Extell buys Hell’s Kitchen parking garage for $29M

Gary Barnett’s Extell Development has purchased a 44,564-square-foot parking garage on West 44th Street for $29 million, according to public records filed with the city today.

The garage, at 332 West 44th Street, was was sold by Central Parking System. The company first put the property on the market amongst a batch of other Midtown parking sites in 2007.

Those sites included 12 West 48th Street; 430 West 37th Street, 159 West 48th Street, 138 East 50th Street and 135 East 47th Street. They were initially marketed by Richard Baxter of Cushman & Wakefield, who has since moved with his New York capital markets team to Jones Lang LaSalle. It was not immediately clear if Baxter still had the listing for all the sites, including 332 West 44th Street, the sale of which closed on Dec. 1.

Combined, the sites could morph into 650,000 in buildable square feet, it was previously reported.

Baxter told the Post in 2007: “The locations are so prime and so central they are almost viable to keep as garages but are also valuable as development sites.”

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The parking garage is still in use by Central Parking System, according to the parking company’s website.

The site purchased by Extell is just two blocks away from the company’s 50-story hotel project at 131-139 West 45th Street, which, Barnett said last year would go ahead despite the company having sold off 11 adjacent commercial property lots in Midtown for approximately $125.16 million, including the hotel site, in July. He told The Real Deal the transaction was primarily a strategy to get an equity partner involved with the hotel project.

The hotel project, between Sixth and Seventh avenues, is slated to have 242 hotel rooms and 171 hotel-condos, according to the original plans presented to a community board in 2007.

Extell bought up scads of Theater District transferable air rights — 9,500 square feet from the St. James Theater at 222 West 45th Street and 54,820 square feet from the Broadhurst Theater at 235 West 44th Street — for the project in the mid-2000s. All told, the site can support a building of 270,000 square feet.

Extell has also been attracting lots of attention lately for One57, its new 90-story glass tower on West 57th Street, which, as The Real Deal previously reported, hit the market in December. Slated to be the tallest residential tower in New York City, penthouses at the property are asking as much as $110 million, according to documents filed with the New York state attorney general, it was previously reported.

Barnett, Baxter and a representative for Central Parking System were not immediately available for comment.