Condo conversion planned for four Upper West Side walk-ups

By James Kelly | March 07, 2008 03:33PM

A foreign buyer has purchased four walk-up apartment buildings at 176-182 West 82nd Street for $19 million and plans to convert the apartments to family-sized condos, which the developer says are in short supply on the Upper West Side. 

The five-story buildings, located between Columbus and Amsterdam avenues, have a combined 30,000 square feet. They went on the market last spring for an asking price of $16.5 million. At least six prospective buyers saw the properties before a deal was struck, said Shay Zach, associate broker and managing partner at Itzhaki Properties.

Zach represented the seller, WexTrust Capital LLC, a private equity firm that had purchased the buildings for $12.28 million in February of last year and also planned a condo conversion. Another managing partner at Itzhaki, Barry Farchi, represented the buyer, listed only as Navistone Amsterdam LLC on the deed.

The buyer plans to knock down walls in the buildings to combine smaller residential units into three- or four-bedroom units.

“If you look at the market [on the Upper West Side], most units are one- or two-bedrooms, not many are three- or four-bedrooms,” Zach said. “But I think the demand for bigger units exists.”

The buyer intends to combine units to create apartments that range from 1,500 to 2,000 square feet.

The Romanesque Revival-style buildings are part of the Upper West Side/Central Park West Historic District. They were designed by Gilbert A. Schellenger and built in 1892-1893.

Zach said that the buyer was confident he would receive permission from the Landmark Preservation Commission to alter the buildings.

“The LPC really cares about the preservation of the facade,” he said, adding that the buyer is “probably going to restore the facade to its original position.”