Are developers playing "chicken" with the market?

David Goldsmith

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Staff member

Saved by the court, 200 Amsterdam locks in record price​

Penthouse of once-threatened tower fetches neighborhood-best $5K psf​

After surviving a judge’s order that they be knocked down, the top floors of 200 Amsterdam Avenue are riding high.
A penthouse taking up the full 45th floor has set a record for the Lincoln Square neighborhood, selling for $4,909 per square foot — $19.5 million for 3,937 square feet.

The three-bedroom unit at the SJP Properties condominium offers views of Central Park, the Manhattan skyline and the Hudson River from various vantage points, including the dining room, kitchen and primary bedroom. It has three and a half bathrooms and a 631-square-foot terrace that runs the entire length of the floor.
“What sets these apartments apart from the marketplace is you get the best views of any building in New York City,” said Robin Schneiderman, managing director of Brown Harris Stevens Development Marketing, which represented the sponsor. The unnamed buyer was represented by Nick Gross of Compass.

As of January, the building had recorded $332 million in sales. Over half of the units have sold and closed.

Amenities in the building are spread over three floors of indoor and outdoor space. The spa features a 75-foot saltwater pool, rejuvenation rooms with steam and sauna, a meditation room and treatment room. There is also a fitness center, a golf simulator and a children’s playroom.
The building’s club offers a landscaped terrace, lounge and dining room, billiards table, butler’s bar, library with grand piano, two equipped virtual teleconference rooms and soundproof rehearsal room.

In March 2021, A New York State appellate court reversed a lower court’s ruling that called for developer SJP Properties to remove about 20 floors from the 52-story tower, which was nearly complete. The de Blasio administration sided with the developer to protect the permit-issuing authority of the city’s Department of Buildings.
“Nobody’s ever going to be able to build a building this high again,” said Schneiderman.
 

David Goldsmith

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With Aby Rosen out, Chinese developer slashes Midtown condo prices​

“Not a fire sale,” insists broker at Vanke’s troubled luxury building​

After ending a bad marriage with Aby Rosen, a Chinese developer is scrambling to save its luxury Midtown condo.
Step one: Cut prices. A lot.

And get a new broker.
Sales are on again at Vanke’s “Selene,” the rebranded 63-story tower at the corner of 53rd Street and Lexington Avenue, which has sold just 28 of its 94 apartments since marketing began in 2019.
Compass, which had been sharing sales with the in-house brokerage team at Rosen’s RFR, quit in late 2020 with Vanke and Rosen fighting and the project in disarray. Brown Harris Stevens Development Marketing is now the exclusive broker.
“Unfortunately, the developer’s pricing aspirations combined with Covid and ownership disputes were not aligned with market conditions,” said Compass’ Leonard Steinberg, who led the team previously in charge of sales.

“We feel certain that with the notable pricing revisions, the building will sell out,” he added.
Notable, they are. An amended offering plan filed May 3 shows the 6,800-square-foot penthouse, which was asking $65 million, is now $35 million. The 10th-floor, 6,600-square-foot “garden mansion” with a 5,300-square-foot terrace is now $20 million, down from nearly $30 million.
The discounts extend to smaller units, too. A two-bedroom, two-and-half bath apartment on the 27th floor sold in January for $2,100 per square foot. An identical unit one flight up had fetched $2,675 per square foot in 2019, and a 42nd-floor unit that year sold for a building-best $3,300 per square foot.

The “improved pricing” represents “significant value,” said Robin Schneiderman, a managing director at Brown Harris Stevens Development Marketing. He added, “This is not a fire sale in any way, shape or form.”
Schneiderman’s team has sold two units since the start of April for a total $7.8 million.
One-bedrooms are listed for $1,504 per square foot, or $1.7 million, and two-bedrooms for $2,091 per square foot, or $3.4 million. Lofted units start at $1,448 per square foot, or about $6 million. Full-floor units with three bedrooms are also for sale.
In 2020 Rosen had sued Vanke, which was seeking to remove RFR from the project. Vanke accused Rosen of using litigation to extract a large buyout. Sales were halted, but resumed after Rosen accepted a settlement for his minority stake and left.

