 East 73rd Street, Unit 2G


230 East 73rd Street, Unit 2G

UPPER EAST SIDE, MANHATTAN

1 Bed  |  1 Bath  |  Co-op | Doorman | Gym

Offered At $849,000


Make your home in an Art Deco marvel in this stunning one-bedroom, one-bathroom co-op home featuring oversized living spaces and bright sunshine in a 1937 Emery Roth building.


A gracious entry hall filled with closets makes a welcoming first impression in this spacious and sunny corner residence. Tall, beamed ceilings, hardwood floors and wrought iron railings add old-world glamour to the oversized dining area, and the adjacent windowed kitchen is perfectly positioned for convenience and ease. Step down into the large corner living room and take in southern and western light and lovely views over the tranquil, landscaped courtyard. The decorative fireplace accentuates the grand scale of the room that stretches nearly 20 feet wide. The king-sized bedroom features a walk-in closet and a south-facing window, and the large bathroom is positioned for easy access to guests and residents alike.
Designed by the esteemed Emery Roth, 230 East 73rd Street is a handsome prewar co-op building featuring an elegant Art Deco lobby, 24-hour doorman and concierge service, live-in superintendent, gym, laundry, bike room, additional private storage and a stunning common courtyard garden. Washer-dryer units, pets, subletting and pieds-à-terre are permitted.


Located on a stunning tree-lined street in the heart of Lenox Hill, the fine dining, entertainment and conveniences the Upper East Side is known for surround the home on all sides. Stellar outdoor space and recreation can be found in Central Park and along the East River promenade. Transportation is effortless with the Q train just inches from your front door, and the 6 and F within easy reach.

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Neighborhood Association Calls For ‘Slow Street’ District In FiDi

A neighborhood association is calling for safer streets and sidewalks for pedestrians walking through Manhattan’s Financial District. In a report released on Tuesday by the Financial District Neighborhood Association (FDNA), “Make Way for Lower Manhattan,” the group calls for making the neighborhood a “slow street” district that would require cars to share space with pedestrians in an area stretching roughly between the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge and Battery Park.

The report addresses various obstacles walkers face in the tourist-heavy area, including construction scaffolding, piles of garbage, and lack of parking, mainly due to placard abuse by city agencies. Because it’s one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city, FiDi’s 17th-century street grid is being flooded with new skyscrapers, making streets more narrow due to construction sheds and scaffolding.

In 2016, Council Member Margaret Chin secured $500,000 in the city’s Department of Transportation budget to find mobility solutions for the area following a 2010 study by the agency. FDNA is calling on these allocated funds be used to implement “Make Way for Lower Manhattan” as soon as possible. And the association wants a pilot program that would test the shared-street idea by April 22, which is Earth Day.

“Lower Manhattan has evolved over the years to become a growing residential neighborhood that has retained its vital role as a commercial and tourist center,” Chin said in a statement. “With its unique colonial-era street grid, including streets and sidewalks, this increasingly congested area deserves more than just a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to essential city services like sanitation and street management.”

The report cites cities like Amsterdam and Copenhagen as examples of slow streets that work. The shared street space in these cities have no traffic lights or signs, crosswalks, or painted road arrows. Instead, pedestrians and cyclists can walk anywhere at any time.

In the Financial District, the association proposes creating a slow-street district that spans from Broadway to the South Street Seaport, and from City Hall Park to Bowling Green. Because of the neighborhood’s rich history, FDNA says the district could feature a historic walking trail that better connects visitors to significant sites of FiDi.

Plus, the group suggests three gathering places to anchor the slow district, including ramps near the Brooklyn Bridge, a transformed Bowling Green, and an area near Federal Hall.

Scott Gastel, a spokesperson for DOT, told amNY that “we welcome input such as this, which we will review,” referring to FDNA’s report. Read the association’s full study here.

Hudson Yards Received Larger Tax Breaks Than The Ones Promised to Amazon

The $20 billion, 28-acre Hudson Yards megaproject has been in the news recently as its official March 15 grand opening approaches. The New York Times reports that the nation’s largest residential development has gotten more than a little financial help from the city government to get there. In fact, public records–and a recent study by the New School–reveal that the development has received nearly $6 billion in the form of tax breaks and additional government assistance, twice the controversial $3 billion in incentives held out to Amazon to entice the retail tech giant to bring its second headquarters to Queens.

Where did $6 billion in taxpayer dollars go? Included in that tally were the $2.4 billion spent by the city to bring the 7 subway line to Hudson Yards; $1.2 billion was set aside for four acres of green space within Hudson Yards. The City Council kicked in $359 million to shore up interest payments on bonds when the development fell short of its revenue projections.

The point to be made is that the world’s most successful real estate developers–In this case Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group–are among the biggest beneficiaries of generous government tax breaks, meant to encourage development.

Of the incentives given to the Hudson Yards project, defenders say they’ll reap an enormous benefit to the city in the form of thousands of new jobs created. The subway extension is definitely a boon, and who can argue with parks and improvements at what was for years a jumble of old factories, tenements and a stretch of rail yards once known as “Death Avenue.”

