Robert De Niro’s Wildflower Studios closes on $72M Astoria site

Construction is expected to start this summer

New York /
Feb.February 10, 2020 01:04 PM
Robert De Niro and a rendering of Wildflower Studios (Credit: Getty Images and BIG)

Robert De Niro and a rendering of Wildflower Studios (Credit: Getty Images and BIG)

Robert De Niro’s new film production studio now has its development site in hand.

Wildflower Studios closed on its purchase of a 5.25-acre waterfront parcel in Queens for about $71.6 million from piano-maker Steinway.

It plans to start building foundations for a massive film production facility this summer, and the first movies are expected to be shot at the studio about two years later, said developer Adam Gordon, president of Wildflower LTD.

“Building a design-driven campus in New York City has been a longtime dream,” Gordon said.

Ares Commercial Real Estate Management provided $56.5 million in financing for the land. The firm declined to comment. The project’s total costs are around $400 million, Gordon said.

The deal involves slightly less than half of the Astoria site that Steinway has owned for about 150 years. Steinway will hold on to 5.75 acres, Gordon said.

Wildflower intends to knock down several remaining buildings on the property, which a Steinway representative said were not involved in piano manufacturing. Jonathan Sharaf brokered the deal.

The Bjarke Ingels Group is designing the 650,000-square-foot studio. De Niro is also partnering with his son, Douglas Elliman broker Raphael De Niro, and producer Jane Rosenthal on the project.

The studio will be a few blocks down the road from another proposed film studio. Broadway Stages filed plans last month to convert a building currently used to make food at 45-10 19th Avenue.

Film production studio construction has boomed in New York City in recent years, buoyed by the state’s $420 million annual tax credit — one of the most generous in the nation. But not everyone is a fan of the tax: Subsidy watchdogs have for years decried it as a needless giveaway, and last week a Republican senator in the Democratic-controlled state legislature called to end the credit and repurpose the money to stop residents from fleeing the state.

But the tax credit, which is not permanent but has been repeatedly renewed and enlarged, is not seen as going away any time soon. Last month Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed to extend the credit, with a few changes, in the state budget due April 1. A year ago he briefly threatened to end it, but that was seen as a rebuke to Queens elected officials who opposed the Amazon project that was canceled Feb. 14, 2019.

Write to Mary Diduch at [email protected]


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Clockwise from top left: 162 West 13th Street, 325 Avenue Y in Brooklyn, 1281 Viele Avenue in the Bronx (Credit: Google Maps)

Here’s what the $10M-$30M NYC investment sales market looked like last week

Here’s what the $10M-$30M NYC investment sales market looked like last week
Stockbridge managing director Terry Fancher (Photos via Stockbridge)

Stockbridge and South Korean firm strike $2B warehouse deal

Stockbridge and South Korean firm strike $2B warehouse deal
B6's Paul Massey and Tom Gammino (Photos via B6; Jll)

Tom Gammino joins Paul Massey’s B6

Tom Gammino joins Paul Massey’s B6
From left: Rybak Development's Sergey Rybak, 126 East 86th Street, 128 East 125th Street, Maddd Equities' Jorge Madruga (Rybak, Google Maps; Getty)

Manhattan investment sales show vital signs again

Manhattan investment sales show vital signs again
48-00 Grand Avenue in Maspeth and Prologis CEO Hamid Moghadam (Google Maps; Prologis)

Prologis picks up Maspeth parcel for $51M

Prologis picks up Maspeth parcel for $51M
Clockwise from left: 205 Brook Avenue in the Bronx, 219 Jay Street in Brooklyn, 377 Johnson Avenue in Bushwick and 54-25 58th Street in Maspeth (Google Maps; JLL)

Mid-market investment sales record strong week

Mid-market investment sales record strong week
454 East 148th Street and 5252 Kings Highway (Google Maps; Compass)

Bulk co-op buy in the Bronx tops mid-market investment sales

Bulk co-op buy in the Bronx tops mid-market investment sales
A rendering of 153-10 88th Avenue in Jamaica (Photo via Zara Realty)

Zara Realty plans 218K-sf Jamaica development

Zara Realty plans 218K-sf Jamaica development
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...