Located between 9th and 10th Avenues in Hell’s Kitchen, 459 West 44th Street is a green condominium conversion that offers three duplex units starting just north of $2 million apiece. It’s a much higher price point than many of the boutique green condominium projects that we’ve been following here at gbNYC, but developer Van Velle recently profiled the project in Businesweek and provided some interesting thoughts about the role of green design features in the current real estate climate.
“We recognized that, in a declining real estate market, the demand would be for value- for homes built to last,” Mr. Velle said. “That’s why we decided to go sustainable. We scrapped the previous plan, which sacrificed quality for quantity, and instead proposed three luxury condos constructed with sustainable products and efficient technology.”
Calling it a swap of quantity for quality, Mr. Velle purchased the property from a contractor that had abandoned a prior project in the middle of demolition operations at the four-story structure. He retained architect Allen Strasen and, although the project does not appear to be seeking any third-party certification for its green design efforts, incorporated a number of sustainable features that include low-VOC insulation, paints, and sealants and an efficient HVAC system.
Corcoran has active listings for two of the units; one at $2,495,000.00, the other at $2,950,000.00. The more expensive apartment is on the ground floor and features a 20′ x 17′ backyard space. According to StreetEasy, the price on that unit has been dropped twice (most recently just a few days ago by $300,000.00) after an initial listing back in January at $3,500,000.00.