New York condos shrink as banks play it safe

From left: L+M Development Partners CEO Ron Moelis, Columbia Hicks and PS 90

Manhattan condominium projects are dropping dramatically in size, as banks remain reluctant to finance megaprojects and developers have difficulty finding sites for large-scale construction, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“You’re going to be very, very hard pressed to build a condo in this city for a number of years that has more than 100 units,” Ron Moelis, chairman and CEO of L+M Development Partners, which built the 1,000-unit Northside Piers in Williamsburg, told the Journal.

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

According to data compiled by, new condo projects hitting the market in 2005 and 2006 had an average of 83 units per building. That number has decreased to just 34 units in 2011.

“I don’t think you’re going to see 500-unit condominium developments,” said Stephen Kliegerman, president of Halstead Property Development Marketing. “But we’re seeing lots of small projects… coming back to market and selling very well right now.”

As The Real Deal previously reported, developers are focusing on
smaller boutique projects
, Moelis agreed, with around a dozen such projects breaking ground or launching sales in coming months. Moelis is currently working on PS 90, a 75-unit mixed-income condo project in Harlem and Columbia Hicks, a 42-unit condo and 94-unit rental project on the Brooklyn waterfront.

Recommended For You