New views of the Williamsburg waterfront

Eye on Real Estate: Dramatic shoreline vistas at Level BK, a new apartment tower

November 8, 2017 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
This is North Williamsburg's ferry landing, seen from the deck of a boat. The apartment building we're visiting, Level BK, is the tower at left. Eagle photos by Lore Croghan
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For what seems like forever, we’ve been stalking shoreline developments in Williamsburg and Greenpoint.

Isn’t it about time we actually took a look inside one?

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We’ve snapped so many photos of East River waterfront views from docks and various ferry boats. But we’ve never taken shoreline shots from inside any of the new towers, or even seen the views they offer.

So the other day, when we were invited to tour a nearly completed rental-apartment building located at the NYC Ferry’s North Williamsburg stop, we said yes.

The 40-story tower, which is called Level BK, was built by Douglaston Development and designed by architecture firm Stephen B. Jacobs Group. Its address is 2 North 6th Place.

It’s the sixth residential building the developer has constructed at this ferry landing, which is west of Kent Avenue at the end of North 6th Street, if you’re looking for it while on dry land instead of in a boat.

Douglaston Development constructed another rental tower, 1 North 4th Place, at this ferry landing. And it built a condo complex called the Edge. Its north tower is at 34 North 7th St. and its south tower is at 22 North 6th St.

Douglaston Development also constructed the Edge Community Apartments, which are two affordable-housing buildings on North 6th Street.


A pool with a view

But more about Level BK, which has 554 apartments, all of them market-rate.

Tenants started moving into the building on July 15, said Can Nomer of real-estate brokerage MNS, who is Level BK’s leasing director. He was our tour guide.

The first thing we wanted to see was the complex’s swimming pool on the building’s ninth floor. Because it is enclosed with floor-to-ceiling glass, we figured the views would be pretty great.

Glass panels on three sides of the pool can be opened when weather permits to turn it into an outdoor pool.   

We were right about the views.

We could see Manhattan’s World Trade Center, the Lower East Side and iconic Midtown skyscrapers — and also Long Island City’s new apartment towers and not-so-new One Court Square, the office building Citigroup constructed in the late 1980s.

A landscape dotted with landmarks

We also spotted various Greenpoint landmarks — including the spire of iconic 19th-century St. Anthony-St. Alphonsus Church. It was designed by Patrick Charles Keely, who was nicknamed “the Prince of American Catholic Architects.”

In addition to the pool, numerous other tenant amenities including a gym, a demonstration kitchen and a furnished roof deck with barbecue grills are located on Level BK’s ninth floor.

Next we wanted to see some apartments and their views. There are floor-to-ceiling windows in all the units, and a substantial number of them have balconies.

We went to see several gracefully proportioned model apartments on the building’s 11th floor.

From some of their windows, the North Williamsburg waterfront’s piers looked like designs in an architectural drawing instead of something real.

From other windows, we got good looks at two new Wythe Avenue hotels, the Williamsburg and the William Vale.  

Later, we went to an unfurnished apartment on one of Level BK’s higher floors to check out the views. They were really something.




Strong demand for E-line apartments

These days, there are available luxury rentals all over Brooklyn — from Two Trees Management’s 300 Ashland Place in Fort Greene to AvalonBay’s new development in Sheepshead Bay.

With this in mind, after our tour of Level BK, we asked Nomer about demand for apartments at the building.  

About 25 percent of the units have been put onto the rental market since leasing began at the end of June, he said.

“Leasing is going tremendously well,” he said. “The supply [of apartments] was at a level with demand.”

All the available units in the building’s E line have been rented — and prospective tenants are waiting for more of them to become available, Nomer said.

These three-bedroom apartments have a northwest exposure offering views of Midtown, the East River and Greenpoint.

The H line has also been especially popular with renters, he said. The apartments on this line are two-bedroom units with east, north and west exposures. This means they also have views of Williamsburg as it stretches eastwards and far-flung Queens neighborhoods, as well as views of Midtown, the river and Greenpoint.


Shuttle buses when the L train shuts down

In the months to come, Nomer expects the rest of the apartments at Level BK to become available a couple floors at a time.

Construction will likely be completely finished in February.

As is customary with new residential developments throughout New York City, Level BK’s leasing team is offering one month’s free rent for 13-month leases.

On the day of our tour we checked the building’s website, which said available apartments had monthly rents starting at $2,222 for studios, $3,244 for one-bedroom units, $4,089 for two-bedroom apartments and $6,044 for three-bedroom units.

Those are net rents based on 27-month leases with three months of free rent.

Another thing we wondered about was the planned shutdown of L-train service in 2019, which is a vexing issue for Williamsburg residents.

Douglaston Development plans to deal with the shutdown by offering free shuttle-bus service between Level BK and the Marcy Avenue JMZ subway station and the Nassau Avenue G subway station.  


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