The project, at 100 East 53rd Street behind the Seagram building in Midtown East, has some catching up to do. It was built with a $360 million loan from a Chinese bank, but sold only $108 million worth of units before Rosen’s exit.

The building, designed by Foster + Partners, features radiant heated flooring and free-standing tubs. Amenities include a spa, fitness room, swimming pool and private entrance to the Michelin-starred restaurant Le Jardinier, scheduled to reopen soon.

Vanke is among several China-based developers that have encountered obstacles in New York City. Oceanwide just lost control of a Financial District site where it planned a skyscraper, and Anbang suffered cost overruns at the Waldorf Astoria, then was taken over by Chinese authorities.
The city’s condo market has been buoyed by limited supply, according to Schneiderman.
“Inventory levels of newly developed condos is under 6,000 units for the first time since 2018,” he said, predicting that “the market will have less than two years of inventory by year-end.”
 

David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member
2 weeks in a row and we just crossed into Summer selling season.

This week's New Development Report from Sotheby's Kevin Brown Team. unnamed(53).jpg
 

David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member

Developer kills plan for Harlem's 'One45' complex after local opposition​

The developer of a controversial Harlem complex that would have brought 915 new apartments to an underutilized stretch of 145th Street — half of which would have been income restricted — has scuttled the plan ahead of a subcommittee vote on the project Tuesday morning.
The City Council’s Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises voted to remove One45 from the Tuesday's agenda because, “the developer submitted a letter saying they’re withdrawing it,” attorney Angelina Martinez-Rubio told subcommittee members at a public hearing.
Bruce Teitelbaum, with PointsFive developers, didn’t immediately return a request for comment.
From the get-go, the proposed 31-story residential towers slated for a stretch of West 145th Street and Lenox Avenue — which currently houses Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network and several other businesses — had faced fierce political headwinds.
Teitelbaum had envisioned a combination of retail and residential space along the sprawling lot, with a rooftop events space and an “ECO-green Quad.” But the local community board and newly installed Councilmember Kristin Richardson Jordan vehemently opposed the project.
Amid the pushback, the developer made several rounds of last-minute concessions, first bumping up the percentage of subsidized units from 25 percent — required through the city’s Mandatory Inclusionary Housing program — to 40 percent ahead of the presentation to the City Council earlier this month. Finally, on Friday, developers agreed to increase the level of subsidized units again up to 50 percent of the development.
The final proposal included 457 market rate apartments, 91 apartments for two-family households earning around 125 percent of the Area Median Income or AMI, 255 apartments at up to 50 percent AMI, and 112 apartments for the city’s lowest income residents, who earn less than $32,040 for a family of two. Supporters of the project say its withdrawal will likely result in no affordable housing being built at the location.

But Councilmember Richardson Jordan insisted the affordability levels still weren’t in line with the needs of her district. She argued all of the apartments in the new complex should be rent regulated with 57 percent of them set aside for lowest income New Yorkers, in a Medium post. The plot of land would be a prime candidate for the city housing agency's Extremely Low & Low-Income Affordability subsidy program, or ELLA, where 80 percent of the units are for low income tenants and 20 percent are for moderate income households, she said.
“Doing a big project in that space with great affordability is not impossible when we take greed out of the equation,” she said. “If the developers are willing to work with me and the community on something that matches our needs better, I look forward on working with them in the future."

