Archive for category: Blog

Ron Hershco – New York Legislature passed the Omnibus Bill

We all know that New York City has earned a reputation of being one of the most expensive housing markets. It’s not uncommon to see New Yorkers shelling out up to 30% of their income for housing.

But few actually know that New York City has been helping condo and coop owners address this money pressure through the NYC Condo/ Coop Tax Abatement Extensions, which costs New York City about $500 million annually in tax revenue.

The tax credits ranging from 17.5% – 25% for 2012 must be renewed every three years. The New York Legislature left many worried that the bill wouldn’t be passed due to the costs incurred from Hurricane Sandy. However, it has been confirmed that the New York Legislature recently passed an Omnibus Housing bill that renews the coop and condo tax abatement for another three years, according to The Huffington Post.

These tax credits will have a positive impact on the recovery of the New York City housing market. The Omnibus Bill has removed some of the roadblocks that would have resulted in the completion of stalled housing projects in Midtown and Downtown Manhattan. The restoration and flexibility in the completion of these construction projects will now result in new residential projects being developed in these high density areas.

Ron Hershco, a developer that specializes in residential properties in New York believes that the passing of this bill will help the New York housing marketing immensely. The impact of Hurricane Sandy was devastating, but the fact that the New York Legislature has passed the bill for the next three years means that it is committed to helping New York residents get back on their feet.

Ron Hershco – 8 years, building project in Flushing nowhere to be seen

It’s been so long and if you ask the small business owners in Queen’s business district in Flushing, what’s happening with the development project that’s suppose to revitalize the area, they don’t know what to tell you.

The $825 Flushing Commons project is nowhere near to be making progress.

Back in 2005, Flushing based TDC Development, backed by Rockerfeller Group won the rights to redevelop a five-acre city owned parking lot and build 600 apartments, plus 420,000 square retail and office space. Plus, they were going to throw in a YMCA center and an additional 1,600 spaces.

But the project is not progressing and it was only until 2010 that Flushing Commons finally won the needed city council approval. TDC’s website says that the project will be completed by 2013 or 2014, but that’s unlikely due to the construction work involved, which will take easily more than three years.

According to Mr. Rim, who heads up Union Street Small Business Association, there’s already been an impact on small business owners in the area who have been forced to close down due to lack of parking in the area.

The small business owners are not convinced and they are not optimistic as they have seen no changes to the site for years. Ron Hershco says it’s important that developers try and complete their projects on time and balance out the interests of the whole community. This is a difficult situation, but everyone must work together to get this site developed.

Ron Hershco 5 tips that will ruin your chances of selling your home

The recession has impacted the real estate market for a number of years and it’s not getting better for the foreseeable future. The prospect of selling your home quickly seems far off, but perhaps you’re not using the right approach or strategy to get a quick sell.

Ron Hershco, a real estate developer in New York, has some tips for you to consider if you want to increase your chances of selling your home quickly.

There are no pictures of your home

This is a necessity. In todays competitive world, having no pictures screams out to a buyer “skip me,” I haven’t bothered to market myself properly. Your listing needs to include lots of pictures and they need to be taken with a high quality camera. If you’re using a camera phone, make sure it’s at least 8MP.

You got to have curb appeal

Potential buyers like to scour listings, but the one’s that stand out have a nice landscaped garden in the front. If your house looks nice on the outside, buyers will be more inclined to see what’s in the inside.

Poor description of the property

Write a great description of what you are trying to sell and use some creativity. Remember to stay away from cliché phrases such as “best home on the market.” Be sincere in your words and you can comfortably say that your neighborhood is child friendly.

You priced your property too low

This can be seen as a red flag. Do your research and find out what other homes sold in your area. Understanding your market value is essential in getting your property sold quickly and for the price you want.

You’re home when the home is shown

This is a no-no. Home buyers like to have privacy when they are considering buying a home. Plus, they can’t visualize whether that property can be their home. Give them the space they need to make an informed decision.

Getting a quick sell isn’t difficult to achieve, but with the current economic challenges, it can be if you don’t follow some of the tips above. Essentially, be smart when you list your house and think about if you were a buyer what you would want.

Ron Hershco: Redefining Long Island City with Residential Development

In 2001 thirty-seven blocks were rezoned from industrial to residential-industrial use, in Long Island City, Queens. Developers were allowed to convert various industrial buildings to residential use. Those with a vision for a brighter future, like Ron Hershco, seized the opportunity. In 2006, Hershco developed and opened the area’s first ground-up residential condominium.

