The Real Deal New York

Isaac Chetrit quietly shopping Sixth Avenue development site

Garment District player is weighing offers while pursuing plans for a skyscraper over 70 stories
By Mark Maurer | Twitter_logo_blue copy October 10, 2017 02:25PM

Isaac Chetrit and 981-995 Sixth Avenue (Credit: Google Maps)

Isaac Chetrit and Ray Yadidi are quietly shopping their development site along a prime strip of Sixth Avenue in Midtown’s Garment District, The Real Deal has learned.

The investors’ companies, AB & Sons and Sioni Group, are considering scrapping plans for a mixed-use skyscraper of at least 70 stories on a site with 375,000 buildable square feet, sources said. The assemblage occupies almost a full block along Sixth Avenue between West 36th and 37th streets.

Although the firms haven’t hired a broker to officially market the site, they have received several offers north of $200 million from prospective buyers, sources said. At least one offer was in the $225 million range, sources added. At $200 million, for example, the price per buildable square foot would be $533.

Work on the project has already started. Demolition is underway at 993 Sixth Avenue and construction plans are being drawn, sources said. But if the firms, which are primarily investors and have not tackled a ground-up project of this scale, would sell if they get a good offer, sources said.

Chetrit and Yadidi finalized the assemblage in 2016, with the $26 million purchase of 235,000 square feet of air rights affiliated with the landmarked Haier Building from Himmel & Meringoff Properties. The assemblage also includes the 21-story office building at 989-991 Sixth Avenue and a unfinished hotel project at 993 Sixth Avenue. Chetrit and Yadidi paid $49 million in 2007 for the former and $54.3 million in October for the latter, property records show.

Representatives for AB & Sons and Sioni Group declined to comment.

The firms have yet to file a permit application for a new building, hire an architect or secure construction financing. Earlier this year, they were negotiating with two prominent international architects, Christian de Portzamparc and Jean Nouvel, sources said at the time.

The market for Manhattan development sites appears gaining steam again after a period of decline. Recent deals include Skyline Developers’ $83 million purchase of 12-18 West 55th Street, Sam Chang’s roughly $60 million pending purchase of 140-142 West 24th Street , and Extell Development’s $80 million purchase of 2551-2555 Broadway.

Chetrit, who is a cousin of development mogul Joseph Chetrit, is also redeveloping a former retail building at 1420 Broadway into a new hotel, and planning to open a new rooftop bar at the 24-story building next door at 1412 Broadway by year’s end.