The Real Deal New York

Feldman aims to breathe new life into beat-up UWS buildings

Major renovations underway at the Chatsworth, Astor and Belnord

June 12, 2015 11:55AM

The Chatsworth on the Upper West Side (inset: Ziel Feldman)

The Chatsworth on the Upper West Side (inset: Ziel Feldman)

Ziel Feldman has been quietly amassing a portfolio of large prewar apartment buildings on the Upper West Side — properties he considers to be architectural gems ripe for restoration to their former glory.

Feldman is planning a co-op conversion at the Chatsworth, at 344 West 72nd Street, which he purchased for $150 million, and a conversion of the Astor at 235 West 75th Street, purchased as part of a portfolio. He picked up both buildings in 2013.

“Just, look at this! I’m a builder, and I can’t build this,” Feldman told the New York Daily News, referring to the Chatsworth. “It’s way too expensive. This would cost a fortune to build from scratch nowadays, and you’d have to sell it for some crazy number to make any money.”

At the Belnord, a 226-unit rental that he bought from Extell last year, he may be planning a similar conversion, but remains tight-lipped.

The buildings are some of the last in the neighborhood with such aesthetic grandeur that have not yet been converted to for-sale product.

“I wanted to take these buildings whose glory days have long past and contemporize them,” Feldman said. “To me, that’s more challenging than building something from scratch.”

Feldman is also at work on a massive High Line-adjacent condo project, being designed by Bjarke Ingels. He paid a record-breaking $870 million for the site. [NYDN] — Tess Hofmann