With so few residential buildings, Ron Hershco helped pioneer the area with his 12-story project, named Echelon, which boasted 54 units ranging in price from $345,000 to $1,000,000. Since then Long Island City has seen unbelievable development. The amazing development of the last decade or so is fitting for an area marked by changes that have transformed it into the wonderful mix of old and hip it has become today.

The history of Long Island City is characterized by its location and distinct neighborhoods, and by its transportation resources (subway, ferry service, tunnels, and bridges), which has led to major development through the years. In the 1800s, Long Island City was known as Astoria. Wealthy New Yorkers, wanting to escape city life traveled to Astoria and built mansions in the area. In 1870, the villages and hamlets of Astoria, Ravenswood, Hunters Point, and Steinway consolidated and became known as Long Island City. Less than thirty years later, Long Island City became part of New York City as NYC expanded to include Queens. Transportation links opened the door to commercial and industrial development and soon factories lined the East River waterfront.

By the 1970s, Long Island City was experiencing the decline of manufacturing affecting the entire nation. Although it remains NYC’s major industrial area, in the 70’s, a new era of artistic and cultural awakening was begun with the opening of P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center. Artists escaping the high cost of doing business in Manhattan and Brooklyn have set up shop throughout Long Island City.

Since Ron Hershco’s Echelon project, Long Island City has continued to shed industry to make room for greater residential and commercial development. Like any area in flux, housing in Long Island City is a mixed bag, with widely ranging prices, sometimes from one block to the next.  Real estate prices and residential availability are often determined by the neighborhood.  Astoria and Hunters Point have seen great appreciation while others, such as Ravenswood and Dutch Kills, remain off the real estate radar.

The trend initiated by Mr. Hershco and his company continues today. People looking for a more peaceful way of life, away from the city, continue to flock to Long Island City’s neighborhoods where condos are still in high demand. Even in today’s market, condo prices range from about $400,000 for a studio to about $870,000 for a two-bedroom. Some three-bedrooms go for $1,000,000 or more! Although three-bedrooms are hard to come by.

Long Island City is still in the process of transformation. People like Ron Hershco have had a role to play in the changes taking place in the area. Since the official opening of Echelon, residential real estate continues to expand. Long Island City has become home to a dozen subway stations and a handful of bus lines to accommodate the many commuters. Besides the expanding waterfront park, there are many trendy restaurants, art galleries, and much more in way of entertainment and family fun.

http://connection.ebscohost.com/c/articles/22207098/first-rezoned-condo-openi…

Ron Hershco and the Rush Foundation give New Yorkers a “green” arts facility

In New York City – as in most metropolitan areas – buildings have a significant impact on the environment. Energy used in buildings account for nearly 80% of New York’s greenhouse gas emissions. Buildings also account for most of the city’s water use and waste stream. Additionally, building lots make up half of the city’s land area, thus greatly adding to the landscape of this vibrant city. New Yorkers also spend most of their time indoors; therefore, buildings also contribute to the health of the city’s residents.

In a city with such a huge population, many older buildings, and with so many people in vertical living, it can be quite challenging trying to become more energy efficient and using sustainable building methods. But, owners of both commercial and residential buildings are making a different, one step at a time. Take for instance, the 19th century bank recently donated by New York tycoon Ron Hershco to the Rush Foundation, a non-profit organization created primarily to advance the arts through education.

Mr. Hershco’s architectural team, along with Meridith McNeal, the donated building’s director, are diligently working together to bring to life their combined vision of a green space. The building will boast rooftop gardens as well as green walls, which work similar to green rooftops in providing additional insulation and protection that will reduce energy usage and provide better drainage. In addition to a green space, the bank turned arts education center will also house art galleries, art studio classrooms, artist studios, and more. What a great contribution to art students in the city, as well as to the green movement, creating a better, healthier environment for all!

In keeping with an eco-friendly construction method, the new building was renovated, rather than knocked down, where a lot of material would have to have been disposed of. The upkeep of the new arts center will fall to the Horticultural Society of New York (HSNY), a partner of the Rush Foundation, and a group experienced in environmentally friendly methods of building maintenance.

Mr. Hershco is setting a great example by helping his city be more environmentally friendly. New Yorkers are also doing their part in becoming more green, whether it’s by incorporating sustainable waste reduction methods (recycling and composting), using eco-friendly cleaning supplies, using systems that recycle or reuse water for greater water efficiency, or installing air filtration systems.

