Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Eastern and Franklin: Hole=Sold


(coming soon to Eastern and Franklin?)

After four years of inaction at the corner of Eastern Parkway and Franklin, the lot at 341 Eastern Parkway has changed hands for $8,265,000. The new owners of the property are, according to the deed filed with the city yesterday, Eastern Parkway Partners LLC, a corporation that shares an address with BlueJay Management in Nassau County. BlueJay lists 341 Eastern Parkway as a "75,000 square foot residential development with a retail component" among their portfolio of properties "currently owned and managed." An image of what the development might look like (above) is available from IZ Design, the folks who designed the Classon, who list the property among their "current projects." Existing zoning regulations would require than any retail be accessed from Franklin, not Eastern (though the developer could make efforts to change that, as some retail is present on Eastern Parkway to the east). 

As for that sign from Pinnacle Realty, reports are that they represented the new owners in the sale of the property (though the realtor listed, David Junik, has nothing about the property on his own page) and that they are not connected with the infamous slumlord (for those keeping score, this ILFA post was wildly off the mark). 

We've had over 40 small business openings on Franklin Avenue since 2008, but this summer looks to be the summer of the big development. Readers, your thoughts?

31 comments:

  1. We need a bank, a chain drug store (yes, you can hate me for wanting a duane reade, but they're soooooo convenient) and a butcher shop. All are welcome to apply for the retail space.

    Overall, I'm super excited that the ugly hole that was the gateway to our neighborhood will now be filled with a nice, shiny new building.

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  2. PRESERVE. THE. MURALS.

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  3. $8.2M is way more money than any of my contacts thought it was worth.

    ...whoever is developing and financing this must be in this for the long haul.

    I don't know how they are going to make a profit (or even break even) over a 10 yr time span doing a mix of commercial and residential rentals.

    ...the only thing they could make work was short stay apartments (with monthly rents that were way higher than the 'hood presently gets), or a professional building.

    P.S. If you want a mural, get a hammer and pry one off. As long as you replace it with another 4'x 8' sheet of blue painted press board, I'm sure the new owners won't mind.

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  4. IZ Design? That building on Adelphi is one of the ugliest new-construction in Brooklyn.

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  5. You are so cute, crazydancingboy!

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  6. I'm all for the inevitable progress of neighborhood development and definitely pro hole-filling (Ha!) but what I'm not for is more generic, ugly, over scale, "modern" development. Sure a gym, bank, pharmacy, etc would be great. Ideally, I rather see more green space or some sort of vendor market on a low scale but I know that isn't realistic. These buildings - the new ones on Classon, this proposed project, the few scattered around Bedford, Prospect, and St. Marks - are hideous. There is a way to design this type of minimal aesthetic facade with character and taste, like a very few number of the Hello Living buildings off Washington (although inside, the apartments are mostly lacking). This is not the case for Eastern/Franklin. Oh, well. My two cents...

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  7. At this rate, it won't be long before many of the area's present crop of college educated, single residents earning $50k a year, age 27 - 35) are displaced by the next wave of people.

    The new residents will earn more, perhaps be a little older, perhaps have better degrees, and perhaps more inheritance.

    I hope they like living here as much as we did!

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    Replies
    1. Hey MikeF - I wonder what the people you displaced think?

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    2. Whoever they were, I suspect that they displaced someone even lower down the food chain.

      (cue Lion King's "Circle of Life")

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  8. Perhaps they will be displaced by their future selves as they get older and progress in their careers.

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  9. Or replaced by sentient, human-imitating robots who slowly plot world domination

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  10. Eastbloc-
    I hope you are right.

    But even if you are not, I do not fear the change because, in many ways, I am already in the future.

    ...among other things, I've accepted that I have little control over what gets built or who my neighbors become.

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  11. I feel we should do everything possible to meet the developers and convince them that the decent architecture will pay for itself ("better fit the needs of their customers")...It is obvious that these people just don't know the difference, and that having a creation by someone behind "the classon" in this key spot will forever ruin the look and feel of our entire area! ...no need to hire a "star", but definitely an established (and hopefully - talented and progressive) agency is a must. Can we do anything at all before its too late??

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    Replies
    1. We could do several things:

      A. Overturn Property Rights.

      B. Change the tastes and preferences of those with money to buy condos.

      C. Cause the building styles and methods that were popular in the 1920s to again to affordable, and somehow energy efficient.

      Don't worry, you'll get used to whatever happens.

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    2. Hilarious! Well said MikeF. And agreed eastbloc.

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  12. dont fool yourselfs. these are big money people who dont give a fuck about the people who live and work in the neiborhood. its all about the benjis.

