Check out these top-dollar DUMBO condo sales

Eye On Real Estate

June 27, 2018 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Mirror, mirror. The DUMBO Clocktower Building and its reflection brighten the view on Water Street. A condo was just sold at the waterfront landmark. Eagle photos by Lore Croghan

Lovely and landmarked or high-rise and modern.

Either way, DUMBO homes command some of the highest prices in Brooklyn.

Keep in mind that when we say a DUMBO home has sold for $4 million, we’re talking about an apartment.

News for those who live, work and play in Brooklyn and beyond

In many beloved neighborhoods in our borough, a sum of half that size will buy you a standalone Victorian house with a yard and a garage or a historic brownstone on a beautiful block.

Stroll with us through cobblestoned waterfront DUMBO, where dazzling Brooklyn Bridge Park serves as the residents’ front yard. We’ll show you several buildings where big-ticket apartment sales have recently closed.


Tick tock tick tock, ka-ching!

The DUMBO Clocktower Building at 1 Main St. is on every real-estate nerd’s list of favorite Brooklyn buildings.

After all, it’s got that crazy triplex penthouse with 14-foot glass clock faces embedded in each of its four walls. A gallery owner, art dealer and collector named Lio Malca bought it for $15 million in 2017. At the time, it was the priciest condo ever sold in Brooklyn.

The landmarked building is located near an entrance to Brooklyn Bridge Park.

The DUMBO Clocktower Building’s condo conversion was the work of Two Trees Management.

The Walentas family’s company, as you surely know, created modern-day DUMBO almost single-handedly by buying picturesque industrial buildings and turning them into office and residential properties.

According to the city Landmarks Preservation Commission’s 2007 designation report about the DUMBO Historic District, 1 Main St. is made of reinforced concrete. Its architectural style is Industrial Neo-Classical.

Constructed in 1914, it was the pride of Gairville — a complex of eye-catching buildings that housed Scottish-born industrialist Robert Gair’s corrugated paper box factories. Gair also rented space in the complex to businesses that belonged to other people.

Anyway. About the most recent transaction in the DUMBO Clocktower Building. A condo on one of its lower floors sold for $4 million in June. City Finance Department records show that the sellers had owned the unit since 1999.

Right this way to Selfie Central

Nearby Washington Street is the selfie capital of the world, or Brooklyn at least.

When you stand in the middle of the road near the intersection of Water Street, you see the Empire State Building framed by the blue-green supports of the Manhattan Bridge on the nearby East River shoreline. Thanks to Instagram, photographers know this whether they’re from Ohio or France or Japan.

Anybody who’s bold enough to drive a car on this block must proceed with extreme caution since selfie snappers act like they own the street.

A couple blocks up from the water’s edge, you’ll find 70 Washington St., another landmarked concrete Gairville property that was converted into a condo building.

It has facades on Front, Washington and York streets and is visible from the Brooklyn Bridge’s pedestrian path.

The 2007 designation report about the DUMBO Historic District says that Industrial Neo-Classical-style 70 Washington St. was constructed in 1911. There’s a clock at the top of it, far more modest than the DUMBO Clocktower’s but nice in any case.

A condo unit at 70 Washington St. sold for $1.69 million in May. It had previously sold for $1.281 million in 2014, and before that, buyers paid $1.22 million for it in 2007, Finance Department records show.

In 2005, the initial purchaser bought the apartment for $941,881 from the condo converter, Finance Department records indicate.


Mr. Bliss’s machine shop and a bend in the road

A century ago, an industrialist with the melodious name of Eliphalet W. Bliss built a machine shop at 51 Jay St. The name that’s now on the landmarked building’s facade is that of Ben Forman & Sons, a metal-stamping firm that was a later occupant.

Recently, co-developers Adam America Real Estate and Slate Property Group did a historically sensitive condo conversion of the building, which has frontage on Plymouth, Jay and Water streets. The sale of one of its penthouses just closed in May. The price was $4.003 million, Finance Department records indicate.

Now, let’s head down Water Street and follow it to its end.

It runs along the edge of Brooklyn Bridge Park, parallel to the East River — and hooks southwards beneath the Brooklyn Bridge to keep following the shoreline.

At the spot where the road bends, there’s a charming landmarked house, 4 Water St.

The red-brick building at right, which is 4 Water St., stands thisclose to the underside of the Brooklyn Bridge.

Two facades of the building are on Water Street because of the path the road takes.

The historic house has been divided into condos.

One of the units changed hands in March. The price was $1.99 million. The sellers had bought it from the condo converter for $997,885 in 2007, Finance Department records show.


Which way to Pearl Street?

Pearl Street is one of those place names that’s used on both sides of the East River, in Lower Manhattan and DUMBO.

Do you draw a blank when you try to remember where the Brooklyn version of it is located?

If so, go to DUMBO’s Archway under the Manhattan Bridge, then walk across the adjacent plaza. In short order, you will wind up at the corner of Pearl and Water streets.

This is where architect Jared Della Valle’s Alloy Development constructed the DUMBO Townhouses a couple years ago. Each condo in this five-unit property is four stories tall.

The unit whose address is 55 Pearl St. was sold in May for $4.6 million. Finance Department records indicate that the seller had bought it from the developer for $4,474,824 in 2015.

A couple blocks away, you’ll see another modern development at 100 Jay St. It’s hard to miss, since it’s a 33-story tower in a neighborhood of mostly low- and mid-rise buildings.

It has frontage on York, Jay and Front streets. The fourth side of the building faces the Manhattan Bridge and has a glassy, curved facade.

The J Condominium, as it’s called, was built more than a decade ago.

In June, an apartment on a high floor was sold for $2.715 million. According to Finance Department records, the sellers bought it from the condo developer for $1,781,937 in 2008.

Here's a glimpse of condo building 100 Jay St. with a Manhattan Bridge ramp in front of it.

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