Making our city – and our planet – a healthy and safe environment to live and work in is the responsibility of all of us. In order to leave this place a better place for future generations, we need to set a good example of a green ambassador and educate our children in ways to live a more environmentally friendly life. We don’t all have the means or the opportunity to contribute in the scale that Ron Hershco and the Rush Foundation are able to, but we can certainly do our small part in making a huge difference.

http://50.56.218.160/archive/category.php?category_id=5&id=16156

Ron Hershco: Redefining Long Island City with Residential Development

In 2001 thirty-seven blocks were rezoned from industrial to residential-industrial use, in Long Island City, Queens. Developers were allowed to convert various industrial buildings to residential use. Those with a vision for a brighter future, like Ron Hershco, seized the opportunity. In 2006, Hershco developed and opened the area’s first ground-up residential condominium.

With so few residential buildings, Ron Hershco helped pioneer the area with his 12-story project, named Echelon, which boasted 54 units ranging in price from $345,000 to $1,000,000. Since then Long Island City has seen unbelievable development. The amazing development of the last decade or so is fitting for an area marked by changes that have transformed it into the wonderful mix of old and hip it has become today.

The history of Long Island City is characterized by its location and distinct neighborhoods, and by its transportation resources (subway, ferry service, tunnels, and bridges), which has led to major development through the years. In the 1800s, Long Island City was known as Astoria. Wealthy New Yorkers, wanting to escape city life traveled to Astoria and built mansions in the area. In 1870, the villages and hamlets of Astoria, Ravenswood, Hunters Point, and Steinway consolidated and became known as Long Island City. Less than thirty years later, Long Island City became part of New York City as NYC expanded to include Queens. Transportation links opened the door to commercial and industrial development and soon factories lined the East River waterfront.

By the 1970s, Long Island City was experiencing the decline of manufacturing affecting the entire nation. Although it remains NYC’s major industrial area, in the 70’s, a new era of artistic and cultural awakening was begun with the opening of P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center. Artists escaping the high cost of doing business in Manhattan and Brooklyn have set up shop throughout Long Island City.

Since Ron Hershco’s Echelon project, Long Island City has continued to shed industry to make room for greater residential and commercial development. Like any area in flux, housing in Long Island City is a mixed bag, with widely ranging prices, sometimes from one block to the next.  Real estate prices and residential availability are often determined by the neighborhood.  Astoria and Hunters Point have seen great appreciation while others, such as Ravenswood and Dutch Kills, remain off the real estate radar.

The trend initiated by Mr. Hershco and his company continues today. People looking for a more peaceful way of life, away from the city, continue to flock to Long Island City’s neighborhoods where condos are still in high demand. Even in today’s market, condo prices range from about $400,000 for a studio to about $870,000 for a two-bedroom. Some three-bedrooms go for $1,000,000 or more! Although three-bedrooms are hard to come by.

Long Island City is still in the process of transformation. People like Ron Hershco have had a role to play in the changes taking place in the area. Since the official opening of Echelon, residential real estate continues to expand. Long Island City has become home to a dozen subway stations and a handful of bus lines to accommodate the many commuters. Besides the expanding waterfront park, there are many trendy restaurants, art galleries, and much more in way of entertainment and family fun.

http://connection.ebscohost.com/c/articles/22207098/first-rezoned-condo-openi…

Ron Hershco makes a stunning contribution to NYC’s skyline and New Yorkers’ housing needs

In the Spring of 2006, New York developer Ron Hershco broke ground on a $400 million, two-tower project showcasing the tallest new tower construction in Brooklyn. The 400 feet structure led the way as the first ground-up residential high rise construction, following the rezoning of the area to allow larger residential and commercial developments. The glass and brick tower has revolutionized residential construction building, featuring 303 condominium homes, a 50-foot lap pool, squash court, indoor basketball court, and fully-equipped fitness center, to name a few of the amenities offered.

In a microcosm, Mr. Hershco’s project reflects some of the key elements New York City is known for: innovation, pioneer in business ideas and opportunities, and a leader in tall building construction. The history of NYC is replete with success stories of people of vision and integrity who have risen to the top of their game through hard work, unwavering dedication, and an edge of competitiveness. Skyscrapers and competition are nothing new to NYC. Take for instance the city’s race to holding the title of having the tallest and most unusual skyscrapers in history of the city, the country, perhaps the world even.