The project had received support from the unions 32BJ and Laborers Local 79. And not all city officials were happy about its demise. Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine, who’d initially opposed the development, lamented the project’s loss, given that Teitelbaum had agreed to increase the number of subsidized apartments up to half, the main thing he’d advocated for.
“The site will indefinitely remain as is — a vacant lot, an abandoned gas station, and a small amount of single story retail. If the owner of the property proceeds with development under as-of-right limits, it will likely become a self-storage facility,” Levine said in a statement. “The desperate need for additional affordable housing in Harlem, and citywide, is getting ever more acute.”
Council spokesperson Mandela Jones said city lawmakers remain committed to creating affordable housing.
“There is a baseline expectation for how applicants can work constructively with the Council, local communities, and the administration to advance projects through the land use process that requires active and meaningful engagement," he said in an emailed statement. "We hope the applicant’s withdrawal of the current proposal, given its challenges and lack of community support, opens an opportunity to chart a successful path forward for affordable housing.”

NB How easy it is for YIMBY journalists to make fools of themselves:


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David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member

One High Line launches sales, says goodbye to the “XI”​

First units at rebranded condo project slated for next summer​

Now you XI it, now you don’t.
Steve Witkoff’s Witkoff Group and Len Blavatnik’s Access Industries have rebranded the beleaguered condo project at 76 11th Avenue in West Chelsea as One High Line, Bloomberg reported. Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group is set to restart sales this week, replacing Douglas Elliman from the troubled property’s development period.

Pricing for units was not disclosed, but the first units are expected to be ready next summer.
Construction on the long-stalled project resumed earlier this spring. A sign posted at the development site listed a revisited completion date of winter 2024.
Witkoff and Access Industries spent $900 million in December to buy the development at a foreclosure sale triggered by HFZ Capital Group’s financial troubles. The 900,000-square-foot development, which includes asset management firm Monroe Capital as a partner, was paused in late 2019 due to HFZ’s troubles.

The project’s initial lender, a subsidiary of The Children’s Investment Fund, scheduled a UCC foreclosure on HFZ’s stake in the project in October, which led to its sale. The hedge fund previously provided HFZ a $1.25 billion construction loan in 2017, including a senior mortgage and a pair of mezzanine loans.
Ziel Feldman’s HFZ has faced numerous foreclosures, lawsuits and liens in recent years. Feldman has largely blamed Nir Meir for the firm’s downturn, claiming Meir used HFZ money on personal expenses and kept him in the dark on financial problems at the XI. Meir’s attorneys have dismissed the allegations.

As for One High Line, the two-tower condo project is slated to include 236 condo units, 137 hotel rooms, 85,000 square feet of retail space and a public plaza. Resident amenities include a golf simulator, a lap pool and a spa with steam and sauna rooms.
The 36- and 26-story buildings are being constructed by Suffolk Construction Corporation, which replaced Omnibuild as the project’s general contractor. Gilles & Boissier is designing the interiors for one building and, while Gabellini Sheppard Associates is handling the other.
Model apartments are expected to be ready for viewing later this year.
 

David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member

One High Line launches sales, says goodbye to the “XI”​

First units at rebranded condo project slated for next summer​

Now you XI it, now you don’t.
Steve Witkoff’s Witkoff Group and Len Blavatnik’s Access Industries have rebranded the beleaguered condo project at 76 11th Avenue in West Chelsea as One High Line, Bloomberg reported. Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group is set to restart sales this week, replacing Douglas Elliman from the troubled property’s development period.

Pricing for units was not disclosed, but the first units are expected to be ready next summer.

Construction on the long-stalled project resumed earlier this spring. A sign posted at the development site listed a revisited completion date of winter 2024.
Witkoff and Access Industries spent $900 million in December to buy the development at a foreclosure sale triggered by HFZ Capital Group’s financial troubles. The 900,000-square-foot development, which includes asset management firm Monroe Capital as a partner, was paused in late 2019 due to HFZ’s troubles.

The project’s initial lender, a subsidiary of The Children’s Investment Fund, scheduled a UCC foreclosure on HFZ’s stake in the project in October, which led to its sale. The hedge fund previously provided HFZ a $1.25 billion construction loan in 2017, including a senior mortgage and a pair of mezzanine loans.

