Real Estate News from February 2012

  • Alternative Enforcement Program: Manhattan's Safety Net By Justin Spees | February 22, 2012

    While high-end Manhattan residential real estate has been having a banner year, there are still myriad apartments in the city that are on the low end of the spectrum. In November 2007 the Bloomberg administration launched a program designed to address those buildings. It created the Alternative Enforcement Program (AEP), an enforcement body of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, that would inspect residential buildings throughout New York's five boroughs and seek out violations it deemed either class B, “hazardous,”, or class C, “immediately hazardous." The 200 worst buildings—buildings with the most or most extreme violations—were then given 4 months to get themselves up to code, at which point the city would fine them periodically until they repaired themselves up to the department’s standards.

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  • MiMa Sets Itself Apart From the Crowd By Daniel Muhlenberg | February 22, 2012

    Of all the unexpected outcomes the thriving rental market produced, perhaps the most surprising is that Manhattan’s premier rental building is located on 42nd Street and 10th Avenue in the Far West Side of Midtown West, an area that’s not exactly known for high-end luxury. Bolstered by the market, Related Companies rented 95% of the 600-plus luxury apartments in MiMa, short for Midtown Manhattan, in a mere 8 months.

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  • New Fulton Street Transit Center Provides a Glimpse of the Future By Daniel Muhlenberg | February 21, 2012

    If you want to know the difference between a subway stop and a transit center (hint: Subway stops don’t cost $1.4 billion to renovate), look no further than Fulton Street in the Financial District. Straphangers have endured years of construction there, but new renderings of what’s to come make it look like the headaches will be well worth it.

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  • Remembering the Mansions of Manhattan's Gilded Age By Gabrielle Hughes | February 17, 2012

    While New York City’s wealthiest residents now find themselves in townhouses, or on top of one another in luxury condominiums, living in extravagant Manhattan mansions was a highly regarded way for people to display their wealth. The large homes began to pop up across the city around the start of the 20th century, or the Gilded Age, a time in which palatial-sized and often gaudy residences were commonplace.

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  • Governors Island Getting $300 Million Facelift in 2013 By Daniel Muhlenberg | February 17, 2012

    The future looks bright for Governors Island. Late last year the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved plans to invest $300 million into the first phase of overhauling the 172-acre island’s infrastructure and open spaces, renovations that will hopefully transform the island from an afterthought into one of New York City’s premier public parks and tourist destinations. Furthermore, if the renovations are successful, Governors Island may even become a popular Manhattan neighborhood among buyers and renters looking for new apartments.

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  • New Poll Suggests Most Chelsea Residents Support Chelsea Market Expansion By Justin Spees | February 16, 2012

    A newly released poll of residents in Manhattan neighborhoods in and near the Chelsea area says that, despite significant opposition at public meetings, most residents support an expansion of the Chelsea Market. The poll, which was conducted by Global Strategy Group and sponsored by the Chelsea Market Coalition—a pro-business group that supports the expansion—said that 62% of people polled are in favor of the expansion. The Chelsea Market Coalition has not released the poll or the sample size.

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  • New Private School Will Open in West Chelsea This Fall By Daniel Muhlenberg | February 15, 2012

    West Chelsea is accustomed to young people, but this trendy Manhattan neighborhood is now witnessing a youth invasion of a different sort. West Chelsea has become home to many young families as a new generation of parents moves in. Many of these newcomers want to live in downtown Manhattan apartments but can’t afford them in more expensive neighborhoods, so they are opting to move into West Chelsea apartments instead. Consequently, this industrial neighborhood long associated with singles and artists is starting to resemble the Financial District in the respect that it is now a popular destination for families, and a new private school will further solidify West Chelsea’s status as family-friendly. The Avenues World School, a for-profit institution located on 10th Avenue and 25th Street, is scheduled to open in the fall, a big sign that West Chelsea’s demographic shift is just getting started.

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  • Jeremy Lin Weighs His Real Estate Options By Justin Spees | February 14, 2012

    The night before Jeremy Lin was reluctantly put in by the New York Knicks and ended up scoring a miraculous 25 points, he was sleeping on teammate Landry Fields’ couch. By leading the Knicks to victory the next night, and the next three nights, and scoring 109 total points, he officially made history for scoring more points in his first four games than any previous starter. But the story got even better when the New York Times reported that the undrafted point guard was sleeping on his brother Joshua’s couch.

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  • DOT Attempts to Make Delancey Street Safer, Shortens Crosswalks By Daniel Muhlenberg | February 13, 2012

    In response to a string of fatal accidents, the Department of Transportation passed a new safety plan last week that will shorten the pedestrian crosswalks on Delancey Street, one of the widest and deadliest streets in Manhattan. The crossing distance for pedestrians on Delancey Street is 165 feet with a 30 foot median, so the DOT decided to shorten 14 of the 19 crosswalks between the Bowery and Clinton Street by extending the sidewalks, thus shortening crossing time. However, many of the more popular proposals among the residents of the Lower East Side and Chinatown apartments were rejected by the DOT under the rationale that traffic flow to and from the Williamsburg Bridge must not be hindered. The DOT will implement these changes by June of this year.

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  • Flea Market in Inwood Benefits Businesses Destroyed by Fire By Justin Spees | February 13, 2012

    After a raging three-alarm fire took down a community building in Inwood the night of January 3rd, residents of the neighborhood immediately began hosting fundraisers to help the businesses that had been destroyed. And for two Inwood residents, it was the perfect time to put a plan that had long been in gestation into effect. “We are working on starting an Inwood flea market, some of the proceeds will go the fund,” Daniel Strong, co-owner of a vegan catering company called Chickpea and Olive, said during a Manhattan neighborhood meeting that took place the Friday after the fire.

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