Downtown

Sittin’ on top of the world – at 388 Bridge St., Brooklyn’s tallest building

February 26, 2014 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
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Eye On Real Estate

UPDATE: May 19

Apartments at Brooklyn’s tallest building, 388 Bridge St., have been renting at the rate of one per day, according to an announcement from the Stahl organization, its developer, and leasing agent Halstead Property Development Marketing. At this point, 50 % of the rental units are leased. Rents range from $2,700 per month for a studio on the 20th floor to $6,290 per month for a two-bedroom apartment on an upper floor.

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Here’s Brooklyn as you’ve never seen it before – nobody has, except for construction crews and a handful of real estate executives.

These dramatic photos were taken at the top of Brooklyn’s new tallest building, 388 Bridge St., which the Stahl Organization is putting the finishing touches on.

Eye on Real Estate and photographer colleague Rob Abruzzese donned hardhats for a rooftop tour of the developer’s 53-story rental-apartment and condo tower – where the first renters moved in on Tuesday.

The skyscraper replaces the Brooklyner on nearby Lawrence Street as the borough’s tallest building.

The wind roared through the rooftop viewing terrace – but no matter. Down below, we saw Borough Hall, the Court Street office tower we call home and the brownstones of Brooklyn Heights. In the harbor, Lady Liberty lifted her torch.

An 8-foot glass windscreen will be installed, so the wind won’t be a problem when residents use the terrace.

Inside a penthouse, we got a more leisurely look in this direction, and took in the towers of Lower Manhattan.

“I brought one of the bigger landlords of Brooklyn Heights here and he said, ‘With that kind of view, I could never go to sleep,’” said Bill Ross, managing director of Halstead Property Development Marketing, which is handling rentals – and condo sales once the offering plan gets state approval.

Asking prices for the 144 units (which are on the building’s top 20-some floors) will start at approximately $615,000 for studios and around $720,000 for one-bedrooms and go as high as about $6 million for a penthouse.

The other views from on high were jaw-dropping, too. From one condo terrace, Midtown skyscrapers were on display – along with downtown Brooklyn’s new residential towers, DUMBO’s iconic old buildings, the Williamsburg waterfront and bridges galore.

From another condo terrace, we gazed on Boerum Hill, the clock-tower-capped former Williamsburgh Bank building with Barclays Center beside it, the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and the glittering Atlantic Ocean.

From the fourth side of the tower, we saw downtown Brooklyn, Fort Greene with its park with the Prison Ship Martyrs Monument, plus Clinton Hill, Bedford-Stuyvesant and beyond.

There are 234 rental apartments on floors 7 to 31, 20% of them affordable units, for which the application process has closed. Market-rate rentals are $2,540 per month for studios to $6,290 per month for two-bedroom units. Since leasing of the market-rate units began in January, 15% of them have been taken, Ross said.

A thoughtful design detail: the massive windows are Viracon glass units – two quarter-inch-thick panes with a half-inch of air space between them. They cut outdoor noise heard inside the apartments by 30 decibels. For an idea of their quieting effect, the roar of a jackhammer two meters away is 100 decibels, and the sound of human conversation one meter away is 60 decibels.

For Brooklynites who have views of 388 Bridge St., the skyscraper’s crown lights up at night, sometimes in a busy light show, other times in a single bright hue.

“I told the electricians to have fun – we’re experimenting,” Stahl vice president Roger Fortune said.  Eventually there will be a calendar of specific colors to honor various charities.

So how does Fortune feel now that the first residents are moving in?

“It’s about time,” he said with a smile. Site acquisition started in 2007, he explained, and construction stopped from 2008 until 2012 because of recession and the redesign of the originally all-condo tower.