Slate snaps up New School dorm in Greenwich Village for $23M

The buyer is planning to redevelop the 34,000-square-foot property as a luxury condominium

The New School’s Eugene Lang College at 118 West 13th Street and Martin Nussbaum and David Schwartz of Slate Property Group (TNS, Slate)
The New School’s Eugene Lang College at 118 West 13th Street and Martin Nussbaum and David Schwartz of Slate Property Group (TNS, Slate)

Once home to America’s priciest college housing, The New School’s dorm at 118 West 13th Street is set to graduate into luxury condos.

The almost 34,000-square-foot property was sold to Slate Property Group for $22.85 million, or $673 a foot, in a deal that closed late last week, The Real Deal has learned.

The 175 rooms at New School’s Eugene Lang College dorm were once dubbed the most expensive in the country, with students paying almost $16,000 a year for room and board in the 2009-2010 academic year, according to The Observer.

The seven-story building has been gutted and Slate is partnering with private equity firm Avenue Realty Capital to convert the building into a luxurious condominium, sources say. Slate confirmed the sale but declined to comment on the condo conversion. A person with knowledge said BKSK Architects have been hired as the architect of record and a high-end interior design architect has yet to be selected.

Bob Knakal, JLL’s chair of New York investment sales, handled the sale for The New School and called the building a “fantastic site” for condos.

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“There is very very little new construction within a couple of blocks of that building,” said Knakal. “When those units are delivered to the market, they’re going to be a rare opportunity for a residential buyer.”

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Knakal first began marketing the dorm for The New School three years ago and received an offer around $30 million, but the school decided not to go through with the sale. The property came back on the market this year and Knakal said he expected to find a buyer willing to pay in the “high teens.”

A source with knowledge of the transaction said Slate had to increase its initial offer to $22.85 million to compete with other bidders. The person said The New School was very focused on working with a buyer “they knew could close.” Slate acquired the dorm with financing from Signature Bank, though the amount of the loan was not known, sources said. The mortgage and deed for 118 West 13th Street have yet to be publicly recorded.

A spokesperson for The New School said “the timing was right” to sell the former residence and that it was part of the institution’s strategic plan.