Ziel Feldman’s HFZ has faced numerous foreclosures, lawsuits and liens in recent years. Feldman has largely blamed Nir Meir for the firm’s downturn, claiming Meir used HFZ money on personal expenses and kept him in the dark on financial problems at the XI. Meir’s attorneys have dismissed the allegations.
As for One High Line, the two-tower condo project is slated to include 236 condo units, 137 hotel rooms, 85,000 square feet of retail space and a public plaza. Resident amenities include a golf simulator, a lap pool and a spa with steam and sauna rooms.

The 36- and 26-story buildings are being constructed by Suffolk Construction Corporation, which replaced Omnibuild as the project’s general contractor. Gilles & Boissier is designing the interiors for one building and, while Gabellini Sheppard Associates is handling the other.
Model apartments are expected to be ready for viewing later this year.
 

David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member
Sales at One Wall Street were scheduled to launch 2 years ago and the project to wrap last year. How long can they delay due to there being no market?

FiDi landmark One Wall Street’s new condos will average $3M​

Jul 23, 2018, 10:00am EDT
The 50-story Art Deco bank building is being converted into 566 apartments

The residential conversion of the Financial District’s One Wall Street has been trudging along for quite some time now, but things are finally picking up, and the New York Times has all the new details.

Developer Macklowe Properties is planning to launch sales on the 50-story building’s 566 condos sometime this winter, and apartments here will cost $3 million on average, which is just on par for new developments in the neighborhood, according to the Times. One Wall Street will also have a triplex penthouse, which is expected to ask upwards of $38 million.
We also now know that 304 of 566 apartments will be studios and one-bedrooms, while the rest will be a mix of two, three, and four-bedroom homes. The unit make-up suggests that the developers are targeting young couples or single people living in the neighborhood, which now has an ever-expanding presence of residential development.

Of the total units, 47 will have private terraces. The units will have floors made with engineered wood, a Miele appliance package that includes washers and dryers, and residents here will have the option of choosing glass or lacquer cabinets in the kitchen.
Amenities announced so far include an enclosed swimming pool, and a roof deck. In all, the amenities will be spread out over 100,000 square feet. In addition, One Wall Street will also have a Whole Foods, and additional space for commercial tenants. The SLCE Architects-designed conversion is expected to wrap in 2020.
In 9 months officially on the market (and who knows how many more unofficially) I see 31 units out of 566 in contract (in the hottest New Dev sales market ever?). How long will the sellout period be? Will they change course on this project?
 

David Goldsmith

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Staff member
For those believing no one is building New Dev because of how bad the market was the past few years, take a look at the pipeline of units coming (35,000 units Brooklyn/Queens/Manhattan).
Ranking Brooklyn, Queens condo pipeline hotspots

Nearly half of 22K condo units on tap are coming to 10 neighborhoods​

Brooklyn and Queens have become the new frontier of condo development in New York City, attracting ever more investment in recent years to build increasingly luxurious offerings.

The city’s two most populous boroughs have more than 22,000 condo units in the pipeline between them, nearly 70 percent more than the 13,000 on tap for Manhattan. But where are they going to be?
Hunters Point in Queens dominates the two borough’s pipeline with 1,983 units in the works — 60 percent more than its nearest rival, Flushing, Queens, which has 1,236. Downtown Brooklyn ranks third with 1,200 units on the way, followed by Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant with 1,146 and 948 slated for Long Island City, Queens.
Though Queens neighborhoods took three of the top five spots, Brooklyn had 13 of the top 20 neighborhoods ranked by condo units on tap.
To rank the outer borough neighborhoods with the fattest pipelines, TRD Pro analyzed condo offering plans for Brooklyn and Queens submitted to the state Attorney General’s office from 2016 through March 31 2022, including those that have been approved and declared effective.