But the city was lacking a subway stop on the far west side before the wealthy developers made it happen, and the counter-argument in both the case of Amazon and Hudson Yards is that big businesses with big profits at stake should pay their own way rather than getting government incentives–particularly tax breaks–sorely needed elsewhere.

The New School’s recent analysis, headed by Bridget Fisher and Flávia Leite, focuses on a particularly fortuitous property tax break that developers within the Hudson Yards area benefitted from which has cost the city more than $1 billion so far. This incentive can mean as much as a 40 percent discount for future developers in the area for as long as 20 years.

Additional incentives could be forthcoming for companies like mega-money manager BlackRock, with $5.98 trillion under management, who can get $25 million in state tax credits in exchange for adding 700 jobs at Hudson Yards. L’Oreal USA is in the running for $5.5 million of the same tax credit, and WarnerMedia could get $14 million.

Mayor Bill de Blasio has been a supporter of the Hudson Yards project–and of the Amazon deal–but appears to be rethinking the necessity of property tax breaks for big corporations since the recent Amazon debacle. He said in a statement that though Hudson Yards will benefit the city, “We’ve moved away from providing discretionary incentives like the prior administration. I believe state and local economic development programs need to be re-evaluated and updated.”

The city may approach the subject differently in a post-Amazon New York. Council Member Brad Lander of Brooklyn, a Democrat and founder of the Council’s Progressive Caucus and an opponent of the Amazon deal said he understands the benefits of subway expansion and new parks but, “We’re giving away tax breaks without paying close attention to what’s a good deal or not a good deal.”

James Parrott, director of economic and fiscal policies at the Center for New York City Affairs at the New School, expressed a similar sentiment: “We are still giving tax breaks to a development that enriches billionaire developers and high-rise commercial and residential development that is not benefiting ordinary people in New York.”

Did You Know Grand Central’s Clock Is Worth $20M?

For more than a century, millions of New Yorkers have been meeting “under the clock,” that great rendezvous point – and focal point – of Grand Central Terminal. The clock, which has presided over Grand Central’s Main Concourse since the Terminal opened in 1913, has stood out amidst the swirl of commuters and the flow of time, witnessing reunions of friends and lovers, beginning countless adventures, and playing a priceless role in the life of the city. Or, nearly-priceless. It turns out that appraisers from Sotheby’s and Christie’s have valued the four-sided brass masterpiece at between $10 and 20 million!

The brass beauty might be one of the most iconic timepieces in Manhattan, but it was made in Brooklyn, by the Self Winding Clock Company, at 205 Willoughby Avenue. Accordingly, the clock stands as a graceful and gorgeous reminder that Brooklyn was once the industrial center of the five boroughs, and “the grocery and hardware store” of the nation.

That provenance and fine workmanship contribute to the clock’s monetary value, but from an appraiser’s point of view, the clock benefits markedly from having a pretty face. Or four. Each of the 24-inch wide clock faces is made out of rare opal glass that certainly adds up.

The Monthly Update - March 2019

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Where’s the Listing Agent?!

Have you ever noticed how hard it is to find the actual listing broker for a property you’ve find online?

With a tactic called Premier Agent, Zillow (the parent company of Trulia, StreetEasy, NakedApartments and more) is making money by selling advertising space to brokers who can then place their photo and contact information alongside properties that are not their listings. Meaning online shoppers and potential buyers will reach out to them instead of the actual exclusive listing agent.

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You might say, “So what? I don’t have to work with this person, and if he or she can get into the unit, then that’s great!” Unfortunately, this kind of misinformation starts to spread throughout the marketplace eroding value for both buyers and sellers, while making Zillow heaps of cash, according to The Real Deal,  Zillow made $213M in revenue off their Premier Agent platform.

It’s one thing to have buyers working with a strong and dedicated sales agent who looks out for their best interests, performs due diligence, helps them gather information and negotiates the best deal possible. It’s something altogether different when you have an agent who bought their way into the middle of a situation they know nothing about. They’re not informed about the property that Premier Agent places them alongside. They have no information or value to add to the buyer's search. And let’s face it, a lot of the time, this is a convenient path to a bait-and-switch line like, “Sorry that property’s not available (when it actually is), but I have five more just like it! Would you like to view those?”

This service benefits no one involved in the actual property transaction. Not the seller, certainly not prospective buyers. The only entity that benefits is Zillow/Streeteasy, and they’re literally profiting off of misleading consumers both on the buyer side and the seller side.

The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY), the New York Residential Agent Continuum (NYRAC), and other real estate associations that advocate for fair and honest real estate practices have been trying to persuade Zillow to list the exclusive listing agent’s information more clearly. But it’s a very gray area in New York City and New York State law, so it might take years to work out.


In the meantime, below are screenshots of where to find the actual listing agent on Zillow, Trulia and StreetEasy. And remember, you can always find The Hoffman Team’s exclusive listings on our Compass website.


