Blackstone, Ivanhoe Cambridge close on $5.3B Stuy Town deal

Sale marks largest single-asset real estate deal in nine years

From left: Jonathan Gray, Daniel Fournier, Alicia Glen and Doug Harmon
From left: Jonathan Gray, Daniel Fournier, Alicia Glen and Doug Harmon

UPDATED, Dec. 18, 3:52 p.m.: As of today, Manhattan’s largest apartment complex has new owners. According to sources, the Blackstone Group and Ivanhoe Cambridge closed on the $5.3 billion purchase of Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village, wrapping up the biggest single-asset real estate deal since the same complex sold for $5.4 billion in 2006.

The buyers had signed the contracts in October, and the closing was only a matter of time after they secured a $2.7 billion acquisition loan from mortgage giant Fannie Mae earlier this month. A lawsuit by several CMBS lenders under the old ownership against the seller, CWCapital, briefly threatened to delay the deal. But the plaintiffs withdrew their suit this week, according to Real Estate Weekly, removing the final obstacle to the sale of the 11,200-unit complex.

According to sources, no final changes were made to the deal, which had been hammered out over a few frantic weeks in September and October. Doug Harmon of Eastdil Secured brokered the deal.

The fate of Stuyvesant Town carries great political significance because of its size and because of its role as one of the last bastions of affordable middle-class housing in Manhattan.

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The de Blasio administration made preserving Stuy Town’s affordable units a priority. On the same day the buyers went into contract for the complex, the city signed a deal with Blackstone to keep a lid on rents at 5,000 units for 20 years, in exchange for $225 million in benefits and public backing of the deal.

While the deal was widely supported by local politicians and tenant advocates, some critics argued that it didn’t do enough to preserve affordability.

“We are proud to have entered into long-term partnership with the PCVST community and the City of New York,” Jonathan Gray, Blackstone’s head of real estate, said in a statement. “We look forward to working together with them to preserve what makes this community so special.”

City Council Member Dan Garodnick, a Stuy Town resident, wrote in a statement: “For too long, the residents of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper have faced an uncertain future. That ends today.”