As glut continues for new Brooklyn apartment towers, a 535 Carlton footnote (plus demand returning by 2020?)
An Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park reference in the New York Times Real Estate section today, first published online 3/16/18, As Brooklyn Towers Soar, a Sinking Feeling for Developers:
Despite the intense demand for affordable housing, filling the units is not always easy. At 535 Carlton, more than 90,000 applications were filed for the 300-unit below market rate rental building, said Ismene Speliotis, the head of MHANY Management Inc., which handles the lottery. While the building included studios priced at $548 a month for New Yorkers making as little as $20,126 a year, half the units were reserved for those making between 145 and 160 percent of median area income. Those units, including a two-bedroom asking $3,223 a month, have struggled to find renters, she said, because they are competing with similarly priced market-rate apartments in the Pacific Park area that don’t require as thorough or as invasive a vetting process.My comment (yet unpublished):
Regarding 535 Carlton, a "100% affordable" building with an enormous range of below-market units, there indeed was "intense demand" for the low-income apartments. But as I reported last April for City Limits, of the 92,743 households applying for the 297 units available in the lottery, only 2,203 were initially income-eligible to apply for the 148 middle-income units. So it's not just that those apartments are competing with market-rate units relatively nearby. It's also that few sought them in the first place.A longer-term perspective: glut ending by 2020?
While this Times article links back to a tart column by Metro columnist Ginia Bellafante last November, it's worth noting that that column rests on skepticism raised previously by me regarding that building during the otherwise triumphant public groundbreaking and grand opening ceremonies, as well as Rachel Holliday Smith's coverage (in DNAinfo and City Limits) of those apartments lingering empty.
From the article:
That hasn’t deterred builders from moving forward with thousands of new units, most of them geared toward the luxury market. In 2017, more than 5,700 rentals hit the market — the most units in a year since 2008, said Nancy Packes, the real estate consultant. And the future pipeline shows no signs of slowing: About 6,100 units are expected this year, followed by almost 9,600 in 2019.Well, Packes has no small self-interest here, but, if she's right, it would make sense for Greenland Forest City Partners to get to building.
Ms. Packes, whose clients include Brooklyn developers, said the surge in supply is cyclic, with the glut clearing out by 2019 or 2020. “They’re looking at the trees, not the forest,” she said about growth skeptics, noting that demand remains strong, fueled by a strong job market and population growth.
As of now, the only stated plan is to pursue B4, a huge tower at the northeast corner of the arena block, which could start in the second quarter of 2019 and contain more than 700 units. It wouldn't open until at least 2021, maybe 2022.
That said, relatively smaller buildings (B12, B13) on the southeast block of the site, or B15 (between Dean and Pacific streets, just east of Sixth Avenue, could get started too.