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Local Events 

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The Armory Show

March 7-10, 2019

The Armory Show is one of the art world’s biggest international art fairs, rivaled only by Frieze New York. It’s also the anchor for Armory Arts Week, when other fairs (eight for 2019) set up shop in New York. For tickets, click here.

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The Orchid Show
February 23 - April 28, 2019

The New York Botanical Garden’s Orchid Show exhibits thousands of species of beautiful blossoming orchids, and it’s one of the best NYC events and lasts through April.More info here. 

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St. Patrick’s Day

March 17, 2019

New York is about to turn into shamrock city! Sport your green duds and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day (NYC-style) at these epic parties and events, including the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. More info here.

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Women’s History Month

All Month

Women’s History Month in NYC means it’s time to attend some incredible panels, movie screenings, parties and more hosted by badass females that are making New York a better place to be. More info here. 


Stay Connected With #TheHoffmanTeam @HoffmanTeam

Pied-à-terre Tax Backed By NYC Council Members Now

Update 2/26/19: Council Members Mark Levine and Margaret Chin announced on Monday that they plan on introducing a resolution in support of the pied-à-terre tax, as amNYreported. The tax would be modeled after the measure sponsored by State Sen. Brad Hoylman and apply an annual surcharge on non-primary homes worth more than $5 million.

Last month, billionaire Ken Griffin closed on a penthouse at 220 Central Park South for over $239 million, making it the most expensive home ever sold in the United States. Griffin, the founder of the hedge fund Citadel, said he will not use the pricey pad as a primary residence, but instead as “a place to stay when he’s in town.” The staggering sale has renewed support from public officials for a pied-à-terre tax, which would place a yearly surcharge on homes worth $5 million and up, and apply to non-primary residences, as reported by the New York Times.

In 2017, there were 75,000 pieds-à-terre, up from 55,000 in 2014, a survey from New York City Housing and Vacancy found. Owners of luxury NYC homes who use them as non-primary residences tend to live and work outside of the city, avoiding city income taxes. And due to an outdated tax system, city co-ops and condos are not taxed at market value, but instead by looking at the income generated by comparable rental buildings, the Times reported.

Officials most recently called for the tax in 2014 but failed to move it forward in the state legislature because of opposition from Republicans in the Senate. But Griffin’s sale, roughly $100 million higher than the previous record-holder, has helped renewed interest in legislation that was first drafted by Sen. Brad Hoylman five years ago.

Hoylman’s bill, currently sitting in the Senate Cities Committee, would amend the state’s property tax law with a new section that allows New York City to impose an additional property tax on pied-à-terre residences. For properties valued between $5 million and $6 million, a 0.5 percent surcharge would apply to homes over $5 million.

Properties valued at $6 million and above would be subject to a fee and tax, increasing to match the value. For homes valued at $25 million and over, there would be a $370,000 fee and a 4 percent tax. According to estimates from the Fiscal Policy Institute, the city could generate over $660 million in tax revenue annually through less than 2 percent of non-primary residences across the boroughs.

“Billionaire oligarchs who own $238 million second homes can afford to pay a little more to sustain our subways, our schools and our city,” Hoylman tweeted on Saturday. “We need a pied a terre tax in New York. I’m proud to have written this bill and to lead the fight in the Senate.”

According to the Times, Council Member Mark Levine will propose that funds from the tax should go toward repairs at the city’s public housing complexes and to help spur more affordable housing development. And Council Speaker Corey Johnson also told the newspaper he plans on pushing lawmakers in Albany to approve the pied-à-terre tax.

“There are few better examples of the burgeoning inequality in our City than $238 million dollar homes that will most likely sit empty,” Johnson tweeted on Monday.

Gothamist reported last month that Griffin would need to pay nearly $8.9 million annually to the city for his Central Park home under the proposed bill, according to calculations made by James Parrott, the director of economic and fiscal policies at the Center for New York City Affairs.

This post was originally published on 2/11/19

[Via NY Times]

IKEA’s Newest Curtains Will Purify Your Indoor Air

The World Health Organization estimates that 90 percent of people worldwide are impacted by the harmful effects of pollution, which provoke a range of life-threatening diseases. While pollution is thought to cause around eight million deaths a year, more than half of those are the result of indoor pollution, not the smog-filled city streets we’re more commonly wary of. To help with this problem, IKEA is preparing to launch GUNRID, an air-purifying curtain. The low-cost, low-tech option will give New Yorkers (who are always short on space) a simple way of destroying indoor air pollution without using any bulky filtering systems.

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The curtain works much like a houseplant to purify indoor air. It uses a mineral-based photocatalyst, which has been developed by IKEA in collaboration with universities in Europe and Asia over the last few years. Once the catalyst is applied to a fabric, it reacts to light and breaks down common pollutants, like formaldehyde. While other versions of this catalyst exist, IKEA and their partners have developed one that reacts to indoor light as well as natural sunlight.