While top-ranked Hunters Point has 30 individual projects in the pipeline, nearly half of its total units are packed into a single development — the 802-unit Skyline Tower, which is bigger than the neighborhood’s next seven largest projects combined. The 67-story tower — the tallest building in Queens and tallest condo tower outside of Manhattan — began closings in February 2021 and expects a total sellout of $1.11 billion, the richest of any condo project in either borough. Skyline Tower is developed by Chris Jiashu Xu alongside Risland US Holdings and FSA Capital.
Downtown Brooklyn’s largest development also towers above its neighbors. The 11 Hoyt Condominium’s 481 units make the Tishman Speyer project more than two and a half times the size of its nearest rival, and the second largest development in either borough, after Skyline Tower. Its $826 million sellout is also the second highest.
Those two developments — along with the 408-unit Front & York Condominium in Dumbo — are of different scale entirely from most other projects in the outer borough pipeline. The next-largest project in either borough is the East River Condominium in Astoria, Queens, with 214 units. Only 34 of the 1,335 developments underway have 100 or more units.
Overall, Brooklyn has by far the most condo units on tap with 13,622 — 60 percent more than Queens, which has just 8,516. And its total expected sellout, at more than $18 billion is double Queens’ $8 billion. But Brooklyn’s units are scattered among 1,058 individual projects. For example, No. 3-ranked Bedford-Stuyvesant’s 1,146 units are spread out over more than 100 projects for an average density of about 10 units each.

Meanwhile in Queens, units are concentrated in just 277 projects across the whole borough, making its condo developments more than twice as dense as Brooklyn’s on average. Of the 20 neighborhoods with the highest density of units per project, 14 are in Queens, as are seven of the 10 biggest projects across both boroughs.

Though condo towers may grow taller in Queens, Brooklyn is still the most fertile ground financially for developers, boasting 16 of the top 20 neighborhoods ranked by average expected sellout per unit. Brooklyn Heights tops that list with an average unit price of $3.6 million, followed by the Kings County neighborhoods of Vinegar Hill with $2.5 million, Cobble Hill with $2.4 million, Dumbo with $2.3 million and South Williamsburg with $2.2 million. The first appearance of a Queens neighborhood on that list is Carroll Gardens at No. 6 with an average unit price of $2 million.
 

David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member
This week's New Development Report from Sotheby's Kevin Brown Team.

I think the last sub-26 week was March 2021.
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David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member
This week's New Development Report from Sotheby's Kevin Brown Team. Lowest dollar volume since December 2020. unnamed(59).jpg
 

David Goldsmith

All Powerful Moderator
Staff member
Some homebuyers are backing out of deals as a slowing housing market gives them more room to negotiate. Others are being forced to renege on contracts because higher mortgage rates mean some homes are no longer affordable.
Nationwide, roughly 60,000 home-purchase agreements fell through in June, equal to 14.9% of homes that went under contract that month. That’s the highest percentage on record with the exception of March and April 2020, when the housing market all but ground to a halt due to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. It compares with 12.7% a month earlier and 11.2% a year earlier.
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This is according to a Redfin analysis of MLS data going back through 2017. Please note that homes that fell out of contract during a given month didn’t necessarily go under contract the same month. For example, a home that fell out of contract in June could have gone under contract in May.
“The slowdown in housing-market competition is giving homebuyers room to negotiate, which is one reason more of them are backing out of deals,” said Redfin Deputy Chief Economist Taylor Marr. “Buyers are increasingly keeping rather than waiving inspection and appraisal contingencies. That gives them the flexibility to call the deal off if issues arise during the homebuying process.”
Marr continued: “Rising mortgage rates are also forcing some buyers to cancel home purchases. If rates were at 5% when you made an offer, but reached 5.8% by the time the deal was set to close, you may no longer be able to afford that home or you may no longer qualify for a loan.”
The housing market has cooled in recent weeks as the Federal Reserve has boosted interest rates in an effort to quell inflation. That has given house hunters more freedom to seek concessions from sellers, but higher rates also make housing less affordable. Buyers did get a reprieve this past week, when the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate fell to 5.3% in the largest one-week drop since 2008.
“When mortgage rates shot up to almost 6% in June, we saw a number of buyers back out of deals,” said Lindsay Garcia, a Redfin real estate agent in Miami. “Some had to bow out because they could no longer get a loan due to the jump in rates. Buyers are also more skittish than usual due to economic uncertainty.”