New York City’s skyline is dominated by skyscrapers, with 5,818 completed high-rises – 92 of which stand taller than 600 feet – and the city is home to the world’s first tall commercial buildings. The first tall office building to go up was the Equitable Building. Within five short years its height was doubled by the New York Tribune Building. Today, the Empire State Building has the title of NYC’s tallest building, with 102 stories and rising to 1,250 feet (not adding in its antenna). The Empire State Building was surpassed only by the 110-story North Tower of the original World Trade Center, which was tragically brought down by terrorist attacks in 2001. Once completed, the new One World Trade Center is expected to surpass the height of the Empire State Building.

Tall buildings have a long and colorful history in the United States. In the 1880s the term “skyscraper” was coined, following the emergence of the first dozen or so tall buildings in the country. This was possible due to a combination of innovations, to include steel structures, elevators, central heating, electrical plumbing pumps, and the telephone. Blazing a trail was The Flatiron Building, one of New York City’s first skyscrapers, built in 1902 by George Fuller’s company. George Fuller helped solve the problem of load bearing capacities of tall buildings.

New York City’s skyscrapers have greatly contributed to its vibrant and rich history. Along with other developers and architects, Mr. Hershco and his development company have been instrumental in helping to write the history of America’s largest city. Without Mr. Hershco’s vision, and others like him, the growing housing needs of New Yorkers could not be met, especially as the population continues to grow.

http://www.plazaconstruction.com/news/whats-new/30

Developer Ron Hershco makes a contribution to NYC’s architectural style

Visitors can get a flavor for the time periods that have come and gone as they stroll the streets of NYC and observe the various building architectural designs of past decades. Developer Ron Hershco and Ismael Leyva Architects have made a contribution to the architectural style that is distinctly New York City with the addition of the 21-story 85 Flatbush Avenue building, featuring 108 units, a swimming pool, and retail space. Additionally, Mr Hershco was responsible for the construction of Oro (a pair of towers: 35 and 40 feet tall, respectively), which was built by Plaza Construction and designed by Leyva. The complex has 515 condominiums.

In 2007 rezoning had opened the door to condominium developers in Brooklyn, but the shift then was away from luxury condos and waterfront high-rises to affordable housing. Some worried that the economic and ethnic diversity that made the borough so popular to begin with would be lost unless smart choices were made in growth and development. Brooklyn was certainly going through a transformation. According to U.S. Census data 9,191 permits were issued for privately owned residential units in 2006, as compared to 9,028 in 2005, the highest among all five boroughs.

The needs and trends of the time have an impact on architecture. New York City was founded in 1664, became the capital of the U.S. from 1785 to 1790, and has been the largest American city since then. With such a large population it comes as no surprise that the city has one of the most diverse architectures in the country, from Art Deco to Postmodernism styles. Two popular buildings display characteristics of Art Deco (1920-1930): The Empire State Building and Chrysler Building. The Woolworth, another popular NYC building, with its stone facade and angular aesthetic, gives us a sampling of Gothic Revival architecture, popular long before Art Deco, in the 1740s.

The Flatiron Building is built in Chicago School design, which was the first style to use steel frames, allowing builders to reach high in the sky. The recognizable wedge shape of this historic building marks the innovation of a skeletal structure that is capable of holding such great weight. Many other cities have borrowed this style to fashion their own smaller versions.

Other architectural designs that can be found in the high-rises of NYC include the Historicist style of the Liberty Tower, Brutalism as evidenced in the Ruppert Tower, and Postmodernism as seen in the Broad Financial Center. Many other classic designs exist among the many NYC buildings. And in modern day, other styles follow the classic ones of yesteryears.

Developers, builders, and architects have an awesome responsibility to the city, its residents, history, and future. People like Mr. Hershco are aware of the conflicting needs being addressed: there are housing needs to accommodate the growing population, environmental concerns to address, political and legal red tape to untangle, staying true to the look and feel of the landscape, and economic issues to keep in mind, among others. The architecture of an area tells a story and developers like Mr. Hershco help write that story.

http://newyork.construction.com/features/archive/2007/05_coverA.asp

BP MARKOWITZ BREAKS GROUND ON FIRST NEW BUILDINGS OF DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN PLAN

 

In photo (from left): Developers Dean Palin and Ron Hershco and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz break ground on new residential buildings at 306 and 313 Gold St. in Downtown Brooklyn.

In photo (from left): Developers Dean Palin and Ron Hershco and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz break ground on new residential buildings at 306 and 313 Gold St. in Downtown Brooklyn.

On Wednesday, April 5, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the first new buildings to be constructed following the Downtown Brooklyn rezoning plan approved in 2004. The event for the two residential towers, 306 and 313 Gold Street at Tech Place, was also attended by developers Ron Hershco and Dean Palin and Downtown Brooklyn Council Executive Director Michael Burke.