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Early tests have proved successful, but the fabric is still under development. “The next step is chamber tests and home tests to confirm that GUNRID efficiently removes volatile organic compounds in a room,” IKEA says.

“For me, it’s important to work on products that solve actual problems and are relevant to people,” said Mauricio Affonso, product developer at IKEA, in a statement. “Textiles are used across homes and by enabling a curtain to purify the air, we are creating an affordable and space-saving air purifying solution that also makes the home more beautiful”

Once the fabric is available, IKEA will be able to apply it to a range of home furnishings—from sofa upholstery to bed linens—transforming our interiors into passive pollution-fighting machines.

“We know that there is no single solution to solve air pollution,” says Lena Pripp-Kovac, Head of Sustainability at Inter IKEA Group. “We work long term for positive change, to enable people to live healthier and more sustainable lives.”  Last year, IKEA launched the Better Air Now! initiative, aiming to turn rice straw—a rice harvesting residue that is traditionally burned—into a renewable material source for IKEA products. The company is aiming to reduce its overall climate footprint by 70% before 2030.

GUNRID air purifying curtain is expected in IKEA stores next year. To learn more, watch this video from Ikea:

‘Bridge Over Tree’ now open in Brooklyn Bridge Park

Iranian-born, Minneapolis-based artist Siah Armajani’s installation “Bridge Over Tree” (1970) was unveiled Wednesday at Brooklyn Bridge Park on the Empire Fulton Ferry Lawn between the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges. The seminal work, which was first shown as a temporary sculpture at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis in 1970, is comprised of a 91-foot-long walkway with open, trussed sides and a shingled roof. A set of stairs at the sculpture’s midpoint climb up and down over a small evergreen tree. This is the first re-staging of the installation in almost 50 years

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According to a press release from the Public Art Fund, “Bridge Over Tree” is intrinsically political in that it encourages interaction between strangers as they walk over and around the bridge. For the artist, who conceived the work during a period of political turmoil during the Vietnam War and after he fled Iran due to his pro-democratic stance, the bridge–a recurring motif for decades–is never simply a passageway between two points. It represents a poetic form caught in-between—connecting people, places, communities, and ideas.

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The public installation coincides with a career-spanning survey “Siah Armajani: Follow This Line” at The Met Breuer, on view February 20 through June 2, 2019. “Siah Armajani: Bridge Over Tree” will be on view February 20 – September 29, 2019 on the Empire Fulton Ferry Lawn at Brooklyn Bridge Park.

635 West 42nd Street, Unit 8A


635 West 42nd Street, Unit 8A

MIDTOWN WEST, MANHATTAN

1 Bed  |  1 Bath  |  Condo | Doorman | Gym

Offered At $925,000


 

Wake up to shimmering Hudson River views in this mint-condition one-bedroom, one-bathroom corner unit in one of Hell's Kitchen's best full-service condominium buildings.


Spanning 759 square feet and surrounded by floor-to-ceiling glass, this spacious home is filled with sunlight and views at every turn. Enjoy open-sky views and a glimpse of the river in the large corner great room, while the sleek, open chef's kitchen dazzles with excellent cabinet space, a breakfast bar and top-notch stainless steel appliances. Gleaming white oak floors guide you to the west-facing bedroom where you'll find spectacular river views and a large closet. The bathroom is filled with floor-to-ceiling marble, the adjacent hall closet provides ample storage space, and the in-unit washer-dryer adds effortless convenience in this sunny Hell's Kitchen home.


The Atelier is a modern condominium tower offering a seemingly endless suite of amenities and services, including 24-hour concierge/valet and live-in superintendent, building-wide Wi-Fi, a spectacular 12,000-square-foot fitness center overlooking the city, indoor pool, tennis and basketball courts, driving range, billiards room, screening room, children's playroom, bike room and common storage, onsite parking, terraces and a glorious roof deck with barbecues and jaw-dropping Hudson River and city views.
Located in the heart of vibrant Hell’s Kitchen, residents of the pet-friendly building enjoy easy access to the city's cultural and culinary delights. Massive Hudson River Park is less than one block west; the Theater District just blocks away; and spectacular Hudson Yards is situated just a few minutes south. Transportation options abound with 7 and A/C/E trains, Port Authority Bus Terminal, West 39th Street ferry landing and the Lincoln Tunnel all within easy reach.

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26 Contracts Signed Last Week At $4M+

LUXURY MARKET REPORT 2019


Report on Contracts Signed
NYC Residential Properties
$4 Million and Above


February 11-17, 2019

26 Contracts Signed

Twenty-six contracts were signed last week at $4 million and above, the first time the luxury market reached the 20+ sales benchmark since the end of December. Why this spike in signed contracts? One theory: a perfect storm of a year-to-date stock market surge, stubbornly low interest rates, and sellers continuing to cut prices.

Are we experiencing a one-week wonder or the start of a Spring-season rebound? Stay tuned.

The No.1 contract was PHE at 11 East 68th Street, asking $36 million. This prewar triplex condo has 7,058 square feet including 6 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms, 4 fireplaces, and 4 terraces that total approximately 2,900 square feet. The unit was purchased as a white box in 2016 for $37,443,583 by Hirschfeld Properties/Elie Hirschfeld and then renovated.

