View Full Version : Signature Urban Properties' Huge Mixed-Use Development in the South Bronx

October 27th, 2011, 08:02 PM
Here is a thread for renderings, photos, news and commentary on Signature Urban Properties huge new mixed-use development in West Farms Square and Crotona Park East. To start with, a question: Does anyone have the exact footprint of this development?

From Crain's New York Business (http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20111025/REAL_ESTATE/111029935)

Huge Bronx housing project clears hurdle
One of the biggest re-zonings in the Bronx in decades clears way for an affordable-housing development with 1,325 units. Former Council Speaker Gifford Miller is developer's co-founder.

By Amanda Fung (http://www.crainsnewyork.com/personalia/19/Amanda+Fung) @amandafung (http://twitter.com/amandafung)
October 25, 2011 1:00 p.m.

http://www.crainsnewyork.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/storyimage/CN/20111025/REAL_ESTATE/111029935/AR/Signature-Urban-Properties-Gifford-Miller.jpg&q=80&MaxW=320 (http://www.crainsnewyork.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/storyimage/CN/20111025/REAL_ESTATE/111029935/AR/Signature-Urban-Properties-Gifford-Miller.jpg&q=100&MaxW=800)DattnerArchitects[+] Enlarge (http://www.crainsnewyork.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/storyimage/CN/20111025/REAL_ESTATE/111029935/AR/Signature-Urban-Properties-Gifford-Miller.jpg&q=100&MaxW=800)
Ground is expected to be broken on Signature Urban Properties' mixed-use, affordable-housing development by the end of next year.

A huge mixed-use, affordable-housing development slated for the West Farms and Crotona Park East sections of the Bronx has cleared a crucial hurdle, according to the project's developer, Signature Urban Properties.

The proposed $350 million project will be located on roughly 5-acre plots on both sides of the Cross Bronx Expressway that had to be rezoned to residential use from light industrial for the project to go forward. Earlier this month, the City Council unanimously approved the rezoning of the entire area, according to Gifford Miller, one of the developer's co-founders, who is best known as the former City Council speaker. The rezoning is one of the largest in the Bronx in decades. Signature plans to build 10 new buildings consisting of 1,325 units of housing, with at least 663 units of affordable housing and 46,000 square feet of retail space.

Ground is expected to be broken by the end of next year. The mixed-use development will create an estimated 412 permanent jobs in the area.

“We are trying to activate an industrial area that is wildly underutilized,” said Mr. Miller, who ran for mayor in the Democratic primary in 2005. “This will be a transformative project.”

The development has been more than four years in the making and is Signature's first project in the city since it was founded five years ago. The company spent the past four and half years acquiring and assembling 215,000 square feet of land in the industrial area, which is accessible via the 2, 5 and 6 subway lines, as well as by bus. The site, mostly vacant, still has one auto-body shop that must be relocated, said Mr. Gifford. He added that a hot dog factory on the site was already in the process of moving to Florida, when Signature acquired the property.

“There's a high vacancy rate in the entire rezoned area,” he added.

Signature began the lengthy Urban [sic- should be "Uniform"] Land Use Review Process to get the area rezoned three years ago. The developer has also proposed to donate a portion of its property to the School Construction Authority for a new 540-seat elementary school. As part of the plan, the project will also feature two landscaped public spaces, and a children's playground.

"I am happy that [Signature Urban Properties] will be committing to constructing a balanced, mixed-income community while bringing a significant number of new jobs to the Bronx,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., in a statement. “I must congratulate Signature Urban Properties and their partners for putting together a development plan that will transform a formerly industrial area into a vibrant, environmentally-friendly, balanced residential community."

The next step is to obtain financing for the project, according to Mr. Miller, who believes the financing environment for ground-up development will continue to improve. “We recognize that you can't build 1,300 units overnight. This is a long term commitment,” he said. “We hope to be able to work with the city, the Department of Housing Preservation and Development and the city Housing Development Corp. to acquire financing for the first couple of buildings.”

Read more: http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20111025/REAL_ESTATE/111029935#ixzz1c1tkYdag