Chetrit plans Upper East Side condominium development

Joseph Chetrit and 260 East 72nd Street (Getty Images, Google Maps)

On the heels of one of New York’s worst months for new development sales in years, the Chetrit Group is betting buyers will show up.

The developer requested the construction of a 20-story condominium project at 260 East 72nd Street on the Upper East Side. The Chetrit development will span 190,000 square feet and will include 53 apartments and 3,400 square feet of retail space.

While plans have been filed for a corner lot, Chetrit also has adjacent vacant land, which once housed a church, and two lots that connect to East 71st Street. Together, the assembly covers 14,000 square feet.

The deposits mark the culmination of years of effort by Chetrit to piece together plots for development at the corner of Second Avenue and 72nd Street, an intersection that has benefited perhaps more than any other from the Second Avenue Metro extension.

The lot is near the 72nd Street station, added during the first phase of the Second Avenue subway expansion. Researchers from New York University and Columbia found that extension increased $6 billion property valuewhile an analysis by Crain’s showed that apartment prices along the corridor increased by a third.

The Chetrit lot is in a transit land use district, so it may qualify for special zoning bonuses.

In 2015, Chetrit Group bought land on the corner of SL Green for $47.3 million. She refinanced two plots with a $116.5 million loan from G4 Capital Partners. Part of this loan was secured by Chetrit’s luxury condos at 49 Chambers Street, which SL Green has also funded.

Chetrit won’t be able to start building right away. A partial stop-work order exists at the site because construction workers were found there without helmets or harnesses, according to city records.

Not that Chetrit is rushing to launch sales: In October, sales of new developments in Manhattan dropped to 36 percent below pre-pandemic levels.

But condo development always comes with risks — and opportunities — in that the market can change over the years between initial investment and returns.

Rental projects have the advantage of being able to adjust rents according to changing conditions. But they lost the 421a tax abatement in June. The property tax abatement for condominiums and cooperatives remains in effect.

Chetrit, as always, declined to comment.

Lora M. Andrew