Monday, May 27, 2013

Queens Tallest Residential Building to Begin Construction

Rockrose Development is in the process of demolishing seven dilapidated Long Island City warehouses to pave the way for the construction of what will become the tallest residential building in Queens. The 50-story, 907,000-square-foot, 500-foot-tall building at 43-25 Hunter Street will not only be the tallest, but also have more units than any other residential building in the Borough. Rockrose will open up bidding to find a subcontractor for the $400 million project in the coming weeks. Construction is expected to be completed in early 2016.

The Court Square area of Long Island City is zoned for high-rise development, while all the areas around it remain low-rise.

"That means a lot of apartments with a lot of very amazing views of the city,” says Justin Elghanayan, who runs Rockrose Development with his father, Henry.

Rockrose will open up bidding to find a subcontractor in the coming weeks, with construction of the property slated to begin in the fourth quarter and completion of the estimated $400 million project scheduled for early in 2016.

The property is situated in the Court Square area of Long Island City, where the 50-story Citigroup tower at One Court Square once stuck out like a sore thumb.  But Rockrose has led the way in the methodical transformation of the area’s residential and retail landscape and Mr. Elghanayan believes his new tower will sit well alongside Citigroup’s.

“I always looked at the Citigroup tower and it looked so lonely.  I said, ‘Citigroup needs a girlfriend.’  So in my mind, this building is its girlfriend,” he said.

The buildings being demolished to make way for the new tower, which will sit on a 47,800-square-foot lot, include 25-25 44th Drive; 43-25, 43-15, 43-11 and 43-09 on Hunter Street; and 27-02 and 27-06 on 43rd Avenue.

The 80/20 rental building (80 percent market rate, 20 percent affordable units) will feature 30,000 square feet of amenity space, including a full-court basketball court, yoga and library rooms, and multiple roof decks.  The architect for the project is  SLCE Architects.

Rockrose is also enrolling in New York City’s Voluntary Cleanup Program, created in 2011 by the Office of Environmental Remediation to facilitate redevelopment of underutilized sites with low to moderate levels of contamination.  The program achieves standards that protect human health and the environment, while keeping projects on schedule and offering developers up to $125,000 in grants towards remediation.

This summer, Rockrose is kicking off leasing at its newly constructed, 709-unit building, The Linc, located at 43-00 Crescent Street in Court Square.

The firm also has plans to construct Eagle Loft at 43-22 Queens Street, a 700-unit warehouse-to-residential conversion in the former Eagle Electric facility directly across Jackson Avenue from the Citicorp tower; and is retrofitting a number of retail spaces located within a stone’s throw of one another in the square.

The developer is bringing more critical mass to the area – more people and more bodies to match the growth of the neighborhood.

Rockrose spearheaded the development of Long Island City over a decade ago after it purchased a 40-acre site along the waterfront from Pepsi and began its construction of soaring glass and concrete towers that are now synonymous with the neighborhood’s waterfront.

In 2009, Rockrose, owned by members of the Elghanayan family, split into two entities - Rockrose and TF Cornerstone, with TF Cornerstone retaining the waterfront properties and Rockrose focusing on development in the Court Square area.