The No. 2 contract was a townhouse at 11 East 82nd Street, asking $29.5 million, reduced from $44 million when it went on the market in November 2017. This 25-foot-wide limestone house has 12,729 square feet including 9 bedrooms, 7 bathrooms, 3 terraces, a garden and an elevator. The sellers are Broadway Producers Janet and Howard Kagan (The Last Comet, the revival of Pippin) who purchased the home for $24.450 million in October 2009.

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BREAKING NEWS: Amazon Pulls Out of Planned NYC HQ

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Amazon said on Thursday that it was canceling plans to build a corporate campus in New York City. The company had planned to build a sprawling complex in Long Island City, Queens, in exchange for nearly $3 billion in state and city incentives.

But the deal had run into fierce opposition from local lawmakers who criticized providing subsidies to one of the world’s most valuable companies. Amazon said the deal would have created more than 25,000 jobs.

Amazon’s decision is a major blow for Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio, who had set aside their differences to lure the giant tech company to New York.

As recently as Wednesday, the governor had brokered a meeting between Amazon executives and union leaders who had been resistant to the deal, according to two people briefed on the sit down. The meeting ended without any compromise on the part of Amazon, according to the people.

In recent days, supporters had begun mobilizing and felt encouraged by polls showing broad-based support for the company. Some could be seen wearing pins in support of Amazon. But those efforts did not sway many critics, who oppose the company for its anti-union practices and for the changes they feared it would bring to Queens.

To lure Amazon to Queens, city and state officials had offered the company one of the largest-ever incentive packages in exchange for a much larger return in jobs and tax revenue.CreditHiroko Masuike/The New York Times

To lure Amazon to Queens, city and state officials had offered the company one of the largest-ever incentive packages in exchange for a much larger return in jobs and tax revenue.CreditHiroko Masuike/The New York Times

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State Sen. Michael Gianaris, a vocal critic who was chosen for a state board with the power to veto the deal, said the decision revealed Amazon’s unwillingness to work with the Queens community it had wanted to join.

“Like a petulant child, Amazon insists on getting its way or takes its ball and leaves,” said Mr. Gianaris, a Democrat, whose neighborhood includes Long Island City. “The only thing that happened here is that a community that was going to be profoundly affected by their presence started asking questions.’’

“Even by their own words,’’ he added pointing to their statement, “Amazon admits they will grow their presence in New York without their promised subsidies. So what was all this really about?”

To attract Amazon, city and state officials offered the company one of the largest ever incentive packages in exchange for a much larger return in jobs and tax revenue

They agreed to remake plans for the Queens waterfront and move a distribution center for school lunches. They even agreed to give Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s chief executive access to a helicopter pad.

Under the plan, within 15 years the company could occupy as much as eight million square feet of office space.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, center, and Mayor Bill de Blasio, second from right, had been forcefully defending the deal they negotiated to bring Amazon to New York City.CreditChang W. Lee/The New York Times

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, center, and Mayor Bill de Blasio, second from right, had been forcefully defending the deal they negotiated to bring Amazon to New York City.CreditChang W. Lee/The New York Times

It included a campus of office buildings for as many as 40,000 workers.

But almost as soon as it was announced, the deal was met with resistance, from local elected officials like Mr. Gianaris and progressive groups that held rallies and petitioned in Queens against the deal.

Many critics were angered that the circumvented the normal land-use process and essentially eliminated any veto power by the City Council.

The idea of scaling back plans for the New York campus was a subject that had become increasingly discussed among the Amazon’s board, according to a source familiar with the board’s deliberations. The meetings between Amazon and Mr. Cuomo and Mr. de Blasio before the company decided to come to New York led executives to believe that there would be greater political support than turned out to be the case.

The company had chosen New York as well as a site in Northern Virginia for major expansion. On Thursday, the company said it had no plans to reopen a search for a second location.

Kathyrn S. Wylde, the chief executive of the Partnership for New York City, an influential business group, said, “How can anyone be surprised? We competed successfully, made a deal and spent the last three months trashing our new partner.”

Ms. Wylde said the reception Amazon had received sent a “pretty bad message to the job creators of the city and the world.”

Here is the statement released by Amazon:

After much thought and deliberation, we’ve decided not to move forward with our plans to build a headquarters for Amazon in Long Island City, Queens. For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term. While polls show that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned in Long Island City.

We are disappointed to have reached this conclusion — we love New York, its incomparable dynamism, people, and culture — and particularly the community of Long Island City, where we have gotten to know so many optimistic, forward-leaning community leaders, small business owners, and residents. There are currently over 5,000 Amazon employees in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Staten Island, and we plan to continue growing these teams.

