Real Estate News from September 2011

  • New Yorkers Learn to Share... Bikes By Daniel Muhlenberg | September 30, 2011

    Don’t own a bike? Not a problem. If you’re bold enough to bike around the city, soon you will be able to rent a public bike, courtesy of the New York City Department of Transportation. The DOT plans to launch a Bike Share program in summer 2012, joining cities that already implemented Bike Share programs, such as Washington DC, London, and Paris. Operated and funded by Alta Bike Share – a private company – the Bike Share stations will be self-service and open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Using the public bikes won’t be free, but they won’t break the bank either.

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  • Former St. Vincent Building Converted Into Luxury Condominiums By Kimberly Milner | September 29, 2011

    When millions of dollars of debt convinced the board of St. Vincent Catholic Medical Center to close its flagship hospital in Greenwich Village back in 2010, land development proposals for one part of the St. Vincent campus has finally come to fruition as modern luxury condominiums.

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  • Russian Eateries Rush NYC Dining Scene By Kimberly Milner | September 29, 2011

    New York City may have restaurants featuring nearly every global ethnic cuisine, but the city will be hosting a wider range of high-class Russian restaurants in the near future. As a wave of Russian restaurants groups plan developments in a city with more than its fair share of sophisticates eager to divulge exotic cuisine, opening eateries eyeing bustling locales should fit right into the mix.

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  • New York City Real Estate: Now Immune from Downgrades By Phil Ryan | September 26, 2011

    When S&P downgraded the United States government from the coveted AAA to AA+, most thought that it would seriously affect the way we live, changing how we handle and in many ways value money. From the price of everyday commodities to even the most luxurious of purchases, the consensus was that each and every purchase made by most Americans would be the product of research in terms of cost-effectiveness and usefulness. There is one exception, however: Manhattan real estate, particularly in the luxury department.

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  • A Developer's Dream: Slowdown in Condo Construction Raises Prices By Daniel Muhlenberg | September 26, 2011

    Call it New York exceptionalism: at a time of global economic insecurity and a jobless recovery that threatens to slip into another recession, New York City condominium developers are enjoying the most favorable market conditions in recent memory. Exhibit A: 2 penthouses at One57, Extell Development’s prospective condo and hotel tower on West 57th Street. The current asking price for those penthouses? $98.5 million apiece. This is almost definitely the highest asking price for a penthouse in Manhattan ever. Gary Barnett, the president of Extell, told the New York Times that the other units in One57 would cost between $3,000 and $7,000 per square foot when sales begin in November. This is not an aberration but a striking example of a general trend. Condo prices have risen dramatically.

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  • Park 51 Opens to the Public By Daniel Muhlenberg | September 23, 2011

    After a long series of controversies that gained national attention, Park 51 Community Center - widely known by the misnomer "Ground Zero Mosque" - opened its doors last night. In accordance with its vision of being a multicultural community center as well as a place of worship, they hosted the photography exhibit NYChildren which featured pictures of New York City children from over 170 different countries. Sharif El-Gamal, CEO of Soho Properties and one of the leaders of the project, told that, "We couldn't think of a better first expression of Park51 than 170 different children from 170 different countries that really represent our city and will represent the foundation and the model of this project."

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  • Bikers Score Victory on the Upper East Side By Daniel Muhlenberg | September 22, 2011

    The Upper East Side’s Community Board 8 approved the installation of two new bike lanes on 1st and 2nd Avenue yesterday, marking a significant victory for bikers in Manhattan whose presence is a source of much contention. The bike lanes will run from 96th Street to 60th Street, and they will be situated between the sidewalk and a parking lane; the section between 72nd St and 60th St. will be new, while the existing bike lane between 72nd St. and 96th St. that runs between the parking lane and traffic lanes will be reconfigured.

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  • Riverside Center Nearing Fruition By Phil Ryan | September 22, 2011

    With all the development occurring on the West Side of Manhattan, we often tend to focus on Chelsea, the Meatpacking District, and Clinton, neglecting the Upper West Side in the process. After all, does the Upper West Side have the High Line? Well, no, it doesn’t, but instead its signature development project, Riverside South, is nearing completion with its final portion, Riverside Center, well under way. Although not as well known as many other luxury residential and commercial projects in Manhattan, Riverside Center is critical in the development and continued growth of not only the West Side but also Manhattan in general.

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  • New Limit on Government Insured Mortgage Loans By Kimberly Milner | September 21, 2011

    For some New York City co-op or condo buyers, October 1st looms in the horizon as a date that will make or break their real estate deals. Since HUD’s announcement in late August that the government planned to lower the limit on mortgage loans it backed, a slice of single-family homebuyers in high-cost metropolitan areas like Manhattan might be affected.

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  • Starchitect Frank Gehry Sets His Sights on a New Theater By Adam Rothstein | September 21, 2011

    Already an icon within the NYC architectural community, Frank Gehry, creator of such gems as 8 Spruce Street in Manhattan’s Financial District, has his sights set on developing a new theater. Designed for The Signature Theater Company, the project hopes to be a “Theatre community hub and a neighborhood destination, and has been designed to foster interaction among playwrights, collaborators, and the public.” Its location will be 555 West 42nd Street, between Dyer and 10th Avenues, and will be built within Clinton neighborhood’s MiMA building. The Signature Theater Company complex is planned to occupy an entire NYC block, and will include three general purpose theaters, a studio theater, a rehearsal studio as well as a public cafe and bookstore, hoping to be the home of eleven playwrights. Costing $66 million to develop, part of the financing will be provided by NYC, who is contributing roughly $25 million to the project. All of this under the watchful eye and tutelage of Frank Gehry, and promises to be yet another marvel within this “starchitect’s” storied career.

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