A deal to bring the National Urban League back to Harlem was reached last month as part of a mixed-use development project planned for 125th Street. In addition to affordable housing, office space for nonprofits, and the city’s first museum dedicated to civil rights, the $242 million project, known as the Urban League Empowerment Center, includes a new 44,000-square-foot Target, as the New York Post first reported.
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Nearly five years ago, the city rezoned a portion of Hell’s Kitchen to allow the Clinton Housing Development Corporation and developers Taconic Investment Partners and Ritterman Capital to undertake a two-building residential project between 10th and 11th Avenues. The larger of the two, a 22-story rental with 392 units at 525 West 52nd Street, launched an affordable housing lottery for 80 apartments two summer ago. The shorter, 13-story component is located next door at 540 West 53rd Street, and as of today, New Yorkers earning 80, 100, 125, or 165 percent of the area median income can apply for all 102 of its residences. They range from $1,091/month studios to $3,270/month two-bedrooms and have access to amenities including two terraces, children’s “splash pad,” a fitness center, laundry room, and the adjacent public community garden.
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For many New Yorkers, the Lower East Side is one neighborhood that still has a lot of authenticities and good ‘ole New York grit left. It has been described as Manhattan’s “last frontier of cool. The promised land of old as well as new… Where the Godfather lives side by side with a hipster movie.” Put more tangibly by Benjamin Baccash of Taconic Investment Partners, the developer of LES’s Essex Crossing, “The Lower East Side has wonderful restaurants, art galleries, and great street life. It’s a real neighborhood and that’s what a lot of people are looking for.”
In addition to great diversity, personality, and transportation, the city is undertaking huge improvements on the east river waterfront, and developers are erecting new developments at all corners of the ‘hood. Ahead, 6sqft takes a look at everything that’s keeping the Lower East Side a vestige of old New York during its contemporary resurgence, from massive projects like Essex Crossing to a booming art gallery scene.
As Irving Berlin once said, “Everybody ought to have a Lower East Side in their life.”
Rendering of Coney Island North Venture via The Prusik Group
It’s slated to be a big year for Coney Island–and not just when it comes to new rides and attractions. A massive development will join the growing redevelopment of the beachfront locale, which will be home to at least four major projects totaling 2,151 units in the coming years. According to CityRealty, Taconic Investment Partners and The Prusik Group are planning to build a ground-up, mixed-use complex tentatively referred to as “Coney Island North Venture.” It’ll be comprised of 1,000 apartments, 80,000 square feet of office space, and 150,000 square feet of retail along Surf Avenue. The complex will join a new 42-story tower, plus a 440-unit development that will boast its very own trolley.
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Last June, Mitsui Fudosan, one of the largest real estate companies in Japan, bought a majority stake in Taconic Investment Partners‘ 525 West 52nd Street, a $330 million rental development between 10th and 11th Avenues. As the Journal reported at the time, the two-towered Hell’s Kitchen project (one is 22 stories, the other 14) will offer 392 apartments with 80 set aside for low-income residents, as it was developed through the city’s 421-a program. Now, those affordable units have come online through the city’s housing lottery, and they range from $913/month studios to $1,183/month two-bedrooms.
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