Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Giant Waterfront Development to Rise in South Bronx

One of the largest and most expensive developments in the South Bronx is preparing to get underway. Developer Brookfield Properties has unveiled new renderings for its massive seven-building Bankside project along the Harlem River in Mott Haven.

The development will span 4.3 acres on either side of the Third Avenue Bridge, with more than 1,350 apartments (30 percent of which will be “affordable”), a new park fronting the Harlem River, and ground-floor retail that includes a tech-focused community center. All told, Brookfield will invest $950 million into the massive mixed-used project.

But Brookfield wasn’t originally attached to this development: The site was previously owned by Chetrit Group and Somerset Partners, which had originally planned a similarly enormous complex along the waterfront. 

In 2018, those developers sold the sites to Brookfield for $165 million, for reasons that were not disclosed. Chetrit and Somerset are behind a handful of other developments throughout the South Bronx, and had unsuccessfully tried to rebrand the area as the “Piano District.”

When Brookfield took over, they kept some things—including the scope of the entire development and the architect of record, Hill West Architects—but changed up others, including the number of affordable units and the energy efficiency of the towers. The developers will aim for LEED certification.

Construction is already underway, and will be completed in two phases: The first will bring 450 apartments to the north side of the bridge at 2401 Third Avenue, with an expected completion date of 2021. The rest will rise on the south side of the bridge, at 101 Lincoln Avenue, with a completion date in 2022. 

A significant chunk of space will also be given over to a new, 34,000-square-foot waterfront park, designed by MPFP, which will have sections for “passive and semi-active use,” according to the developers.