Late last summer, we brought you the news of a new condo building planned for a large lot at the corner of Delancey and Pitt streets. A group of 53 investors pooled their resources to purchase the land and construct an apartment building for themselves, under the name Delancey Bridge Tower LLC. As paperwork has trickled in to the Department of Buildings over the last few months, details have begun to emerge.
The full plans have not been approved by city officials, so everything is subject to change. But so far, it looks like the building will reach about 120 feet into the air and total nearly 60,000 square feet of residential space, with an additional 8,300 square feet of “community facilities.” The plan includes 12 stories plus a cellar and a rooftop, with a total of 69 apartments. It will have 75 feet of road frontage along the north side of Delancey Street, and 53 feet of road frontage on Pitt Street. The existing building at the corner of Delancey and Pitt is not part of the project.
According to plans filed by Flushing architect Michael Kang, the basement level of the new building at 208 Delancey St. will contain 10 parking spaces, a laundry room and a gym, as well as rooms for meters and trash compactors. The first floor will encompass the lobby and space labeled “ambulatory diagnostic” in the applications, which appears to be the “community facility” cited in the square footage count. The remaining floors will be composed of four to seven residences each, some with balconies, along with mechanical rooms. The rooftop will host the elevator machine room and recreational space.
In November, the new owners applied for a permit to demolish the one existing building on the lot, the former home of T & J Auto Repairs at 210 Delancey St. Proprietor Tony Marano closed his shop there in the fall, after nearly five decades fixing cars in his garage abutting the Williamsburg Bridge. Marano and his family, including son Anthony, a real estate developer and principal at Ozymandius, had acquired the lot his shop occupied and four surrounding parcels over the last 40 years, and sold them all to the Delancey Bridge Tower group for $8.5 million in an all-cash deal in August, according to city land records. The investors paid a minimum of $160,000 each toward the land purchase, according to documents on file with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission. They plan to contribute another $240,000 each toward construction.
The arrangement, known in real estate parlance as a “syndication deal,” allows groups of individual investors to capitalize on strength in numbers to collaborate on a project. Such deals have grown in popularity since the real estate crash of 2007 made commercial financing so difficult, especially among minority and immigrant groups. The Delancey Bridge Tower investors describe themselves as Chinese-Americans who hail predominantly from the New York City metro area. In an October story, The Real Deal featured the Delancey project as an example of that trend, saying:
Syndication interest started peaking in June, when the stock market roller coaster convinced many to seek more stable investments, said Timour Shafran, vice president at Capin & Associates.
“Immigrants or first-generation [buyers] tend to gravitate toward investments they can touch and that are under their own control,” Shafran said. “The great thing about real estate is that you can rub it. It’s there. It’s not going to move.”