We are deeply grateful to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio, and their staffs, who so enthusiastically and graciously invited us to build in New York City and supported us during the process. Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio have worked tirelessly on behalf of New Yorkers to encourage local investment and job creation, and we can’t speak positively enough about all their efforts. The steadfast commitment and dedication that these leaders have demonstrated to the communities they represent inspired us from the very beginning and is one of the big reasons our decision was so difficult.

We do not intend to re-open the HQ2 search at this time. We will proceed as planned in Northern Virginia and Nashville, and we will continue to hire and grow across our 17 corporate offices and tech hubs in the U.S. and Canada.

Thank you again to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio, and the many other community leaders and residents who welcomed our plans and supported us along the way. We hope to have future chances to collaborate as we continue to build our presence in New York over time.

Corey Kilgannon, Patrick McGeehan and Karen Weise contributed reporting.

198 7th Avenue, Unit 3F


198 7th Avenue, Unit 3F

PARK SLOPE, BROOKLYN

1 Bed  |  1 Bath  |  Co-Op

Offered At $575,000


 

Filled with light and gorgeous updates, this lovely one-bedroom, one-bath home is an ideal haven in the heart of Park Slope. 

Three large east-facing windows cast gorgeous sunlight into this well-planned 500-square-foot abode creating a light and airy atmosphere all day long. The bright living room features a chic exposed brick wall and decorative fireplace, while the modern open kitchen is filled great cabinet space, stone counters and full-size stainless steel appliances, including a gas range, dishwasher and built-in microwave. Enjoy a comfortable perch at the large island/breakfast bar for casual dining or meal prep.

The large king-sized bedroom is tucked at the quiet rear of the home and features three roomy closets, and the beautiful bathroom is covered in floor-to-ceiling stone with a modern vanity and frameless glass shower. Inlaid hardwood floors add an old-world vibe and through-the-wall air conditioning delivers year-round comfort in this fantastic Park Slope walk-up. 

198 7th Avenue is a well-maintained, pet-friendly boutique co-op that permits in-unit washer-dryers with board approval. Located at the epicenter of desirable Center Slope, you'll enjoy immediate proximity great dining and nightlife along 7th and 5th avenues. Two blocks east, massive Prospect Park offers 500 acres of lush outdoor space, trails, playgrounds, year-round greenmarkets, dog runs and fantastic events. Transportation is a breeze from this central location with F, G, R and 2/3 trains all within reach.

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Support For A Pied-à-Terre Tax Grows In NYC After $240M Penthouse Sale

Last month, billionaire Ken Griffin closed on a penthouse at 220 Central Park South for over $239 million, making it the most expensive home ever sold in the United States. Griffin, the founder of the hedge fund Citadel, said he will not use the pricey pad as a primary residence, but instead as “a place to stay when he’s in town.” The staggering sale has renewed support from public officials for a pied-à-terre tax, which would place a yearly surcharge on homes worth $5 million and up, and apply to non-primary residences, as reported by the New York Times.

In 2017, there were 75,000 pieds-à-terre, up from 55,000 in 2014, a survey from New York City Housing and Vacancy found. Owners of luxury NYC homes who use them as non-primary residences tend to live and work outside of the city, avoiding city income taxes. And due to an outdated tax system, city co-ops and condos are not taxed at market value, but instead by looking at the income generated by comparable rental buildings, the Times reported.

Officials most recently called for the tax in 2014 but failed to move it forward in the state legislature because of opposition from Republicans in the Senate. But Griffin’s sale, roughly $100 million higher than the previous record-holder, has helped renewed interest in legislation that was first drafted by Sen. Brad Hoylman five years ago.

Hoylman’s bill, currently sitting in the Senate Cities Committee, would amend the state’s property tax law with a new section that allows New York City to impose an additional property tax on pied-à-terre residences. For properties valued between $5 million and $6 million, a 0.5 percent surcharge would apply to homes over $5 million.

Properties valued at $6 million and above would be subject to a fee and tax, increasing to match the value. For homes valued at $25 million and over, there would be a $370,000 fee and a 4 percent tax. According to estimates from the Fiscal Policy Institute, the city could generate over $660 million in tax revenue annually through less than 2 percent of non-primary residences across the boroughs.

“Billionaire oligarchs who own $238 million second homes can afford to pay a little more to sustain our subways, our schools and our city,” Hoylman tweeted on Saturday. “We need a pied a terre tax in New York. I’m proud to have written this bill and to lead the fight in the Senate.”

According to the Times, Council Member Mark Levine will propose that funds from the tax should go toward repairs at the city’s public housing complexes and to help spur more affordable housing development. And Council Speaker Corey Johnson also told the newspaper he plans on pushing lawmakers in Albany to approve the pied-à-terre tax.

“There are few better examples of the burgeoning inequality in our City than $238 million dollar homes that will most likely sit empty,” Johnson tweeted on Monday.

Gothamist reported last month that Griffin would need to pay nearly $8.9 million annually to the city for his Central Park home under the proposed bill, according to calculations made by James Parrott, the director of economic and fiscal policies at the Center for New York City Affairs.

