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'Problem' property sells at 22 West 66th Street.

After nine years in construction and dormancy, 22 West 66th Street, a vacant black tower building, has been sold to Stirling-Equities, the U.S. subsidiary of a Rome-based conglomerate.

The announcement was made by Mara Spiegel, the Helmsley-Spear Vice President and Exclusive Agent for the property who negotiated the $6.35 million transaction.

Stirling Equities will market the 47 condominium units of the 26-story tower, which is located near Lincoln Center and directly across from the headquarters of ABC-TV, in Italy and the United States.

The 60,000-square-foot building was originally planned by its developer, the late Herbert Handman, as a luxury condominium. As it neared 80 percent completion, more than 25 percent of its units were presold for prices ranging UP to $600,000. The building's duplex penthouse with its spectacular views of Central Park and the Hudson River was listed in 1984 at $4 million.

In 1986, 22 West 66th Street's construction loan was called in and it was taken over by the lender, a savings and loan bank. In 1990, First Nationwide Bank, a division of Ford Motor Credit, assumed ownership of the property.

In addition to the lethargy of the residential market, roadblocks to selling the property included the need for $5 million to complete the building, as well as the legalization of 12,000-square-foot set back bonus. Such bonuses had been rescinded by New York City in 1986. The building was incomplete at that time and its bonus was in jeopardy. The legalization of the 12,000 square feet was a crucial issue.
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Title Annotation:New York, New York
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Sep 23, 1992
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