By C. J. HUGHES
Published: June 29, 2012
NEWCOMER A rendering of a building tentatively called the Larstrand, going up on Broadway at 77th Street. It will have 181 rental units with high-end finishes.
Units in these buildings, which have finishes like mahogany floors and amenities like washers and dryers, leased quickly, even though rents were higher than the neighborhood average.
Now a new project is trying to replicate their successes. Developed byFriedland Properties and Rose Associates, a 20-story rental building is going up at Broadway and 77th Street. The building is now known as the Larstrand, though developers say that is just a working title.
What is settled is that the high-rise will have 181 units, from 480-square-foot studios to 1,700-square-foot three-bedrooms, said Robert A. Scaglion, a senior managing director of Rose Associates.
The $135 million project, which kicked off last summer, is not expected to be complete until the end of 2013, but developers have already chosen many finishes. Kitchens will have quartz counters, Bosch appliances and Bertazzoni ovens. Bathrooms will have Italian tile walls and floors, Kohler tubs, and under-floor radiant heat. Bath mirrors will be defoggable with the flick of a switch; a portion of mirror surface will have a television built in.
Rents for the three-bedrooms, which will be on the corners with views of Broadway, are expected to be $90 a square foot, Mr. Scaglion said, and one-bedrooms, which will average 700 square feet, could cost around $80 a square foot. That comes out to around $13,000 and $4,750 per month, respectively. (Twenty percent of the units will be offered below market rents for qualifying tenants.)
The average rent in May for a one-bedroom on the Upper West Side was $3,471 a month, or about $60 a square foot, according to MNS, a real estate brokerage.
To help justify these prices, and to compete with other buildings, the Larstrand developers are putting extra effort into the common areas. The 4,800-square-foot roof deck, for instance, will have an outdoor movie theater, which is something the Corner did not offer, Mr. Scaglion said. The theater could be the scene of movie-night parties, he added.
“The evolution of the high-end luxury building is that residents are now requiring special programming in these kinds of spaces,” said Mr. Scaglion, who also marketed and leased the Aire, at 200 West 67th Street. in addition, Rose handled the marketing for the Corner, at 200 West 72nd Street.
The L-shaped Larstrand site takes up the entire eastern side of Broadway between 77th and 78th Streets (the residential address is 227 West 77th Street). It will have 40,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floor, as well as two lower levels. Also on the site are two other buildings, which will be preserved and renovated. So far, CVS has leased a 9,800-square-foot store, a company spokesman said. The two-story buildings that used to line the block were home to a diner, a pizza place and a taekwondo school, as well as the popular Asian restaurant Ruby Foo’s, which closed its location there in 2009.
For Friedland, which did not respond to a request for an interview, No. 227 continues a recent push into residential development. The company, led by the brothers Lawrence and Melvin Friedland, owns more than 100 buildings on the East Coast, according to its Web site, including several in the area. But brokers said the firm had not built a major new one until the 22-story Melar went up at 250 West 93rd Street in 2007.
The Melar has 143 units, ranging in size from studios to three-bedrooms, though rents, at an average of $70 a square foot, are below what No. 227 plans to charge, Mr. Scaglion said, because the Melar is north of Broadway’s liveliest shopping district.
One factor working in the Larstrand’s favor is that it will come to market with little in the way of competition, since many development plans were deferred during the recession, said Andrew Barrocas, the chief executive of MNS. With limited inventory and strong demand, vacancy rates have fallen into the low single digits, so rental projects that open in the next two years are in a great position, he said. “I was blown away by what the rents ended up being for the Corner,” Mr. Barrocas said, “and I expect this building to do just as well.”