Thursday, August 03, 2006

This Is A Wakeup Call!

Volume 19 • Issue 11 July 28- - August 3, 2006


By Ronda Kaysen
The residents of 101 Warren St. will not need to trek upstate to enjoy pine trees — they’ll have a whole grove of them right outside their window.
The new luxury development currently under construction will come equipped with a bucolic grove of 101 Austrian pine trees set atop the building’s third floor terrace. The building’s sports center will open out on the grove, and all the residents in the 227 condo units will have access to the trees.
“There’s just the serenity and peacefulness of this grove,” said landscape architect Thomas Balsley. “The needles, the texture, the sound of the wind going through the pine trees above. It’s really an extraordinary experience, it’s almost religious. It’s one that would be transported to this roof as a gift to the residents of this building.”
The “gift” will be reserved for the condo residents only. The public and rental tenants in the building’s 163 rental units will not have access to the forest or any of the other amenities reserved for the condo residents.
“You’ll see the pines rising off from the roof, but you will probably have to go across the street to see them,” said Balsley.
In 2005, the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. set aside $15 million in Community Development Block Grants for 77 units of affordable rental housing at the lot, formerly called Site 5B. “They will have their own amenity rooms in the rental building,” Jeffrey Sussman, executive vice president for the developer, Edward J. Minskoff Equities, Inc., said in an e-mail. Rental tenants will have a separate fitness room and lounge and a different address: 89 Murray St.
The 1 million sq. ft. development has no public plaza, either. “The rental building was the giveback for the community,” Lawrence Kruysman, Sunshine Group’s director of sales for the property, told Downtown Express.
The Skidmore, Ownings & Merrill-designed building will open at the end of 2007 and already, buyers are grabbing at the luxury abodes, which range from $1.2 million for a one bedroom apartment to a whopping $16 million for a five-bedroom 34th and 35th floor duplex. Nearly 50 percent of the units have sold since they hit the market in April. “Sales have been great,” said Kruysman.
Promotional materials boast a Whole Foods Market, a sports center and the building’s proximity to P.S. 234, “the city’s top ranked public school.”
A promotional video shows a future Tribeca family—equipped with a handsome couple, their two curly-topped young children and miniature dogs—reveling in their sleek, modernist abode.
Current Tribeca residents have long complained that 234, which is currently at 120 percent capacity, will be further squeezed by the new residential developments in the neighborhood.