Residential development has been slow to arrive on the industrial edges of Mott Haven in the South Bronx, despite a boom in hotels and big box stores and a rezoning several years ago. But someone has decided to stake a claim in the forlorn and transit-rich area near the Harlem River waterfront and the Major Deegan Expressway.
On Friday, a new building application was filed for a 10-story apartment building with ground floor commercial space at 221 East 138th Street, on the corner of Canal Place. It would hold 57 apartments distributed across 47,000 square feet of residential space, along with 3,000 square feet of ground floor retail. The average apartment would be about 824 square feet.
Residential would begin on the second floor, with eight units, and floors two through eight would have six apartments plus “two at half dwelling units” each. There would be five apartments on the ninth floor and only two on the tenth, which would include indoor recreation space and a roof deck.
The ground floor would host stores, a lobby and bike storage. The building will have a 17-space parking garage in the cellar, as zoning requires.
A rep from the developer, Tahoe Development, told us it will be a “high-end luxury building” with 80% market rate rentals and 20% affordable housing. The project could become condos, but the firm said they’re waiting to see whether the state legislature will change or extend the 421-a abatement later this month.
Since this site is located in an inclusionary housing zone, the developer gets a 30% bonus in floor area for including below-market units. Zoning would limit the project to 37,500 square feet (9,500 square feet smaller than the planned development) if the builder chose not to add affordable apartments.
Architect Michael Muroff will handle the design. The 10,000-square-foot property is currently home to two warehouses, and it last changed hands for $1,500,000 in 2005.
While ground-up construction has been difficult to finance without subsidies in Mott Haven, it seems like developers have begun converting the area’s old loft buildings into market-rate condos and rentals.
The neighborhood’s first privately financed condo development was a converted early 20th century brick warehouse at 305 East 140th Street, where one apartment sold for $789,143 in 2008. Another mixed-use building on the same block is headed for a condo conversion, and a former piano factory south of the Major Deegan, the Clocktower, has 1,150-square-foot studios renting for $3,500 a month.