Seward Park Coop Air Rights Sale

Project Details

The potential sale of The Seward Park Coop’s development (air) rights presents an opportunity for both The Seward Park Coop and Ascend/Optimum Group.

In early November 2016, Ascend/Optimum Group purchased 222-234 East Broadway, which includes the landmarked Bialystoker building and two adjacent lots to the west and east of the property.
 
Last fall, Ascend/Optimum Group expressed interest in purchasing some of Seward Park Coop’s unused development rights – what are commonly referred to as air rights. The Seward Park Coop currently has 1.3 million square feet of unused air rights.
 
Ascend/Optimum and the Seward Park Coop Board reached agreement on a Letter of Intent stating that if the shareholders voted to proceed, Ascend/Optimum would purchase approximately 162,000 square feet for $300 per square foot or $48.6 million.

 
 
 

This is the only chance shareholders have to sell their air rights.

Should the shareholders vote in favor of selling these air rights, Ascend/Optimum Group will renovate the Bialystoker building and build two residential buildings on the two adjacent lots to the west and east of the property.
 
Should the shareholders decide not to sell the air rights, two things will follow. First, Ascend/Optimum will build on both its lots using its existing development rights. Demolition has already begun to prepare for this scenario. Second, the Coop will have lost its only opportunity to sell some of its air rights. Ascend/Optimum is the only property owner adjacent to the Seward Park Coop that can purchase these air rights.

 

The Air Rights Plan

With the air rights, Ascend/Optimum Group will renovate the interior of the Bialystoker building and add a 242 feet high (22-story) residential building on the western lot and a 343 feet high (33-story) residential building on the eastern lot with a 12-foot cantilever over the ramp to Seward Park’s underground garage. For reference, each Seward Park building is approximately 175 feet high. Total area of the two buildings is approximately 233,200 square feet. The Bialystoker building is approximately 36,800 square feet. This makes the total area of the property approximately 270,000 square feet. The entire property will have approximately 210 units total.

 

The facades of the buildings in these photos are not final. These photos represent the mass and dimensions of the buildings only.

 

The As-of-Right Plan

Without the air rights, Ascend/Optimum Group would still build on its properties, renovating the interior of the Bialystoker building and adding a 239 feet high (20-story) building on the western lot and a 186 feet high (17-story) building on the eastern lot of Bialystoker, respectively. There would be no cantilever in the as-of-right plan. For reference, each Seward Park building is approximately 175 feet high. Total area of the two buildings is approximately 78,200 square feet. The Bialystoker building is approximately 36,800 square feet. This makes the total area of the property approximately 115,000 square feet. The entire property will have approximately 140 units total.

 

The facades of the buildings in these photos are not final. These photos represent the mass and dimensions of the buildings only.