“These two buildings represent the first step toward achieving the vision of a new Downtown Brooklyn, with apartments, grocery stores, retail shops, and open space, and foot traffic to restaurants, art galleries, and the amenities that every American city’s downtown offers,” said Borough President Markowitz. “When completed, their innovative design will add glamour and high style to what is already a wonderful experience — entering the city of Brooklyn. When we leave Brooklyn, we say, ‘Oy vey.’ Now, when we enter Brooklyn from the Manhattan Bridge, we will say ‘Oh wow!’ ”

The $400 million project will include a 371,000-square-foot tower, topping out at 40 stories, with 303 condominium homes, at 306 Gold Street; a 250,000-square-foot tower, reaching 35 stories, with 214 condominium homes, at 313 Gold Street; and ground-level retail. The project is designed by the award-winning firm Ismael Leyva Architects.

The Downtown Brooklyn Plan was conceived to transform the area into a 24/7 live-work neighborhood with housing for Brooklynites of every income level, and also includes improved streetscaping to make Flatbush Avenue Extension more pedestrian-friendly

The Generator Is the Machine of the Moment

IN the days that followed Hurricane Sandy, the developer of the luxury condominium 150 Charles Street hunkered down with his team of architects and engineers to rethink the building’s design.

Just steps from the Hudson River, the construction site was partially flooded. “Their mandate was to figure out how the building would have stayed open in a storm like this,” said Steven Witkoff, the developer. “They came back with a list of five things, and we implemented every single one.”

The efforts delayed the project by some six weeks and added as much as $3 million to its cost.

It was one of a number of projects that convened their engineers and construction teams to reconsider their plans after the rising waters rushed over the city’s embankments and into the basements of countless residential buildings across Lower Manhattan.

Now, more than two months after the storm caused millions of dollars in damage, novel and costly waterproofing techniques are being employed, including the addition of backup generators and floodgates, and the relocation of mechanical equipment. The owners of buildings that predate the flooding are also looking at these measures, although retroactive installation is so complex and costly that some may decide not to do anything.

“If you are in the flood zone and you are marketing a new high-end property, it will need to stand up to the test of another superstorm,” said Stephen G. Kliegerman, the executive director of development marketing for Halstead Property. “I think buyers would happily pay to be relatively reassured they wouldn’t be terribly inconvenienced in case of a natural disaster.”

At 150 Charles Street, Mr. Witkoff plans to forestall a blackout by installing two natural-gas-powered generators on the roof to run the fire-alarm system, the emergency egress lighting, the elevators, and electrical and mechanical support equipment. Each apartment will be equipped with at least one electrical outlet connected to the generators. The developer is also ordering five-foot-tall floodgates that can be assembled and installed to encircle the building in a matter of hours. The gates, which fit together like toy Lincoln Logs, are to be stored in the basement.

Finally, Mr. Witkoff is using poured concrete instead of cinder block for the basement walls. And each basement mechanical room will be sealed with watertight submarine-style doors.

“This is the new normal,” said Adam Gordon, the president of Adam Gordon Holdings, which is building a condominium at 560 West 24th Street in Chelsea. “With two hurricanes in two years, this is the new base level for the way people should think about building in New York.”

Mr. Gordon’s Chelsea project will have a waterproof “concrete superstructure” from the basement to the second floor that has 13-foot floodgates; waterproofed rooms with submarine-style doors to protect mechanical and electrical systems; and a generator and a pumping system run on natural gas.

The floodgates are expected to cost Mr. Gordon roughly $100,000 — “not an insignificant cost, but not breathtaking.” He is still pricing the other waterproofing measures. The building, eight units averaging 3,300 square feet each with a ground-floor art gallery, is to be completed in spring 2014.

The developer Time Equities is rethinking the plans for its approximately 62-story condominium at 50 West Street. It is considering replacing a hotel with multilevel retail and, to make the building flood-resistant, moving the mechanical room onto the second or third floor. The developer is also looking at raising the sill height on the ground floor and using floodgates at the entrances.

After the storm, Time Equities hired the Albanese Organization, which built the Visionaire, the Verdesian and the Solaire in Battery Park City, to be its development manager.

“The Albanese Organization are the exact people to handle the project,” said Robert Singer, the director of development and acquisitions for Time Equities, “because Battery Park City was the only place that had electricity during the storm, while the rest of Lower Manhattan went dark.”