Thursday, August 6, 2015

The Wraps Are Off 151 East 78th

151 South Face (A. Fine 8/2015)

151 Top East (A. Fine 8/2015)

151 Top West (A. Fine 8/2015)

The wraps are finally off at 151 East 78th Street, the elegant Pre-War reproduction condo with extraordinary pricing and lightning fast sell-through. Architect, Peter Pennoyer did a pretty kick ass job here, don't you think? This fits in rather well in the Metropolitan Hill section of the UES, and the $3200/psf+ is right on target for the hood as well. Just waiting for the granite and limestone base to put the icing on the cake!
Metropolitan Hill Development-O-Rama (Jan, 2015)
Curbed Files for 151 East 78th (Curbed)

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Tommie Hotel Rises On East 31st Street

Left- Old Rendering (courtesy KSNY), Right- New Rendering (courtesy GSK)
5/2015 (A. Fine)
It was to be a 37 story hotel, now it is to be a 30 story hotel. It was to be all shiny glass, now it appears it will be about half glass and half metal. It was to open in 2014, then 2015, now 2016. The one constant with the future Tommie Hotel is change. Designed by Gwathmey Siegel Kaufman, I wont even start on the various financial arrangements, partners, and trades made since prior to the financial crisis. Here is a pic, a couple renderings past and current, and we'll see if they can get this finished without further changes.
Curbed Tags on Tommie Hotel (Curbed)

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Fed Flash: Rates Remain Unchanged, Likely To Remain Flat Until The Fall

The Fed has once again left rates unchanged. The April meeting concluded very much like the March meeting in statement and substance. I remain convinced that a rate hike is unlikely before Fall, and rate hikes and an ease of accommodative policy will be very gradual. The Fed outlines six factors to consider before raising rates: the labor market, inflation gauges, inflation expectations, and "financial and international developments", and of course the strength of the economy. The strongest of these indicators at present is the labor market which has remained healthy. Jobless claims are at a the lowest level in a decade, so the gradual improvement in the labor looks good. Wages are just starting to uptick, which would suggest that the slack in the labor market has finally started to tighten up. Inflation is tame, especially in light of lower energy prices, but the expectation in the ever vague fed-speak of "medium term" looks to be around their target of 2%. The financial markets are relatively stable for now, yet the international situation remains shaky. So, by most indicators, we are still in a holding pattern. The Fed sees the Winter pause in growth as "transitory", but will have to see evidence that it is right before it takes any action.

How does this play for the NYC real estate market? For now, more Goldilocks!

Keep an eye on the blog for an upcoming entry looking at the NYC real estate market in depth.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Update: 205 East 92nd Getting Bricked, Up to 15 Stories

205 E 92nd, Front (A. Fine 4/2015)

205 East 92nd Back- East Face (A. Fine, 4/2015)

Brick (A. Fine, 4/2015)
Last we checked in on 205 East 92nd Street, back in January, the base was just coming together. What a difference a few months makes. The building is now taking shape, rising 15 stories, and giving us a preview of the neutral brick fa├žade. The finished product by Related will rise 425 feet, include 231 residential units (they are probably leaning condo, but last report was condo/rental mix), a 46,000sf school for the learning disabled, and 33,000sf of retail.

What I find most interesting is that the average size apartment will be a little better than 1400sf. That is a stark contrast to the full floor, 3000+ square foot McManhattamansions (yes, I am using that made up word) being built in the area. I can only hope that this is a trend towards "reasonable sized" apartments. Yes, there is demand for some of the huge apartments, but the demand for normal sized apartments is extreme. I am sure Related will be rewarded for recognizing this segment of the market.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Dazzling "Fata Morgana" Art Installation at Madison Square Park Takes Shape

Fata Morgana (A. Fine, 4/2015)
Fata Morgana Worker (A. Fine, 4/2015)

Fata Morgana Path (A. Fine, 4/2015)
"Fata Morgana" (referring to a mirage just above the horizon), an ambitious art installation by local artist Teresita Fernandez, is taking shape in Madison Square Park. The completed work, which consists of large golden polished metal disks shaped reminiscent of foliage, should be ready by June 1st. The installation will cover 500 feet of walkways with the fanciful disks and last through the winter.

I'm not an art aficionado, but from this layman's sensibilities I find the art both pleasant and intriguing. The warmth from the golden glow from the disks gives parkgoers a different perspective of the environment. The reflections also enhance the senses and alter your perception of your surroundings. It's different, interesting and ever changing based on your angle, the amount of light, and the season. This being New York, there are reports that some locals are "outraged" and "furious" about the shade that these disks create and the size of the project. As Artnews, that noted this anger points out, the installation covers just 9% of the park. Hey, this is New York, we love art, so to the sourpusses that have a problem with it, I say "Get-ova-it"!

Mad Sq Art: Teresita Fernandez (Madison Square Park Conservancy)
Parkgoers Furious Over Teresita Fernandez Sculpture at Madison Square Park (Artnews)

100 East 53rd (formerly 610 Lex) Sees Daylight

100 East 53rd (A. Fine, 4/2015)

100 East 53rd (A. Fine, 4/2015)
100 East 53rd Render (Foster & Partners)
What was an upscale vacant lot just a year ago, and a 40 foot hole in the ground seven months ago is now 50' above street level and ready to soar. We know the hard work of financing and then foundation building is done, so Aby Rosen's re-addressed 100 East 53rd Street is set to soar.

The project, which initially stalled during the financial crisis is an exciting one. Foster and Partners, who have only one rendering available, promise a modern take on Modernism. The inspirations are the nearby Seagram Building, and one of my all-time faves, the Lever House. The finished product is to rise razor sharp at 61 stories with 94 apartments, a two story restaurant, and the expected plethora of amenities including 9th floor pool. As reported by The Real Deal, the initial offering plan calls for a $763 Million sellout without amendments. Sales are expected to begin sometime in the next few months.

Curbed Files on 610 Lex, now 100 East 53rd (Curbed)
Aby Rosen's RFR Plans $763 Million Condo Offering at 100 East 53rd (TRDNY)
100 East 53rd Street (Foster and Partners)
Name Changers: 610 Lex Will Now Be Known As 100 East 53rd (Observer)

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Nearly Sold Out 10 Madison Square West Nearly Clad

10 Madison Square West is nearly clad and nearly, if not totally sold out! It was this time last year that it was reported that 119 of the 125 were listed in contract in an astounding 9 months. At least one of the two $35 Mil penthouses is in contract and the buildings website shows a blank page for "availability". StreetEasy does show one last apartment left, 14D, a corner 8 room apartment with views for $14 Million.

It appears that there is still a fair amount of work to be done on the 7 stories that were added to the old Toy Building, and some work on the commercial space on the bottom floors. But, things are clearly taking shape.

Curbed Files on 10 Madison Square West (Curbed)
No Toys But A Park Nearby (NY Times, May 2013)