A new sweeping upscale development hits Tribeca By [Wickham Boyle] Tribeca is no stranger to high-end development?after all, Forbes Magazine dubbed it the richest ZIP code in New York City in 2006. Even though it fell to a not-so-shabby seventh in the most recent listings, one can't help but wonder how many high-end buildings can fit in one small neighborhood. Real estate developers and agents hawking lush wood floors, top-of-the-line finishing touches and swank addresses must firmly believe there is still room for many more clambering for a place at the table. Gloria Sokolin, with the Fox Residential Group, is one of two agents representing one such new property, at 50-52 Laight St. She said this offering was created by joining two former garage buildings and giving them a new brick facade and a limestone base. The renderings, at least, look as if the amalgamated building has been below Canal Street since the 19th century. Sokolin said that the property's owner/developer is Laurel Capital LLC, with a Japanese lead investor. They are the same folks who developed 25 N. Moore St. and bought a few properties on Mercer Street when the New Museum decamped?they have credentials and roots in the area. The group first purchased one garage, then Sokolin knocked on the neighboring door to ask, "Can we make a deal?" Poof, it was good-bye garage, hello upscale real estate. Sokolin says the previous owner's response was that for the right price they were happy to sell?one hopes they traded in their wrenches and tire irons for a beach somewhere. "This was never meant to be a modern monstrosity, but rather a historic conversion," said Sokolin. It is a conversion from wholecloth, as the garage buildings were reconstructed to resemble historic buildings like those that dot the landscape. The new plans are well-wrought, restful and luxurious, with eight windows facing the glorious southern light. The development will have units ranging from 1,945 to 2,761 square feet, each home designed to blend 19th-century elegance with the modern trend to sophistication and technological ease. The homes are priced from just under $3 million to $6.9 million for the penthouse. Sokolin extolled the unusual feature of a virtual doorman, one who "has key fob activations for doors and private elevator landings." Other features are Wi-Fi throughout, walnut floors and the usual high-end appliances, from stovetops to in-home washer-dryers. These are among some of the newest homes offered in Tribeca, featuring stunning light, great rooms, a floor plan for parties and a neighborhood where takeout abounds and strollers and town cars compete with old-school artist residents for space.
Renderings of the penthouse at 50-52 Laight St. (above) and the building's exterior (left). PHOTO COUTESY OF FOX RESIDENTIAL