[Via NY Times]

16 Contracts Signed At $4M+ Last Week

LUXURY MARKET REPORT 2019

Report on Contracts Signed
NYC Residential Properties
$4 Million and Above

February 4-10, 2019


16 Contracts Signed

Sixteen contracts were signed last week at $4 million and above, one more than the previous week, continuing the lackluster trend of the last few months. Condos outsold co-ops, 9 to 5, and 2 townhouses were in the mix. Only 4 condos were sold by developers.

Stat Geek Alert: For the first time since March 2017, the top 2 contracts were in co-ops.

The No.1 contract was 14/15A at 941 Park Avenue, asking $12.5 million, reduced from $13.5 million when it went on the market in August. The duplex has 4 bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms. Most of the rooms face Park Avenue including a 28’ x 28’ living room, a library, and master suite with a dressing room. The unit also has an eat-in kitchen with wine storage, staff and laundry rooms. The building has a gym.

The No. 2 contract was the 9th floor at 117 East 72nd Street, asking $11.5 million, reduced from $12.5 million when it was listed in October. This 14-room co-op has 4 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, a library, and 3 fireplaces, plus 2 staff rooms. The living room, library, and master have wood-burning fireplaces, and all of them face south onto 72nd Street. The apartment needs work.

Star Sale: The top townhouse sale was 45 West 84th Street, asking $9.75 million, reduced by $1 million when it was listed in October. The seller was actress Mariska Hargitay of Law & Order: SVU fame. This 6-story, 6,925-square-foot brownstone has an elevator and floor-to-ceiling casement windows that overlook a garden off the kitchen. The house was originally purchased for $10.7 million in July 2012.

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Amazon Is Rethinking Its Move To L.I.C.

After facing months of intense backlash from residents and local officials, Amazon is rethinking its plan to open a massive complex in the Queens neighborhood of Long Island City, the Washington Post reported on Friday. Sources told the newspaper, which is owned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, that executives at the tech company have had discussions to reassess the plan to open its “HQ2” in New York City. “The question is whether it’s worth it if the politicians in New York don’t want the project, especially with how people in Virginia and Nashville have been so welcoming,” a source told the Post.

Amazon announced last November its plan to split its headquarters between Long Island City and Arlington, Virginia, with each site expected to house 25,000 employees. Plans released by Amazon and city and state officials included the construction of a mixed-use complex along the East River, across an area known as Anable Basin.

The opposition to Amazon’s move from local politicians and advocacy groups came swiftly after learning that the city and state offered the company–the most valuable in the world–nearly $3 billion in grants and incentives.

On top of that, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the state would create a general project plan to rezone the site, a process that does not require approval from the City Council. Members criticized Mayor Bill de Blasio and Cuomo for meeting with Amazon and reaching a deal behind closed doors.

In response, the Council has held a series of hearings to grill both Amazon officials and those from the city’s Economic Development Corporation. The most recent hearing revealed that Amazon would oppose efforts by its NYC workforce to unionize.

Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, a representative of LIC and vocal opponent of the plan, called Amazon “dramatically anti-union” following the hearing in a WNYC interview. “That’s not a New York value,” he added. “We can’t crave.”

And another roadblock Amazon faces? Sen. Michael Gianaris, the Queens representative who was recently nominated by the State Senate to serve on the Public Authorities Control Board, the entity which must approve the Amazon plan. Gianaris has called for the deal with Amazon to be scrapped entirely. “Amazon may be rich, but Jeff Bezos can’t buy his way to victory on this one. Sorry, Jeff, you can’t have our $3 billion,” he wrote in a tweet last month.

While no officials plan to ditch Queens and find an alternative city is underway, Amazon has not officially leased or purchased any space in Long Island City for the project, which would make it easier to withdraw from the plan. The company had plans to temporarily lease over one million square feet of office space at One Court Square in LIC this year.

During the most recent hearing, Amazon rebutted concerns from officials by discussing its proposal to fund computer science classes at 130 high schools in the city as well as hire 30 New Yorkers living at NYCHA developments for customer service positions. Queensbridge Houses, the largest public housing development in the country sits next to the proposed Amazon site and is home to about 6,000 residents.

“We were invited to come to New York, and we want to invest in a community that wants us,” Brian Huseman, the vice president for public policy at Amazon, said during the Council hearing last month.

He also added, as reported by the New York Times, that the company wanted to “be part of the growth of a community where our employees and our company are welcome.”

[Via Washington Post]

Expect Delays On The 4, 5, D, N, and Q Lines This Weekend

It’s going to be the second weekend without L service between Brooklyn and Manhattan, there will be a slew of skipped stops across many of the lines, and longer than usual wait times on the 4, 5, D, N, and Q trains. Riders of the 2, 3, 6, and G are in luck this weekend with no planned interruptions on the slate for you (though there’s always a risk for unplanned hiccups). Read on for the full details and keep frustration at bay this weekend.

1 trains skip 168 Street in both directions.

4 trains run local in both directions between Grand Central-42 Street and Brooklyn Bridge in Manhattan. Manhattan-bound 4 trains skip 161 Street, 167 Street, 170 Street, Mt Eden Avenue, and 176 Street. trains will only be running every 16 minutes.

