Long-Neglected Building Site at Grand and Orchard Sold

This eyesore on the north side of Grand Street between Ludlow and Orchard has a new owner. Photo © www.thelodownny.com

It may be too early to call it a trend, but the Lower East Side commercial real estate market seems to have gathered some steam this summer. In addition to the sale of a large property at Delancey and Pitt streets destined for redevelopment as a 12-story condominium we reported earlier this week, The Lo-Down has learned that the future of a long-dormant construction site on Grand Street is in new hands.

City land records show that the lot at 324-326 Grand St., between Orchard and Ludlow, along with part of an adjoining lot, sold for $4.8 million in a deal recorded July 15.

The transaction includes the square lot in the middle of the block on Grand, which has about 50 feet of store frontage, and the rear portion of a long narrow lot with frontage around the corner at 65 Ludlow, according to deeds filed with the city register. The Grand Street lot has been vacant for several years and will now be combined with the partial lot behind it, according to public records.

A partnership called 326 Grand Realty bought all of Lot # 28 and part of Lot #21, highlighted in green.

The seller was a corporation called 68 Orchard LLC, headed by well-known LES landlord Baruch Singer, who has offices at 95 Delancey St. The buyer, a corporation called 326 Grand Realty Inc., is headed by Bo Jin Zhu and listed an address of 11 E. Broadway, Suite 7A as well as an office in Elmhurst, N.Y.

Singer–dubbed a slumlord by much of the media–planned once upon a time to build an 18-story, 36-unit apartment building on the Grand Street lot, Curbed reported in 2008.

An attorney representing the new owners, Ann Hsiung, said she was not at liberty to discuss her client’s plans for the property.

The lot at 324-326 Grand St. has been empty for several years.


More on Zelig Blumenthal’s Move to Brooklyn

Photo by Bracha Felt

A couple of weeks ago we wrote about the departure of another Essex Street institution, Zelig Blumenthal.  After almost 60 years on the Lower East Side, the torah scribe and Judaica shop vacated its iconic 13 Essex storefront, relocating to Brooklyn.

In the past day, we’ve exchanged emails with Mordechai Blumenthal, who runs the business now. After our story, he received calls from customers asking for more information.