NYC Real Estate News

Thu, 04/11/2024 - 05:06
This week’s properties on Central Park South, in West Chelsea and Riverdale.
Wed, 04/10/2024 - 16:45
Apartment bedrooms are required to have windows that open to the outside under NYC building codes.
Wed, 04/10/2024 - 16:18

The Department of Housing Preservation and Development and the New York Public Library announced plans to transform the Grand Concourse branch into a state-of-the-art library with affordable housing on top. This week the city kicked off the community engagement process for the project, which falls under Mayor Eric Adams’ “24 in 24” plan to advance [...]

The post NYC to redevelop Grand Concourse library with 100% affordable housing first appeared on 6sqft.

Wed, 04/10/2024 - 16:02

Airlines are seeking another year of voluntary flight reductions at some of the nation’s most congested airports as the industry struggles with an ongoing shortage of air traffic controllers. 

If the request is granted by federal aviation regulators, airlines could reduce flights at all three major New York City airports as well as Ronald Reagan Washington National until October 2025 without risk of losing their valuable airport flight slots. Currently, the program is scheduled to expire this October.

Airlines for America, the trade group for major carriers, made the request in a letter to the U.S. Transportation Department and the Federal Aviation Administration.

The flight reductions, first put in place in May 2023, followed a dramatic upswing in delays and cancellations as traffic surged back after the pandemic at the same time the U.S. was hit by a wave of controller retirements. Air traffic in the northeast is particularly critical because disruptions there can easily cause a domino effect across the entire U.S. airspace.

“We still have a shortage of air traffic controllers, so it’s still an incredibly challenging environment,” Peter Carter, Delta Air Lines executive vice president of external affairs, said on a conference call Wednesday. “Absent the waivers, I think we’d have some real challenges as an industry in New York.”

Delta, American Airlines Group, United Airlines Holdings and JetBlue Airways are among carriers affected by the decision.

While some progress was made in increasing the FAA workforce last year, current and future staffing levels are “neither adequate to give consumers the travel experience they deserve, nor are they able to maximize the efficiency of the New York City airspace,” A4A, as the group is known, said in the letter. “Inadequate staffing will remain an immediate critical impediment” for the area during the 2024 winter season and 2025 summer season, the trade group said.

The flight limits helped improve on-time arrivals and departures at the participating airports in the fourth quarter, A4A said, as well as the percentage of flights completed.

Carriers have in some cases maintained capacity despite operating a lower volume of flights by using larger planes. As part of the plan, the FAA has been waiving the requirement for carriers to use the flight slots or lose them.

Wed, 04/10/2024 - 16:02

The City Council on Thursday is expected to approve a major development in Willets Point that will pave the way for a 25,000-seat soccer stadium and 1,400 affordable apartments on the Queens peninsula formerly full of auto shops.

The project, led by a joint venture of the Related Cos. and Sterling Equities, will construct a new stadium next to Citi Field for Major League Soccer’s New York City Football Club. The new housing comes on top of an initial phase of 1,100 apartments, which the city began constructing in December.

Thursday’s vote will be a culmination of years of efforts to redevelop Willets Point, once a heavily polluted area famously dubbed the “Valley of Ashes” in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Although initial attempts sputtered under Michael Bloomberg, the latest plans, which originated under Bill de Blasio and were finalized under Mayor Eric Adams, have met little resistance and enjoy the support of local City Councilman Francisco Moya — a noted soccer fan.

The $780 million soccer stadium will be privately financed, although the city will miss out on some $516 million in taxes over the team’s 49-year lease since it chose to lease the land to the developers rather than sell it, according to an analysis last year by the Independent Budget Office. The city has said it will charge the developers $500,000 in rent that will eventually escalate to $4 million.

The stadium is expected to open by early 2027.

The 17-acre project expected to pass on Thursday, known as Willets Point Phase II, also comes with a 250-room hotel, 80,000 square feet of retail and about 3 acres of open space. A 650-seat public school will be built as part of the first phase of construction.

“This is a project that will transform an area that was underutilized and contaminated and will turn it into Queens’ next great neighborhood,” said Related executive Frank Monterisi at a City Council hearing last month.

The site sits on the east side of the New York Mets’ stadium, Citi Field; to the ballpark’s west is the 50-acre parking lot that Mets owner Steve Cohen wants to redevelop into a casino complex.

Mayor Eric Adams and Moya plan to celebrate outside City Hall on Thursday following the vote. They will be joined by labor unions, which support the rezoning thanks to its promise of creating some 14,000 construction jobs.

The entire project will generate some $6 billion in economic impact over 30 years, according to the city’s Economic Development Corporation, which is spearheading it. It amounts to one of the most significant developments to be passed under Adams, who is hoping to build more housing by relaxing zoning laws through his City of Yes plan.

