Drilling Begins Ahead of 6-Story Commercial Development at 19 East Houston Street

Posted on: May 31st, 2016 at 5:16 am by
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It’s a narrow tract of SoHo land currently underutilized and certainly overpriced, so why not re-develop it?

The city’s Economic Development Corporation, the previous owner, ultimately decided to sell the 6,190 square-foot parcel (address is 19 East Houston) in 2013 to Madison Capital for $26 million. However, the deal didn’t actually go through until two weeks ago, if you can believe it. Said developer, in conjunction with Vornado (recent addition as partner), is planning a six-story commercial office building that also boasts retail on the ground floor. The finished product will carry a total floor area of more than 30,000 square-feet. Stores won’t be “big box,” thanks to a protracted fight with the community a couple years ago.

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Per the Wall Street Journal:

The glass building will have about 11,500 square feet of retail space on the first and second floors with 22,751 square feet of high-end office space on floors three to six. In addition, the building will have an outdoor terrace. The developers hope to complete the building by mid-2018.

And now the site is ready for its multimillion-dollar makeover. The random assembly of emergency MTA vehicles were cleared out earlier this month, and a drill rig imported for soil samples. This is always the first indication that something big is coming; testing water levels and gauging the composition of the fill, rock, and soil beneath the street. Readouts can then provide a better snapshot of scope for excavation activities.

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19 East Houston renderingProject plans were filed and approved by the Department of Buildings in July 2015. Right around the same time that a fire that took out the bones of the Honest Boy Fruit Stand. The vendor itself closed shop in 2014 after decades in business.

Meanwhile, that highly-visible advertising space on the adjacent building facade will probably disappear with any new plans for this property.

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DKNY mural with Honest Boy Fruit Stand, October 2008

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