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A blog from CityRealty (Links below will take you to the 6sqft site)


Rendering courtesy of MAG Partners and COOKFOX Architects Rendering courtesy of MAG Partners and COOKFOX Architects
Just south of the slow-as-molasses and desperately needed metamorphosis of Penn Station, the area once known as the 'Fur District' is transforming into a mixed-use residential community. As we covered last week, the anticipated opening of Moynihan Station next year and a State-led vision to expand Penn Station one block south has prompted local landowners to reposition underutilized/vacant sites.

The latest example comes in at a through-block parking lot at 241 West 28th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues. Here, a joint venture between MAG Partners, Safanad, Atalaya Capital Management and Qualitas is poised to begin construction on a 479-unit residential rental development where 30 percent of all units will be reserved for low- and middle-income New Yorkers.
241-West-28th-Street-2 241 West 28th Street circa March 2020 via CityRealty
Google Earth image showing location of 241 West 28th Street Google Earth image showing the location of 241 West 28th Street

“As true believers in the future of New York City, we are thrilled to be able to begin construction on this innovative project that will bring mixed-income housing and hundreds of jobs at a critical time for the City.” — MaryAnne Gilmartin, Founder and CEO of MAG Partners

The lot was previously owned by major parking landlord Edison Properties and was acquired by MAG in December 2018 by way of a 99-year ground lease. The property had long been slated for development and a 2011 rezoning allowed for new residential uses to breathe new life into the shrinking Fur District. Fast-forward nearly a decade later, the acquisition of a $173 million loan from Madison Realty Capital has allowed the redevelopment of the district's largest development site to proceed with construction.
“We are very excited to have closed this $173 million loan at a relatively low loan-to-cost with such an esteemed sponsorship group led by MaryAnne Gilmartin of MAG Partners as well as Atalaya and Qualitas,” said Josh Zegen, Co-Founder and Managing Principal of Madison. “This marquee 480-unit multifamily rental building, located within a few blocks of Hudson Yards and other prominent tech tenant expansions on the west side, will be one of the only new multifamily rental projects built in Manhattan in the next few years. We were pleased to fill a void which would customarily be financed by conventional banks, and provide our flexibility, certainty, and conviction.”
According to a press release, the complex is expected to be complete in late 2022. It will provide much needed affordable and market-rate rental apartments to a central Manhattan location within walking to distance to thousands of office tenants in Midtown, the Garment District, Chelsea, and Hudson Yards. The West Chelsea-Hudson Yards area has been witnessing a technology-sector boom with the industry giants of Facebook, Apple, Google, and Amazon all forging ahead with ambitious expansions nearby. Due to the pandemic, Midtown and Midtown South-area retail tenants are among the hardest hit from the work-from-home trend with not enough local residents and tourists to keep businesses afloat. Creating a more mixed-used, less tourism/office-dependent business district will help ensure its vitality during difficult economic times.
241 West 28th Street Street-level rendering of 241 West 28th Street (MAG/COOKFOX)
The project will comprise two 22-story towers, individually fronting West 28th and West 29th streets, and a private courtyard in between. The highly-regarded firm of COOKFOX Architects is the project designer and is known for its work relating to sustainability and occupant wellness. Two released renderings showing details of the facade and ground floor reveal the building will have a planted canopy above the entrance, beatifully-articulated brickwork, and deeply-inset windows with chamfered surrounds to augment views. There will be retail space on the ground floor, apartments on all floors above, and a dash of resident amenities that include lounges, fitness areas, a children's playroom, and a top-floor lounge, swimming pool, and terrace.

COOKFOX's projects often embrace biophilic design, and examples of which can be seen at 550 Vanderbilt Avenue, 150 Charles Street, Google’s expansion in Hudson Square, and a nearby condo development at 39 West 23rd Street which will feature several planted terraces and a landscaped common courtyard.
241-West-28th-Street-3 The common terrace at 150 Charles Street in New York City. Photo: Frank Oudeman; Courtesy of COOKFOX Architects

“We have never met a surface we haven’t wanted to plant green” — Brandon Specketer, COOKFOX

As the Fur District gains traction as a live-work-learn community, the Fashion Institute of Technology is planning a multi-layered glass academic building designed by SHoP Architects across the street. Several doors down, the rental-condo development Maverick Chelsea is set to begin sales in the coming months. Additionally, Flow Chelsea, a new rental built to Passive House standards, opened last year and the nearby Chelsea29 brought dozens of new market-rate and affordable rental units in 2017. At the the corner of 28th and Seventh Avenue, developer GDSNY and its partner Klovern have topped out construction on a sparkling jewel-box office building designed in collboration with Skidmore Owings & Merrill (SOM).
NYC construction projects Maverick Chelsea and office building 28&7 are also under construction on the block (Image credits: HAP Investments and GDSNY/Klovern)

“As a firm, we continue to believe in the future of cities as places where the world's most talented and creative minds congregate - we expect New York City to continue to lead the way on that front and the Chelsea neighborhood to strengthen its attributes as a highly desirable place to live, work and play. We are excited to commence building this project.” — Mark Fischer, Global Head of Real Estate at Qualitas

Local Listings
315-Seventh-Avenue-1 All images of Kheel Tower via Elliman

261-West-28th-Street-1 All images of Onyx Chelsea via Loft Industrie

221-West-29th-Street-1 All images of Chelsea29 via The Marketing Directors

Additional Info About the Building

Luxury Homes in Midtown | Newly Renovated Studio-2BR Homes View Property
Spacious 1 Bedrooms with outdoor space and in-residence w/d View Property