UWS townhouse purchase breaks barrier

$14M is highest price paid for an UWS townhouse not located on Central Park block

In the recent news flurry of record-breaking condominium and co-op sales, attention seemed to be drawn away from another notable purchase that quietly hit public records in late April. The price paid for the Upper West Side townhouse located at 137 West 74th Street doesn’t directly compare to the hefty amount exchanged for these other record-breaking purchases, but it does mark the highest price paid for an Upper West Side townhouse that isn’t located on a Central Park block.

David Kornmeier, a vice president and director at Brown Harris Stevens, brokered the April 18 sale of the townhouse, which is located between Columbus and Amsterdam avenues, for $14.15 million. It beat a 2008 record set by the sale of 333 West 88th Street, a townhouse located between West End Avenue and Riverside Drive, which traded for $11.25 million.

“The biggest numbers were always on park blocks,” Kornmeier said. “Now the Upper West Side is starting to get big uniform sales prices across the board.”

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The Asking Price For The 74th Street townhouse was $16 million and was originally listed by Mike Sieger, an associate broker and senior vice president of the townhouse division at Fenwick Keats Real Estate, in November 2010, according to Streeteasy.com. The owner brought in Kornmeier for the co-exclusive in March 2011, with Kornmeier making the sale, though Sieger told The Real Deal that he negotiated the final price paid. Kornmeier declined to comment on the buyer, but the name listed in the deed is Steven Berzin, who appears to be the former executive vice president of the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

According to the listing, the townhouse has a garden, seven restored fireplaces, an elevator that spans its five stories and white Calcutta marble flooring. Kornmeier said the townhouse was not finished when he began marketing it — the previous owners had gutted the interior to make it a single-family home from a 10-unit building. He said the home has a total of 8,000 above-grade square feet, plus a finished basement. The previous owner envisioned five bedrooms and a maid’s room, but because the home is still not completely finished, Kornmeier said he couldn’t comment on Berzin’s intentions for the number of bedrooms and bathrooms.

As The Real Deal previously reported, the record for a free-standing mansion on the Upper West Side (as opposed to a townhouse) was set in 2007 when Helen LaKelly Hunt, daughter of oil tycoon H.L. Hunt, bought 352 Riverside Drive for $15.75 million.