The Real Deal New York

Landowners look to double their money in LIC

By Katherine Clarke | October 07, 2013 09:20AM

In a sign of the increasing demand for Long Island City development sites, a large parcel in the Court Square area is set to hit the market this week with a $23.5 million price tag, according to Brookfield Financial, the brokerage tapped to sell the property.

The owner of the site, at 27-21 44th Drive at the corner of Purves Street, paid less than $10 million to assemble it, according to public records.

“Developers have seen the tremendous success of recent projects in the area and we are confident this site will be met with significant remand,” said Brookfield’s Ron Solarz, who is listing the property alongside colleagues Eric Anton and Eric Weinberg.

The parcel, which is currently vacant, is comprised of three adjoining lots and could support a residential project of up to 114,000 square feet, Solarz said.

The owner is listed in public documents as 44 LIC, an entity with an address in Williamsburg. Solarz declined to identify the owners but public records show they assembled the site between 2011 and 2013.

The current owners paid $5.22 million for two Purves Street sites in 2011, public records show, and $4.12 million for the adjoining 44th Drive site this year.

The owners initially had plans to develop the parcel, Solarz said, but after receiving numerous unsolicited offers to buy the site in the last few months, they decided to sell instead.

Long Island City has seen a housing boom since a 2001 rezoning allowed substantial mixed-use developments to be built on 37 blocks in the neighborhood’s central business district. Now that the area has a critical mass of residential buildings, developers traditionally associated with projects in Manhattan and Brooklyn have begun to move into Queens for the first time, The Real Deal previously reported.

The median monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in a doorman building in Long Island City increased from $2,825 in 2011 to $2,890 in 2012, according to data from marketing firm Nancy Packes.

Among the new projects slated for Long Island City’s Court Square area: a 98-unit project developed by L+M Development and a 400-unit apartment complex developed by Property Markets Group.