Wed, 04/10/2024 - 15:52

Taxpayer contributions to New York City and state pensions would rise by more than $4 billion if Gov. Kathy Hochul yields to a legislative proposal that would sweeten benefits for some public employees.

Lawmakers and unions argue that pension changes pushed through by former Gov. Andrew Cuomo 12 years ago have made it more difficult to recruit public employees, contributing to a labor shortage and hurting services. The legislation, under consideration as part of the state budget, would benefit city and state employees affected by the overhaul but also put more of a financial burden on governments — facing $5 billion deficits — to fund the measure.

New York’s public unions and opponents called the 2012 reform — touted by Cuomo as a win for taxpayers and municipalities — an attack on the middle class on behalf of the wealthy.

Public employee pensions are calculated primarily on years of service and final average salary. Cuomo raised the retirement age for most city and state employees to 63 from 62, increased employee contributions and extended the average salary for computation to the last five years, for employees hired after April 1, 2012 — a group that makes up about half of the city and state workforce.

The new law calls for calculating pensions based on the average of the final three years, retroactively increasing pension payouts to the cohort and boosting benefits for not-yet-hired employees.

“We want investments in workers,” said the bill’s sponsor, state Sen. Robert Jackson, a Democrat and chair of the Senate’s Civil Service and Pensions Committee.

Supporters of the proposal, backed by unions, said New York should stop wasting money on overtime. The city and state spent about $3.5 billion combined on overtime, according to recent comptrollers reports.

“Why should we have to pay overtime when we should hire more employees and use an incentive for employees to join state service?” Jackson asked. 

New York City’s payments to the five city pensions for civil employees, teachers, police officers, firefighters and non-teaching school workers, would rise by $2.2 billion, based on the current value of future contributions, according to the legislation. The city expects to spend $9.4 billion on pensions this fiscal year ending June 30.

Payments to the state and local employees’ retirement system would rise by $1.5 billion. The state teachers’ pension didn’t disclose the present value of future contribution increases, but the Empire Center for Public Policy, a fiscally conservative think tank, estimated the cost to taxpayers at $667 million.

“Gov. Hochul’s executive budget makes record-setting investments in New York’s future while ensuring the state remains on a stable long-term fiscal trajectory, and she is working with the Legislature to craft a final budget that achieves these goals,” said Avi Small, a spokesperson for Hochul, in an email. Small didn’t address the pension proposal directly.

Budget hawks say the state and city, which are facing budget gaps of $5.2 billion and $5 billion, respectively, in fiscal 2026 can’t afford the tab.

“This is raw political power being used to squeeze billions from the public fisc,” said Ken Girardin, director of research at the Empire Center. “All you need is for the legislature and the governor to do the wrong thing once and that cost is permanently stuck on New Yorkers who haven’t even been born yet.”

Girardin said there’s no evidence that boosting pension payments will make it easier to recruit public employees.

The number of state employees, excluding state and city universities and state department of corrections workers, has increased by about 7,200 from the end of December 2021 to the last quarter of 2023, according to the Empire Center, which cited data from the state comptroller. The number of current state employees, 115,879, is still down more than 2,000 since before the pandemic. The state had 11,620 open positions in late December, according to Hochul’s executive budget.

Labor shortages are a widespread economic problem as baby boomers retire and workers seek higher pay and more flexible job arrangements, Girardin said.

In the aftermath of the Great Recession, states reduced benefits and increased employee contributions for new workers to shore up pensions and avoid tax increases and layoffs. Since 2009, New York was among the 39 states that increased employee contribution rates at one or more of their pension plans, and 40 states that reduced pension benefits, according to the National Association of State Retirement Administrators.

The latest pension reform “is a big test” for Hochul, a Democrat, said Girardin, adding that even if it is passed, “the unions won’t stop bellyaching.”

Wed, 04/10/2024 - 15:42

The New York Yankees are the most valuable team in Major League Baseball, and it's not all that close. The Steinbrenner family's organization is valued at $7.55 billion, about $2 billion more than the next most valuable team, per Forbes.

That financial dominance goes beyond just the front office. The team is expected to generate $606 million in economic impact for the city over the course of the 2024 regular season, according to a new report from the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

The Mets, on the other hand, are expected to generate $353 million through the regular season, about 42% less than their cross-city counterpart. 

Those figures include the sale of tickets, merchandise and concessions; transportation costs; lodging for out-of-town visitors and their spending at local restaurants; and employee salaries.

The EDC's analysis used current ticket pricing for the 2024 season but relied on historical averages to determine attendance projections. Higher ticket prices and higher expected attendance for Yankees' home games contributed to the team's economic impact dominance.

