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New developments celebrate New York's suburban cities.

Two separate projects in New York City's northern suburbs are sparking a celebration of communities as varied as downtown Yonkers - New York's fourth largest city and the Village of Bronxville.

The Avalon in the Village of Bronxville

The Avalon is a 110-residence luxury rental community that lust opened in Bronxville, NY. The mid-rise community offers one- and two-bedroom single floor and two- and three-bedroom duplex apartments, many of which have terraces, balconies and gas fireplaces. Rents range from $2,000 to over $6,000.

The Avalon is located directly across the street from the MetroNorth station in the Village of Bronxville, and within easy access of major highways. Despite its centrality, this site was derelict for years, as builders and public officials tried to arrange for its redevelopment. In the early 1980's, a developer purchased the property, but failed over a period of eight years to secure approvals for its proposed condominium development.

Collins Enterprises bought the site in 1993 and our community-friendly plans received zoning approval within six months. AvalonBay Communities, Inc., joined our development team, provided financing for the project and will manage the community.

We celebrated the Avalon's grand opening on Wednesday, May 26, 1999. On hand were the Mayor Nancy D. Hand and Dick Michaux, president and CEO of AvalonBay Communities.

Hudson Park in Yonkers

Political disputes long frustrated the development of an abandoned stretch of Yonkers' downtown waterfront, as well. By the late 1990's, the city had approved a master plan for the urban renewal of the downtown. In 1998, Collins Enterprises' proposed Hudson Park at Yonkers was chosen as the mixed-use centerpiece of the $200 million effort.

Other elements of the revitalization of Yonkers' downtown are a waterfront public park; a restored 1850's recreational pier; retail and office space; a Robert A.M. Stern-designed office building; an outdoor mural; and restored historic buildings that include the historic Trolley Barn - which will be converted into an art cinema and entertainment center.

These projects are already well underway. The historic recreational pier has been restored; a streetscape program has already improved all the streets leading to the waterfront; the restoration of Larkin Plaza will be completed this year; a successful anti-graffiti program is in place; and we have received the necessary city approvals to lay the plans for Hudson Park's ground-breaking.

Both the Yonkers project and the new community in the Village of Bronxville are bringing new construction to unused sites after years, even decades, of stagnation. These sites were parking lots or just plain empty for so long, that many people forgot their value to the entire community. By giving them new uses, we believe each of our projects will bring value and new life to these towns and cities.

In a leasing transaction certain to rank as one of region's most creative deals of 1999, Grubb & Ellis has negotiated a $54 million, 40-year lease on behalf of the Grand Union Company, for a 220,000 square-foot industrial site in North Bellmore, NY.

The national grocery giant plans to create a retail complex from what is currently a cul de sac of several industrial buildings located one block south of the Southern State Parkway. Presently envisioned for the property at Charles Court and Newbridge Road is the development of an 80,000 square-foot building designed for retail use, which will replace the industrial warehouses.

Grand Union is considering two options for its own use. One is to remain in its existing 40,000 square-foot retail establishment, which it owns and is merely two blocks away, or occupy some 50,000 square feet of the new building for a Grand Union Superstore, leaving the remaining 30,000 square feet available for lease.

Fred Komson, managing director of the Grubb & Ellis Long Island office, represented Grand Union in the leasing transaction, and will also serve as exclusive marketing agent for the property. Komson also represented the owner, Charles Court LLP.

Commenting on the transaction, Komson said "This is an extremely exciting project. The Grand Union Company, by converting an unsightly industrial parcel into an upscale retail complex, will do much to enhance North Bellmore and its surrounding communities. Such a major, positive investment reflects the area's ongoing vitality and promise, and I look forward to welcoming new retailers."

Redevelopment of the property is slated to begin as soon as possible.

Arthur Collins, II, President, Collins Enterprises, LLC
COPYRIGHT 1999 Hagedorn Publication
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Title Annotation:The Boroughs/Suburban Markets
Author:Collins, Arthur, II
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Jun 9, 1999
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