Metro-Level Summary: June 2022​

The table below measures pending sales that fell out of contract as a percentage of overall pending sales, and is sorted from highest to lowest. A metro must have had at least 1,000 pending-home sales in June 2022 to be included.
Search:
U.S. Metro AreaPending Sales that Fell Out of Contract as % of Overall Pending Sales

U.S. Metro AreaPending Sales that Fell Out of Contract as % of Overall Pending Sales
Las Vegas, NV27.2%
Lakeland, FL26.7%
Cape Coral, FL25.7%
Port St. Lucie, FL25.7%
Jacksonville, FL25.3%
New Orleans, LA25.3%
Palm Bay, FL24.9%
Orlando, FL24.5%
Phoenix, AZ24.5%
Crestview, FL23.5%
Deltona, FL23.1%
Tampa, FL23.0%
Houston, TX22.9%
Salt Lake City, UT22.4%
Baton Rouge, LA22.2%
West Palm Beach, FL22.1%
Atlanta, GA22.0%
Fort Lauderdale, FL22.0%
Pensacola, FL21.9%
Miami, FL21.5%
Boise, ID21.5%
Tucson, AZ21.1%
North Port, FL20.9%
Riverside, CA20.9%
San Antonio, TX20.3%
Oklahoma City, OK20.2%
Dallas, TX19.9%
Sacramento, CA19.8%
San Diego, CA19.5%
Fort Worth, TX18.9%
Gary, IN18.8%
Memphis, TN18.3%
Anaheim, CA18.3%
Tulsa, OK18.1%
Tacoma, WA18.0%
Denver, CO18.0%
Albuquerque, NM17.9%
Austin, TX17.9%
Little Rock, AR17.8%
Los Angeles, CA17.7%
Myrtle Beach, SC17.4%
Cleveland, OH17.3%
Louisville, KY17.2%
Chattanooga, TN16.8%
Fayetteville, AR16.7%
Knoxville, TN16.7%
Chicago, IL16.7%
Birmingham, AL16.6%
Portland, OR16.6%
Detroit, MI16.6%
Nashville, TN16.3%
Elgin, IL16.3%
Dayton, OH16.0%
Lake County, IL15.7%
Albany, NY15.3%
Virginia Beach, VA14.9%
Pittsburgh, PA14.8%
New Haven, CT14.8%
Camden, NJ14.7%
Akron, OH14.5%
Grand Rapids, MI14.2%
Charleston, SC14.1%
Indianapolis, IN13.8%
Columbus, OH13.6%
Greenville, SC13.4%
Bridgeport, CT13.3%
Des Moines, IA13.0%
Warren, MI12.7%
Hartford, CT12.5%
Winston-Salem, NC12.5%
Cincinnati, OH12.3%
St. Louis, MO12.2%
Baltimore, MD12.0%
Kansas City, MO11.9%
Worcester, MA11.9%
Charlotte, NC11.6%
Washington, D.C.11.4%
Philadelphia, PA10.9%
Richmond, VA10.8%
Seattle, WA10.5%
Providence, RI10.5%
Fayetteville, NC10.1%
Greensboro, NC10.0%
San Jose, CA9.7%
Boston, MA9.6%
Colorado Springs, CO9.0%
Oakland, CA8.9%
Milwaukee, WI8.9%
Minneapolis, MN8.8%
New Brunswick, NJ8.8%
Frederick, MD8.3%
Portland, ME8.0%
Raleigh, NC7.0%
New York, NY6.8%
Buffalo, NY6.7%
Allentown, PA6.4%
Montgomery County, PA6.0%
Nassau County, NY5.5%
San Francisco, CA5.5%
Omaha, NE5.3%
Rochester, NY4.6%
Newark, NJ2.6%
 

