The Real Deal New York

Development site sales shoot up by more than 100% in Northern Manhattan

Area had $164M worth of development sales during first half of the year
By Eddie Small | July 24, 2018 07:00AM

1274 Fifth Avenue and 1680 Madison Avenue (Credit: Google Maps)

Northern Manhattan had a solid first half of 2018, particularly when it came to development site sales.

The section of the borough above East 96th and West 110th Streets saw $164 million worth of development site sales during the first six months of the year, according to a new report from Ariel Property Advisors. This was a 106 percent increase from the second half of 2017 and a 58 percent increase from the first half of 2017.

Marko Agbaba, a director at Ariel, attributed the uptick to increasing condo values in the neighborhood.

Overall, Northern Manhattan saw 121 deals across 155 properties for about $886 million during the first half of the year. Compared to the second half of 2017, this was a 27 percent decrease in dollar volume, a 1 percent decrease in transaction volume and a 4 percent decrease in property volume.

Compared to the first half of 2017, however, dollar volume increased by 25 percent, property volume increased by 3 percent and transaction volume dropped by 10 percent.

Central Harlem was the most popular Northern Manhattan neighborhood by all three metrics, with about $243 million in sales across 47 deals and 66 properties. Hamilton Heights/West Harlem followed, with about $216 million in sales across 31 deals and 41 properties.

Despite the year-over-year spike in development sales, the best performing asset class in Northern Manhattan was multifamily. Those deals made up 62 percent of the market’s dollar volume and 52 percent of its transaction volume. Development deals made up just 19 percent of dollar volume and 13 percent of transaction volume.

The neighborhood’s multifamily deals were worth about $554 million overall during the first half of the year, a 44 percent drop compared to the second half of 2017 and a 21 percent increase compared to the first half of 2017. Notable deals included Akelius Real Estate Management’s $44.1 million purchase of 1274 Fifth Avenue and the $57 million sale of 1680 Madison Avenue to an East Harlem housing nonprofit and a trio of equity investors.

Large development deals included Ares Management’s sale of 54-62 West 125th Street to the Jay Group for $26.5 million and the $22.5 million sale of a Verizon parking garage site at 620 West 153rd Street to Anbau Enterprises.

Ariel predicted that Northern Manhattan would see a strong second half of 2018 as well, thanks to factors including the pending Inwood rezoning and reverberations from last year’s East Harlem rezoning.