The Real Deal New York

Whole Foods arrival bolsters rising rents in Gowanus

December 05, 2013 02:45PM

The industrial neighborhood lining the notoriously noxious Gowanus Canal is well on its way to becoming the next Dumbo — an ascension hurried along by the arrival of Whole Foods.

As interest from tenants and property buyers surges, rents are on the rise and posh new commercial outfits such as the Pines restaurant at 284 Third Avenue, which serves a $32 venison sirloin, are setting up shop.

“I’m getting calls from tenants moving out of Dumbo due to $50 per-square-foot rents,” Bob Klein, a broker with Brooklyn-based commercial brokerage Kalmon Dolgin Affiliates, told the Brooklyn Eagle.

Not that the nabe isn’t well on its way to catching up. Commercial space in Gowanus was as cheap as $6 per square foot only 15 years ago, Klein said, and is now in the low $20s for “creative tenants” and as much as $35 per square foot for retail spaces.

Mukeshkumar Patel, Whose Globiwest Firm Operates Hotel Le Bleu On Fourth Avenue, purchased a site that is currently home to little more than weeds at 399 Third Avenue for $1.95 million last year and plans to erect a six-story, 58-room hotel on the site. An LLC associated with Gorilla Coffee shelled out $1.15 million for a building at 498 President Street last year. In comparison, the soon-to-be site of a four-unit residential building at 465 Carroll Street was purchased by the Franzese Group for $700,000 in 2008, according to city records cited by the Brooklyn Eagle. [Brooklyn Eagle]Julie Strickland