5 trains run local in both directions between Grand Central-42 Street and Brooklyn Bridge in Manhattan. Expect long wait times—5 trains are only running every 20 minutes.

Hunters Point Avenue and Vernon Blvd-Jackson Avenue 7 trains board at the Flushing-bound platform.

Downtown A trains will make stops at 163 Street, 155 Street, and 135 Street in Manhattan.

C trains run express in both directions between 145 Street and Canal Street. C trains won’t be running between 145 Street and 168 Street in Manhattan, but the A will make those local stops.

Jamaica Center-bound E trains run express from 71 Avenue to Queens Plaza and skip Briarwood and 75 Avenue in Queens.

There will be no L service between Broadway Junction in Brooklyn and 8 Avenue in Manhattan, take the M14 or a free shuttle bus.

There will be no B service this weekend.

There won’t be D service between 59 Street-Columbus Circle in Manhattan and Stillwell Avenue in Brooklyn; take the FQ, or a free shuttle bus instead. The 62 Street/New Utrecht Avenue Station D, N transfer passageway is closed due to elevator repairs. Uptown D trains stop at 135 Street in Manhattan. D trains will run every 12 minutes.

Jamaica-bound F trains skip Sutphin Blvd, Briarwood and 75 Avenue in Queens.

M service is extended to the 96 Street Q Station in Manhattan.

Coney Island-bound N platforms at Fort Hamilton Pkwy, New Utrecht Avenue, 18 Avenue, and 20 Avenue are temporarily closed. N trains run every 12 minutes.

Uptown Q trains will make local stops at Prince Street, 8 Street, 23 Street, and 28 Street in Manhattan. There won’t be any Q service between Kings Highway and Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center, hop on a free shuttle bus. Q trains run every 12 minutes

Forest Hills-bound R trains run express from Queens Plaza to 71 Avenue in Queens.

There won’t be any J service between Crescent Street in Brooklyn and Jamaica Center in Queens, take the E or hop on a free shuttle bus.

Per the whims of the MTA, there will probably be other problems, and the problems stated above are subject to change and worsen.

Eleanor Roosevelt’s UES Townhouse Is On The Market For $13.5M

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Here’s a chance to own the former home of one of the nation’s favorite First Ladies, Eleanor Roosevelt. She lived at 211 East 62nd Street in Lenox Hill from 1953 to 1958, following her husband’s death. In the opulent spaces, she entertained the likes of Indira Gandhi, Adlai Stevenson, and John Kennedy, pursued her social justice and political causes, and penned her popular column for “My Day.” Investor Charles Ueng purchased it for $9 million in 2011 and spent $2 million on renovations before putting it on the market for $18 million in 2015. It’s been on and off the market since then and was just relisted with a lower asking price of $13,500,000.

The five-story townhouse was built in 1873 by M.C. Merritt for Thomas Kilpatrick as a brownstone row house and was later renovated with a red brick facade and the addition of two entrances—residential and service—flanked by classical stone columns. It was designated as part of the Treadwell Farm Historic District in 1967.

The home was recently restored by interior designer Maria Masi. Spanning 5,225 square feet of interior space, the home is divided into distinct private, guest, and staff areas full of details like decorative medallions and moldings, wood-paneled walls, and arched doorways. There are four bedrooms, each with an en-suite bathroom, and six wood-burning fireplaces with antique mantels. In addition to multiple staircases, a six-stop elevator connects all the levels of the home and provides convenience.

The first two levels are dedicated to entertainment space, beginning with a reception gallery featuring Iksel wallpaper, a restored Victorian ceiling, marble floors, a central fireplace, custom millwork and stained glass arched French doors opening onto a lush garden with a stone fountain.

A spiral mahogany staircase connects the first floor to the parlor level, where you’ll find a formal dining room, a study, and a top-of-the-line eat-in kitchen. A second living room features an outdoor terrace with a wrought iron balcony overlooking the rear garden.

There are two full-floor master suites on the third and fourth floors, both of which boast luxurious bathrooms, wet bars, and fireplaces.

A separate staircase provides access to the fourth and fifth floors, and the additional privacy makes them great options for guests. Here you’ll find two additional bedrooms with Parquet de Versailles floors and more custom mahogany millwork. The fourth bedroom, currently used as a reading room, has a marble fireplace and it’s own double sink bathroom.

A pristine basement with separate bath and laundry area could be used as a gym, media room, or playroom. In addition to the garden, there’s also a rooftop deck—which comes with a dog run!—bringing the total amount of outdoor space to a generous 1,770 square feet.

This would be a magnificent family home, but the listing also suggests it could become the headquarters of a nonprofit organization. The flexible layout “offers the opportunity to share the Roosevelt legacy of lifelong service, promoting human rights for all, at a time when her values resonate profoundly.”

[Listing: 211 East 62nd Street by Barbara Evans-Butler and Cian Connor of Stribling]