The forecast for both teams is up from last year. Going into the 2023 season, Yankees home games were projected to inject $579 million into the local economy, compared to $338 million for the Mets. "The higher impacts this year are being driven a little by inflation and a little by higher ticket prices," said Melissa Pumphrey, the EDC’s senior vice president of economic research & policy.

At Citi Field, the median ticket price rose about $5 year-over-year, the EDC found. "That's a little more than what we'd expect if we're just looking at the inflation rate, so some of that may have to do with just how the Mets did last year," Pumphrey said. The team finished 75–87 last year.

Meanwhile, the cost of admission at Yankee Stadium did not change.

In a written statement accompanying the report, Mayor Eric Adams wrote, "with baseball back, the Yankees and Mets will not only provide New York City with some of the most exciting games of the summer, but will support local businesses, create jobs, and generate nearly a billion dollars in economic impact — and hopefully, we’ll add even more to that with deep playoff runs."

The two teams' combined $960 million estimate does not include potential postseason berths, which can generate tens of millions of dollars on their own. In 2022, when the Yankees made it to the American League Championship Series and played five home games, for example, the organization saw $72.6 million in postseason collections from ticket and suit sales.

Wed, 04/10/2024 - 15:13

Astoria has become a favorite for home buyers seeking urban townhouse living and a (relatively) affordable chance to expand beyond cramped quarters while staying in a vibrant New York City neighborhood. This multi-family townhouse at 23-23 33rd Road, asking $1,399,000, checks all the boxes. Built in 1945, this three-floor brick home offers incredible flexibility: Currently [...]

The post This $1.4M Astoria home is all about flexible, fabulous, and fun townhouse living first appeared on 6sqft.

Wed, 04/10/2024 - 14:15

An office tower in Midtown is luring tenants with food and lush outdoor space. SL Green this week unveiled plans for a steakhouse by Chef Daniel Boulud at One Madison Avenue, an adaptive-reuse commercial building facing Madison Square Park. In addition to La Tête d’Or by Daniel, the first-ever steakhouse from the French chef, the [...]

The post One Madison Avenue unveils lush rooftop garden and stylish steakhouse by Daniel Boulud first appeared on 6sqft.

Wed, 04/10/2024 - 13:39

A large industrial site in leafy Boerum Hill that the city recently rezoned for housing will be developed by busy builder Yitzchok Katz.

Property records made public Wednesday identify Katz, the chief executive of Goose Property Management, as the buyer of the three-lot site occupying much of the block framed by Bergen and Wyckoff streets, and Third Avenue and Nevins Street.

Katz, who does not appear to have been linked previously to the site despite its publicized journey through the city’s rezoning process, paid $39.7 million for the parcel, which for decades has been home to a film-products factory.

The seller of the site, Ulano, closed on the deal April 1, according to the deed that appeared in the city register Wednesday.

Katz, who could not be reached through Goose by press time, is cleared to develop a four-building development encompassing 300 units, 90 of which will be affordable, or offered at reduced rents for those in certain income bands, according to the zoning resolution passed by the City Council in fall 2022.

It’s not clear if Katz was in talks with Ulano at that point about how the site could be developed, but he did enter into a contract to buy the property back in July, records show.

Katz's property, which will use the address 280 Bergen St., is also approved for 9,600 square feet of storefronts and a 10,000-square-foot community center, the resolution says.

The developer has applied for demolition permits with the Department of Buildings, though they have yet to be fully approved, records show.

The site, which is near both Barclays Center and the Gowanus Canal, consists of three parcels, the largest of which is an L-shaped, low-slung brick building from the 1940s at 268 Bergen St. that clocks in at 49,000 square feet, records show. Two much-smaller sites face Wyckoff Street.

Founded in the 1920s by Russian immigrant Joseph Ulano, Ulano has manufactured a range of chemical products through the years, including hand sanitizer, though it did not always have a warm relationship with its neighbors. 

In the late 1980s, the company came under fire for allegedly being a polluter, a problem later rectified with an incinerator, while the noise from delivery trucks drew ire more recently. An international conglomerate with locations in Singapore, Germany and India has owned Ulano since 1999, according to its website. Efforts to reach the company, which appears to have moved out of the property a year ago, were unsuccessful.

Extremely active in Brooklyn and Queens, though relatively new to the development scene and with a low-key presence, Katz appears to be juggling several major projects at once. He’s developing two residential towers nearby, a 23-story offering at 370 Livingston St. and a 15-story version at next-door 362 Livingston; an even taller tower with 45 stories is underway at 570 Fulton St.

Katz, who also does business by way of the shell company Developing NY State, also recently opened the doors to 2-24 26th Ave., a 137-unit rental project in Astoria, Queens, where market-rate studios start at around $2,600 a month.