Chetrit, Somerset are selling site of Bronx megaproject to Brookfield

Developers planned to build 1,300 market-rate rental units

Ric Clark, Joseph Chetrit, 101 Lincoln Avenue and Keith Rubenstein
From left: Ric Clark, Joseph Chetrit, 101 Lincoln Avenue and Keith Rubenstein (Credit: Hill West Architects and Getty Images)

After years of planning, Somerset Partners and the Chetrit Group are walking away from one of the most ambitious real estate projects in the history of the Bronx.

The partners are selling their development sites at 101 Lincoln Avenue and 2401 Third Avenue to Brookfield Property Partners for $165 million, the New York Post reported.

Chetrit and Keith Rubenstein’s Somerset planned to build seven towers with 1,300 market-rate rental units on the sites, which sit next to the Harlem River in Mott Haven. They paid $58 million to acquire the sites, public records show. The developers first filed plans in 2015, and were in the market for a $500 million construction loan for the project, which was expected to cost around $600 million.

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The Post reported that Brookfield will likely “tweak” the development’s design. Cushman & Wakefield brokered the sale.

The project became notorious in 2015 when Chetrit and Somerset hosted a “Bronx is burning”-themed party with celebrities like Carmelo Anthony and Kendall Jenner at the site, drawing criticism from then-City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, among others.  The developers’ attempts to rename the neighborhood “Piano District” with the help of giant billboards also didn’t go down well with many locals.

Brookfield, one of the city’s most active developers, is currently developing the massive Manhattan West mixed-use development near Penn Station and recently agreed to take over retail real estate investment trust General Growth Properties.  [NYP]Konrad Putzier