Patience is a virtue; one that billionaire tycoon and former mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis clearly has in droves.
Cats demonstrated this when he had the foresight to purchase a block of land on Myrtle Avenue in Fort Greene, over 30 years ago, back when the street was appropriately nicknamed Murder Avenue. Not many people would have seen the value in property in an area where Cats jokes that he had to carry two guns “just in case one of the guns runs out of bullets”. However, Cats saw it as a worthy investment. And boy was he right. A few decades and a change of zoning laws have allowed Cats to turn this once terrifying spot into the building site of 4 residential skyscrapers with retail stores on the ground floor. Not a bad deal for a piece of property purchased for under a million dollars says the understatement of the century.
In 2004, when the zoning laws changed, Cats finally saw time to pounce. His plan involved 4 towers and would have begun shortly thereafter if it weren’t for the Great Recession. But John Catsimatidis is more than just a virtuous man. He’s also a virtuoso, and a true master will always find a way. He decided to build the complex one tower at a time, starting with the Andrea, which opened in 2010. The nine-story home to 95 rental units was named after his daughter.
Work has already begun on the second building, a 15-story structure, which will house 205 rentals. He plans to name it the Giovanni after his son John, joking that “nobody wants to live in ‘The John,’ “.
The third building is expected to break ground later this year and the fourth, and largest of the bunch, is scheduled to begin construction in 2015.
Images via Dattner Architects
Neighborhoods : Fort Greene