David Goldsmith

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Staff member

Pols launch $10M proxy war against Brooklyn megaproject​

Greenland failed to build Pacific Park’s atrium, but the real fight is about housing​

Brooklyn Nets player Ben Simmons isn’t the only person taking forever to get to work at the Barclays Center.
Developer Greenland Forest City Partners was supposed to construct a sweeping glass atrium outside the arena by this May. The deadline, part of an agreement to build the Pacific Park megaproject in Downtown Brooklyn, came and went.

Now, local activist group BrooklynSpeaks and elected officials are calling on Gov. Kathy Hochul to enforce a $10 million late penalty outlined in the development plan by her agency, Empire State Development.
“Important deadlines are coming due and being missed,” said BrooklynSpeaks member Gib Veconi. “The state doesn’t seem concerned about the consequences.”
Three Assembly members, state Sen. Jabari Brisport and Council member Crystal Hudson wrote to Empire State Development asking the agency to collect on the late fees, lest it lose public confidence in its ability to enforce later deadlines.

Greenland said no one wants an atrium.
“We have heard loud and clear from locals, visitors and public officials that Brooklyn’s public square is a far better civic space for Brooklyn residents, transit riders, and visitors to Barclays Center than the enclosed atrium originally planned for this site,” said a spokesperson.
However, the subtext of the letter and press conference was not the atrium but Pacific Park’s affordable housing, the promise of which was crucial to the megaproject, then called Atlantic Yards, gaining the political approval it needed after being proposed by Forest City Ratner in 2003.
As part of the master development plan, Greenland now has less than three years to deliver nearly 2,500 affordable apartments, even as many of the project’s residential buildings remain little more than blueprints.

Some 877 affordable apartments are planned across three buildings over the Vanderbilt Railyard, but the developer hasn’t even built a platform over the tracks.
Finishing the affordable units in time would be a monumental task, even if contractors were not as busy as ever and construction costs and interest rates were not soaring.
“You’d have to repeal the laws of physics,” Veconi said.

If the developer fails to beat its May 2025 deadline for the affordable units, BrooklynSpeaks says, it will be on the hook for $2,000 per month for every delayed unit, which could add up to $1.75 million per month.

“If we have an MDA [Master Development Agreement] that says the developer must meet a deadline or pay $10 million, and Empire State Development fails to collect, the people can’t trust their government,” said Brisport, whose district includes the Pacific Park development, in a statement. “That’s a very dangerous place to be in.”
Empire State Development, the state’s primary economic development agency, seems inclined to avoid a fight.
“ESD acknowledges the importance of ensuring that this developer honors the commitments it promised to the community,” a spokesperson said. “ESD will work with the developer and the community to expand access to public space and advance the next phases of this critical project.”

Greenland, which aims to relocate the density originally planned for the plaza elsewhere in the site, is making no apologies for its work to date. “Pacific Park Brooklyn is unmatched in its successful delivery of affordable housing, transit and infrastructure improvements, and a world-class arena,” its spokesperson said.
Greenland Forest City Partners was formed as a partnership between Greenland USA and Forest City Realty Trust. In 2018, Brookfield Asset Management acquired Forest City and Greenland upped its stake in the partnership to 95 percent.
Greenland USA’s parent company, Chinese developer Greenland Holdings, faces financial peril at home. Last month, S&P Global Ratings downgraded the firm’s bonds to two levels below the junk status threshold.

Greenland Holdings’ financial troubles shadow the Brooklyn development. While Forest City was the project’s original guarantor, that responsibility likely did not transfer to Brookfield, whose stake is now just 5 percent. Brookfield did not respond to a request for comment.
 
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