How We Live Now
Poor millennials! A new study has found that 79 percent of them believe that owning a home is part of the American dream, despite the fact that crippling student loan debt, a disappointing job market and one missed generational opportunity after another make such a dream out of reach for many of them.
In fact, millennials are lucky if they can even rent their own homes—a full 36 percent still live with their parents, according to a 2012 study by the Pew Research Group. (In 2005, only 21 percent of 25 to 34-year-olds lived in the parental home, according to the U.S. Census).
In the most recent issue of New York magazine, architecture critic Justin Davidson attempts to lob a grenade, arguing in favor of gentrification in the provocatively titled, “Is gentrification all bad?“
But rather than a Bloombergian manifesto in support of ever more billionaires moving to New York, Davidson offers a well-argued, thoroughly-reported and exceedingly reasonable case for the beneficent impact of middle-class newcomers on lower-income neighborhoods. Examining two gentrifying neighborhoods—Inwood and Bed-Stuy—he concludes that both neighborhoods are benefitting from the influx of more upwardly-mobile professionals and the changes that follow in their wake.
Davidson’s right, of course—few would argue that gentrification is all bad—but he’s also missing the point.
Richard Born has made a career out of providing other people with places to lay their heads—from the budget-conscious bunks of the Pod Hotel to the lavish, faux-threadbare suites of the Bowery. But after long tending to the lodgings of tourists and visitors, Mr. Born is finally looking after his own needs. And looking after them very well, indeed. The hotelier and wife Deborah have spent the startling sum of $18 million on a floor-through at 1020 Fifth Avenue.
As more and more of New York is colonized by gleaming luxury towers and elegant condo conversions, the grim experience of rodent infestations, crumbling ceilings and broken boilers has become ever more remote to many New Yorkers, particularly the newly-minted variety who live in $2,100 a month studios paid for by their parents. But the 2,700 units added to the Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s 2014 Alternative Enforcement Program list is a testament to the ongoing reality of substandard housing in New York.
When we spoke earlier this month with Corcoran’s Vicki Negron about the recent sale for $7.5 million of a kingly assemblage at 164 South Oxford Street in Fort Greene—a deal on which she acted as the seller’s broker—she expressed hope that the buyer would not badly violate the neighborhood’s pseudo-countrified character. “The new owner Read More
Amenity Arms Race
The Woolworth Tower has a teaser site! Too bad there’s nothing on it! As
Sales are expected to launch in 2014 and from the teaser site, it appears that one, two, three and four bedrooms will be offered, 40 in all spread out over the top 30 floors. Oh, and there will be a Read More
Following in the footsteps of The Mark and Extell’s Carlton House, which kicked off their partnerships with Bergdorf Goodman and Barneys last year, Elad has announced that its latest luxury conversion 22 Central Park South will also feature in-home access to personal shoppers and hair stylists from Bergdorf. The upscale department store is literally right around the corner, as a New York Times article on extreme amenities points out. But why go all the way down the street to find your own personal shopper when the concierge can call one 24/7? (The service will prove especially helpful, of course, for those last minute pre-gala emergencies.)
Manhattan on the Hudson
In the latest issue of Depatures, Michael Gross, chronicler extraordinaire of the rich and real estate obsessed, takes a look at the race to cross the most tantalizing of all residential thresholds—the $100 million mark. Things have come close, of course—the $94 million contract signed on a One57 penthouse, the $95 million contract at 432 Park, the many conceited listings whose asks far exceed $100 million (reach for the moon, right? And if you fail, you’ll fall among the stars, drifting through a dark, oxygen-less abyss.) Besides breaking some news—notably, that the Zeckendorf’s 50 UN Plaza is offering its top three floors as either a $45 million floor-through and $55 million duplex, or $100 million triplex (which comes with what is sure to become the next must-have in trophy real estate: a private, 50-foot-long heated outdoor pool), Mr. Gross’s piece also includes some ridiculously good quotes. A few of our favorites, below:
The New New School
In the nomenclature of American popular culture, the subdivision often acts as a kind of emblem of soullessness—a synecdoche for the vapid, homogenous worst of postwar middle-class life. The term conjures images of cheaply made houses that have been designed to appear expensive, with fat colonnades and grand chandeliers suspended in windows over entryways.
Here, Read More
A week before the New School was set to open its new 375,000-square-foot University Center at 65 Fifth Avenue, a water main burst at the corner of Fifth and 13th, flooding the new building’s cafe/event space and ground-floor classrooms—necessitating several months of extra work on the flooded areas. Nonetheless, the 16-story brass and glass building, which represents the largest construction project in the university’s history, will open its doors on Thursday. (Meanwhile, city workers continue their efforts to repair the broken water main out front, laboring in a giant pit that has shut down Fifth Avenue for more than a week.)