INVESTOR SEES TREASURE ON SI SHORE

By Linda O’Flanagan

 

Madison Realty Capital has taken over a distressed Staten Island condominiumn with plans to finish the building work and market it as a rental.

Joshua Zegen, co-founder and managing member of the institutionally backed investment firm, said he believes the area around the St George building is in line for a renaissance.

“This submarket has become an exciting part of the New York City waterfront, but remains somewhat overlooked by investors,” Zegen explained.

“We identified a great opportunity to access this well-located property at an attractive basis through the senior debt, and now we’re putting the finishing touches on construction and marketing it as a rental.

“Our vertically integrated platform, which incorporates construction management, asset management, and property management in-house, will enable us to seamlessly execute our strategy for maximizing value. Given the local fundamentals and the high quality of these units, we expect the leasing effort to yield strong results.”

Several development plans are already underway in the area. The city has issued a Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) for the waterfront parcels near the St. George Ferry Terminal now being used for parking.

Called a “potential game-changer” for Staten Island, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has said the development of the 6.7 acre site will be a catalyst for the further revitalization of the North Shore,
as well as the entire Island.

Talks among the local community have envisioned everything from a glamourous shopping mall, to hotels and theaters, as well as shops and apartments.

The Homeport, a 35-acre decommissioned U.S. Naval Base in Staten Island, is already being re-developed as a mixed-use residential community under the New Stapleton Waterfront Development Plan.

And lronstate Development Company is transforming 7-acres into rental housing and retail stores with the city throwing in another $33 million for road improvements and a new waterfront esplanade.

The Marketing Directors is currently selling homes in The Pointe, a new collection of one- and two-bedroom condos at 155 Bay Street. Managing director Jacquline Urgo said, “Coupled with our attractive prices and a location that’s a Manhattan commuter’s dream, we believe this exciting residential offering will appeal to everyone from current renters moving up to home ownership to empty nesters looking to scale down to a more manageable, maintenance-free lifestyle. ”

MRC plans to finish work on 224 Richmond Terrace, known officially as The View, and launch its leasing effort soon, with Casandra Properties handling leasing for both the residential and retail portions of the property.
The original owner planned it as a condo, but defaulted on its construction financing in 2009, after which the original lender filed a foreclosure action.

MRC previously purchased the non-performing first mortgage for $8.4 million (approximately 66% of the unpaid principal balance and 52% of the payoff balance including interest) from Bank of New York Mellon, and has now taken title by completing foreclosure proceedings.

Construction is substantially complete, according to Zegen, with only some interior installations and cosmetic detailing to be done.
The building rises 11 stories above the waterfront and features unobstructed views of the Manhattan skyline and the Statue of Liberty.

In addition to the 40 apartments, The View also offers approximately 5,000 s/f of retail space and a community cepter, and benefits from a 15-year 421a tax abatement.

T’he high-quality units were originally intended for sale to Financial District commuters.

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