By Barbra Murray, Contributing Writer
New York–The early-20th-century building at 250 West St. in Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood is in the midst of being reborn as a luxury condominium development. In an historic renovation endeavor, El-Ad Group is transforming the property, while maintaining its architectural significance, into 111 residences.
Developed in 1906, the 11-story brick building that will become home to the upscale condominiums sits in the heart of Tribeca, just across from the newly opened piers 25 and 26 at Hudson River Park. El-Ad took the asset off the hands of next-door neighbor Citigroup in June 2006, acquiring what was an office building at the time for $142 million in a short-term sale-leaseback deal.
GNA Architects is behind the design of the historic conversion endeavor, which will ultimately result in offerings ranging from loft-style residences to four-bedroom units, not to mention a one-of-a-kind 7,000 square-foot penthouse. El-Ad is not skimping on amenities. In addition to a 61-foot swimming pool, the property will feature a private library adjoining the lobby, a 5,000 square-foot terrace and a premier fitness facility. There will even be accommodations for the little ones, as a children’s playroom is part of the package.
While the Manhattan apartment market has come back with somewhat of a vengeance–a surge in white-collar jobs is buoying conditions and will likely drive vacancies down to 3.3 percent this year, as per a Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services report–the state of the condominium market is not quite as rosy.
“The trend we’re seeing in Manhattan is, transactions have been pretty flat since mid-2009,” Quinn Eddins, director of research with residential data and analytics firm Radar Logic, tells MHN. “There hasn’t been a lot of growth. After the bottom fell out of sales activity in 2008, it bounced around at historically low levels in 2009, but since fall 2009, it’s been pretty much at the same level. The increase in mid-2009 brought us back to a stable level–back but not all the way back to pre-bust levels. The trend, in broad strokes, is the market has been flat since late 2009 and we expect it to stay that way. We don’t know when we’ll go back to the heyday of 2007 and early 2008.”
The Tribeca neighborhood, however, may have a bit of an edge. “From a quantitative perspective, based on transactions, it’s interesting that neighborhoods in Manhattan that are performing the best are the ones that are the most expensive, on a per-square-foot basis,” Eddins said. “That includes the Soho/Tribeca submarket, the Midtown/Clinton neighborhood, Chelsea/West Village and the East Village/Lower West Side.”
El-Ad expects to welcome the first residents to 250 West St. in fall 2012.