Brooklyn Gets 550 New Homes in Borough’s Tallest Tower
(Bloomberg) -- Brooklyn’s first supertall skyscraper is nearing completion, bringing about 400 rental apartments and 150 condos to one of New York’s most in-demand real estate markets.
The project alongside the landmark Dime Savings Bank in the borough’s downtown -- known as Brooklyn Tower -- has reached its full 1,066-foot (325-meter) height, making it the city’s tallest building outside of Manhattan.
JDS Development Group, the firm leading construction, is preserving the 115-year-old bank, which will be repurposed as retail space. The 93-story hexagonal skyscraper rises beside it, offering sweeping views of Manhattan, the Brooklyn Bridge and Statue of Liberty, straight out to the Atlantic Ocean.
Demand for homes in Brooklyn has soared throughout the pandemic as New Yorkers working remotely fled Manhattan in search of more space and cheaper rents or purchase prices. Record numbers of leases are getting signed, and home sales in the third quarter reached their highest level for any three-month period in 15 years, data from Miller Samuel Inc. and Douglas Elliman Real Estate show.
Downtown, once less desirable because it lacks the quaint charm of other Brooklyn neighborhoods, is also benefiting. There were 153 home sales there in the third quarter, almost triple the rate a year earlier, according to the brokerage Serhant. Of the 303 purchases of newly developed units in the quarter, Downtown had 26%, the largest share in the borough.
“The Downtown Brooklyn new-development market is faring incredibly well,” said Garrett Derderian, director of market intelligence at Serhant. “Currently, the largest new developments are all located within the neighborhood.”
That means buyers and renters have options -- and JDS will face plenty of competition. But given New York’s current housing boom, “the timing seems pretty good,” said Jonathan Miller, president of Miller Samuel. “If we weren’t seeing this tremendous upside in the city’s housing market, then perhaps we could call this ambitious.”
JDS is banking on the Brooklyn Tower’s height to stand out in a sea of new projects. The condo units will start at an elevation of 500 feet, where most nearby penthouses cap, according to the developer.
Condo sales will begin early next year, with leasing starting later. The tower, at 9 DeKalb Ave., will be open for occupancy in late 2022, according to JDS. Pricing details haven’t been released. About 30% of the apartments will be designated as affordable.
The company has projects in Manhattan, such as the Billionaires’ Row supertall at 111 W. 57th St., where a triplex penthouse is listed for $66 million. But with the newest project, “we’re not bringing Manhattan to Brooklyn,” said Michael Stern, chief executive officer of JDS and a native of the borough.
“This will be a building full of life,” Stern said at the Brooklyn Tower’s topping-off event, “not for a select few.”
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