Friday, February 29, 2008

Driving Miss Brooklyn, a troubled Brooklyn condo market?

Apparently Forest City Ratner's decision to shift flagship Atlantic Yards tower Miss Brooklyn from condos to office space was based on discernible trends in the industry. (Then again, things can change, given that Miss Brooklyn was supposed to be office space when announced in December 2003.)

In yesterday's New York Sun, real estate columnist Michael Stoler suggested that many in the real estate community see a growing divide between the luxury market in Manhattan and some of the more speculative projects in fringe areas.

The Atlantic Yards project wouldn't exactly be located in a "fringe area," but at least one Brooklyn developer offered some general cautions:
A principal of Troutbrook Company, Marc Freud, said: "The past five years has been the era of ever increasing prices of condominiums in downtown Brooklyn, DUMBO, and many parts of Williamsburg. That era has now ended, with the for-sale condos in the 750- to 1,000-square-foot mark stalled, and pricing decreasing by as much as 15% to 20%. The overamenitizing of certain developments in these areas has done little to compel the buyer today to sign a purchase contract."

Fun fact: Freud was the developer of the Atlantic Arts Building, a converted warehouse home to Atlantic Yards uber-opponent Daniel Goldstein.

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