Insights from The Real Deal with Bob Knakal: Looking at NYC land values

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Robert Knakal hosts the first installment of The Real Deal’s insights into the New York real estate marketplace, examining land values in the city (see the video above or click here). In 2009, there were 73 development sites sold in the city, a far cry from the market’s peak in 2006 and 2007 when hundreds of sites were sold, Knakal said. But the numbers so far in 2010 have already exceeded the totals in 2009, he pointed out. “The land market most adversely affected has been the Bronx,” Knakal said. This is because “affordable housing funds coming from the city have all but dried up,” he explained. The Queens submarket was surprising, in that there was a 26 percent increase in land value in 2010 from 2009, while the number of land sales occurring in the borough was down about 25 percent. In Manhattan, the amount of buildable square footage of development sites has nearly tripled so far this year in comparison to last year. Knakal, chairman of Massey Knakal Realty Services, predicted that in the future, that market would see an increase in land value. (Have a comment about The Real Deal’s new Web feature? E-mail Lauren Elkies at

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