Historically Significant New Development Sites

The changing skyline is one of the most certain features of modern-day New York City, with new buildings breaking ground – or filing permits to break ground – on a daily basis. Where they rise once stood buildings that were important in their day; unfortunately not all of these important buildings can be salvaged, but developers tend to pay homage to the history of their development sites through the new building’s design and name. Here are six upcoming new development projects whose sites or buildings have historic significance.

Project: The Rennie (pictured above)
Address: 2351 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd
Developer: BRP Development Corporation and Abyssian Development Corporation
Architects: GF55 Partners
The Renaissance Ballroom and Casino (The Rennie) was one of Harlem’s most happening jazz spots during the 1920s. It eventually became a dilapidated and (per the developers) unsalvageable abandoned building that is currently being made into an eight story condo with 134 units. Homes will include studios to 3 bedrooms priced between $530,000 – $1,700,000, with 20% set aside for affordable housing between $300,000 and $370,000. The building will also feature a full time attended lobby, rooftop lounge, fitness room, children’s playroom, pet spa, parking, personal storage, and bicycle storage.

Rendering courtesy of The Durst Organization

Project: Plaza Park Tower
Address: 29-37 41st Avenue, Long Island City
Developer: The Durst Organization
Architects: Handel Architects; Interiors by Selldorf Architects
This project will be Queens’ tallest residential tower, rising 710 feet on a plot of land purchased by The Durst Organization for $175M in 2016. The 980,000 SF mixed use building will have 958 homes (nearly 300 of which are earmarked for affordable housing), a half-acre public park, outdoor pool, a 20,000 SF retail gym, co-working area, resident library, demo kitchen, and kids’ playroom. The project includes the development of the landmarked Clock Tower building, formerly the home of Bank of Manhattan. The 50,000 SF Clock Tower building was built in 1927 and will be used as commercial and retail space. Although construction is already underway, expected completion dates and prices have not yet been published.

Project: 432 East 14th Street
Address: 432-438 East 14th Street between 1st Avenue and Avenue A
Developers: Benenson Capital Partners and Mack Real Estate Group
Pretty soon you’ll be able to rent a home where the Peter Stuyvesant Post Office used to stand. The 8 story building (which developers wanted to make 12 stories despite local zoning laws – until neighbors put a stop to their plan) will house 113 rental units, 23 of which will be affordable, as well as a fitness center, courtyard, and landscaped roof deck. Prices will start at $3,350 per month for a studio, nearly $1K over the current median rent for East Village studios. Trader Joe’s recently signed a lease to take over 23,000 SF of retail space in the building.


Project: 108 Leonard
Address: 108 Leonard Street, Tribeca
Developers: Elad Group
Architects: SLCE; Interiors by Jeffrey Beers International
The landmarked McKim, Mead & White building at 108 Leonard Street – known as Tribeca’s clock tower building – was once a criminal court. Sales recently launched at the Elad Group-developed condo, offering 151 homes ranging from one to four bedrooms with prices starting around $1.5M. Building features include a 75-foot lap pool, steam room, sauna, billiards room, rooftop lounge, fitness center, and screening room.

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Image courtesy of ARO.com

Project: ARO
Address: 242 West 53rd Street, Midtown Manhattan
Developers: Algin Management
Architects: CetraRuddy
The Roseland Ballroom closed in April of 2014 and in its place is rising a true skyline changer, The ARO building. Rising 62 stories and comprised of over 500,000 square feet, ARO is slated to open this year and will offer 426 rental studios through three bedrooms, plus one four bedroom home. 40,000 square feet of amenities will include a basketball court, fitness center, indoor and outdoor pool, lounge, and sun deck. Studios are expected to start at $2,500 while some three bedrooms are expected to ask $17,000 per month.

Image courtesy of 67Livingston.com

Project: 67 Livingston
Address: 67 Livingston Street, Brooklyn Heights
Developers: Silverback Development
Architects: HTO Architect; Interiors by CetraRuddy

67 Livingston Street was one of the last sales from the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ portfolio of 30 Brooklyn buildings prior to their move to Warwick, New York. The address is now Brooklyn Heights’ tallest condo, with 22 apartments spread out over 29 stories. 21 of the homes are full floor apartments, and the 22nd is a duplex spanning two full floors. The homes range in size from 1,700 to 3,400 square feet and have direct elevator access as well as balconies, and double or triple exposures. Amenities include a landscaped roof deck, wine cellar, communal front and backyard gardens, children’s playroom, resident’s lounge with catering kitchen, and bicycle storage.

Please contact me if you would like additional information about any of these new development projects.

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