Douglaston Development Unveils Political Banner at Brooklyn Construction Site

By Erika Schnitzer, Associate EditorBrooklyn, N.Y.–Hours before last week’s vice presidential debate, New York-based Douglaston Development hoisted a 100-ft.-by-28-ft. banner, proclaiming “Sarah Palin, Live Here, See Wall Street,” from the construction site of its new condominium, The Edge. The banner refers to Palin’s recent remarks about the proximity of Russia to Alaska.“It’s not driving people to look for apartments, but it is giving recognition to the project,” notes Jeffrey Levine, chairman of Douglaston Development, of his company’s unique marketing idea. Another tool the company employs is sending its sales team to make house calls for prospective buyers. “In addition to a well-appointed sales office, we are capable of bringing out information to the home of the prospective buyer to get a personalized sales pitch in the comfort of their own home,” Levine tells MHN.The Edge, a mixed-use community designed for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver certification—and the largest residential community in Brooklyn striving for LEED certification—is part of the waterfront revitalization of Brooklyn’s Williamsburg.The development, which will be built in two phases, will comprise three residential towers with a total of 1,085 luxury condos, over 60,000 sq. ft. of retail—which Douglaston hopes will include resident services such as a bank, grocery and coffee shop–700 spots for below-grade parking, and 1.75 acres of open space that will include a public park with a promenade and piers. In addition, the site will include an affordable housing component, as required by the Williamsburg rezoning laws.The development’s green features include the use Energy Star fixtures, FSC-certified woods, low-E glass, and low-VOC paints, carpets and wall coverings. Recycled and locally produced materials are being used throughout construction, and onsite Zipcars are available to all residents. The development is within walking distance of the subway, which connects to all trains in Manhattan.Designed by The Stephen B. Jacobs Group with interiors by Andi Pepper, phase one of the project—now under construction and expected to be ready for occupancy in the summer of 2009—includes the first two towers and will offer 575 residences.The 30-story, 370-unit South Edge will offer studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom residences, ranging in size from 490 to 2,075 sq. ft. The 15-story, 205-unit North Edge will offer 205 residences, ranging in size from 570 to 2,275 sq. ft. Pricing begins at $420,000.The development will feature 40,000 sq. ft. of amenity space with a pool, outdoor terrace overlooking Manhattan, two fully equipped fitness centers, a yoga studio and a spa with a whirlpool, sauna, Turkish steam bath and private treatment rooms. In addition, The Edge offers two media rooms, a video game console room with a golf simulator, a children’s playroom and a resident lounge with demonstration kitchens.In the six months since sales began, 20 percent of phase one has been sold. “In light of current market conditions, that’s a good statement as to the quality of the product,” Levine asserts, remaining confident that the industry will turn itself around. “You don’t have to have a very long memory to go back a few years and remember how good things were. We should keep that in mind when looking forward, because we are in the process of getting ourselves back on track.”