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  13. Why do I have a feeling Tony Fisher is behind this deal?

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  14. Why should they give a fuck? They just dropped $8.2m on a hole in the ground. They should do exactly whatever they want, and we're free as birds to gripe about it if we want.

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  15. Anything with Tony Fisher involved = I am pretending to like the people in this hood so I can rip them off!

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  16. Really high end residential in this area goes for about $600 a sq ft.

    Quick math: 75000 sq ft x $600 = $45M available.

    $45M - $8.2M - loan costs - tax and fees - security - real estate commissions = Something like $30M for construction.

    I'm not sure that will be enough, but I wish the developer luck.

    If we assume this thing will continue to be residential, it won't take much an economic downturn for the developer to lose money.

    It seems like the seller (Mr. Mazon) has done the best so far.

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  17. Here's some math to think about...

    75,000 sf residential x $300/sf construction cost (that's high end, so it could even be cheaper) = $22.5MM
    75 condos (1,000 sf each) x $600K sale price (maybe more?!) = $45MM
    Cost of building = $8.3MM
    "Other" costs ~ $2MM
    Profit ~ $12MM
    You can't assume standard bank financing. These are HEAVY investors, they bought the land with all cash. The construction will most likely be financed privately. If the developer splits the profit with the financier (they're likely to be the same company/team), they get ~ $6MM each. That's a lot of profit. Mr Mazon isn't the only one cleaning up.

    It's true, these developers don't give a shit about this neighborhood (neither does Mr Mazon, obviously - keep that in mind next time you shop at his dollar stores). The metaphorical AND literal signs are on the wall. This is an investment deal to make money, being done by investors who live in a different county. The building design will be whatever they want it to be, most likely just enough flash to return the biggest profit margin. It's too late, you can't change anything with this corner. Unless you can rent the commercial space and put in something cool.

    What can you do to preserve your place in this neighborhood? Buy property. It's that simple. Can't do it alone? Then team up. Get smart. Talk to your friends, group together, pool your cash/resources, buy a brownstone, divide up the floors. Your monthly cost will be the same or lower than renting. And nobody can force you to move after that. You can only sell yourself out. It's not as hard as you think to do something like this. Where there's will, there's way. Need a first partner to get the ball rolling? I volunteer. Contact me if you're serious. But talk to your friends first, you might be surprised.

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  18. I always find it heartening to read posts that encourage people to CREATE themselves, rather than just FIND themselves.

    When people accurately realize the degree of power they have over themselves and their surroundings, they tend to view themselves and others in terms broader than "victims" and "oppressors".

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  19. The Real Deal talked to the president of BlueJay. Looks like a bank and a drugstore are both good bets: http://therealdeal.com/blog/2012/04/11/residential-development-with-retail-coming-to-crown-heights/

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  20. The comments here indicate to me that we can say goodbye to the crown heights that attracted us here, and that none of the new residents care in the least about preserving the character and culture of the original neighborhood. Why don't you ask your neighbors what they want to see in that space instead of insisting that it become another shitty chain store with low-wage jobs? We could all benefit from a little more awareness of how privilege is viewed in this neighborhood and how it informs our self-interested visions for what this place could become.

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  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  22. Some of us were "attracted here" but others just ended up here largely by chance.

    Regardless of how we ended up living in this section of CH, we are not unified in the aspects of it we dislike or like.

    Based on who were are and how much we make ("demographics"), businesses guess at what they think a given neighborhood will support, and what will generate the most profit for them. When they are right, the food and services in a given neighborhood changes.

    As a result, any neighborhood that has changing demographics will naturally undergo changes of all kinds.

    Privilege? Absolutely. Privilege happens whenever people with money/power have a preference. We live in a world where we all serve the preferences of those with more power than us.

    Here's some quick examples:

    -If I choose to stay here and have children, I will logically demand changes to the local schools. If there are enough other people with power who want this, the schools will change.

    -If I live here when we are old, I will demand more senior centers to meet my needs. If there are enough other people with power who want this, there will be more senior centers.

    -If I end up in a nursing home, I will likely demand that the social events play the variety of music I liked when I was in high school. If there are enough other people with power who want this, the nursing home will change to reflect my preferences.

    As a result of this same phenomena, neighborhood characteristics are not fixed unless the preferences of the residents with power remains fixed.

    With me?

    Upset?

    Fear not, the neighborhoods that are the destinations of those that being displaced will make changes in response to their arrival. Just as is happening in Crown Heights, those changes will be in exact relation to the level of power they possess.

    Questions?

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