May 31, 2024

MAG Partners tops out construction on nearly 400 units of Manhattan housing on the same day

300 East 50th Street Topping Out Coverage

Less than five years after real estate executive MaryAnne Gilmartin founded her own firm, MAG Partners, and a little over a year after leasing launched at Ruby, its first ground-up project, this amenity-rich, biophilic project has reached 85% leased. However, the woman-owned real estate firm has not rested on its laurels but stayed rather busy: Construction has topped out on not one but two forthcoming projects, 335 Eighth Avenue in Chelsea and 300 East 50th Street in Turtle Bay, on the same day.

300 East 50th Street Topping Out Coverage

Just as Ruby was named in honor of acclaimed fashion designer Ruby Bailey, these projects are expected to be named after influential women. These will be announced at a later date, and leasing on both projects will likely commence in 2025. In the meantime, we take a look at the forthcoming buildings that are set to bring nearly 400 units of mixed-income housing to Manhattan.

MAG Partners founder MaryAnne Gilmartin speaking at ceremony (Michael Young)

300 East 50th Street Topping Out Coverage

300 East 50th Street, Turtle Bay
Developed in partnership with Safanad and Global Holdings | Design by BKSK Architects 23 stories | 194 units

Rendering of 300 East 50th Street (BKSK Architects) | Photo taken late May 2024 (CityRealty)

50th Street Team – Danny Jumblatt, JJ Ofer, MaryAnne Gilmartin, Andy D_Amico, Todd Poisson, Kevin Wang, Reggie Kronstadt 300 East 50th Street is taking shape on the southeast corner of Second Avenue and East 50th Street, where it will make a dramatic statement between its towering height, detailed masonry, neutral-toned facade, and setbacks of varying heights. Permits indicate that there will be between ten to twelve apartments per floor on levels 2-15, and only five to seven apartments per floor on levels 16-23. The project also calls for five new trees to be planted on the two street frontages. As footings were laid just before the 421a tax abatement program expired in June 2022, 300 East 50th Street qualifies for the benefits and has designated 30% of the units inside as permanently affordable. All residents will enjoy access to amenities like a fitness center, a lounge, a bike room, a courtyard, and a roof deck.

300 East 50th Street, late May 2024 (CityRealty)

335 Eighth Avenue, Chelsea

Developed in partnership with Safanad and MetLife Investment Management | Design by COOKFOX
7 stories | 188 units

Rendering of 335 Eighth Avenue (COOKFOX)

Eighth Avenue Team – Ryan Dziedziech, Sara Queen, Andy D’Amico, MaryAnne Gilmartin, Ambur Nicosia, Danny Jumblatt, Rick Cook (Photo: Michael Young)

Just up the street from Ruby, MAG Partners has reunited with that project’s designer to replace the aging Penn South affordable housing cooperative with a new building designed to Passive House and LEED Gold certifications. COOKFOX is known for its biophilic designs, and founder Rick Cook describes the project as “wellness-focused, nature-connected residences for a diverse new community.” Renderings depict a modern take on historic Chelsea character.
Just like at 300 East 50th Street, 30% of units at 335 Eighth Avenue have been reserved for low- and middle-income New Yorkers. In addition to the new housing units, the project will bring new commercial space to this stretch of Chelsea just south of Penn Station, including a 23,000-square-foot Lidl supermarket. Moreover, at the topping-out ceremony, MAG Partners unveiled “Panoramica,” an original painting by Penn South resident Joseph Meloy that will hang on the fence for the duration of construction.

335 Eighth Avenue, late May 2024 (CityRealty)
May 31, 2024

300 East 50th Street Tops Out In Midtown, Manhattan

Construction has topped out on 300 East 50th Street, a 23-story residential building in MidtownManhattan. The $200 million project was developed in partnership between MAG PartnersGlobal Holdings, and Safanad, and was designed by BKSK Architects. The 170,000-square-foot building was constructed on an assemblage of multiple properties around the corner of East 50th Street and Second Avenue.

The 275-foot-tall structure is planned to yield 194 dwelling units with 30 percent designated as affordable housing under the Affordable NY program. The building will also offer 4,888 square feet of ground-floor retail space.

Photograph of MaryAnne Gilmartin, by Michael Young

Amenities at 300 East 50th Street will include a fitness center, a rooftop deck, and bicycle storage.

“300 East 50th Street is a prime example of urban living,” said Eyal Ofer, chairman of Global Holdings. “The building offers a diverse unit mix, robust amenities, and all the elements of an elevated lifestyle. As we continue to expand our NYC luxury residential portfolio and work with the best partners in real estate, we’re proud to join MAG Partners and Safanad on this project and look forward to opening the doors to residents next year.”

The closest subways from the property are the E and M trains, a six-minute walk away at the Lexington Avenue-53rd Street station.

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May 30, 2024

Just In Time For Moving Season, Homes With View Of Blue

Baltimore Peninsula’s Rye House Rooftop, with the city’s Patapsco River in the background.

A few years ago, Zillow estimated waterfront homes are worth more than twice the value of homes in general. Access to the water for boating, swimming, fishing and kayaking accounts for some of that premium, as does the presence of waterfront amenities, such as beaches, boat launches and marinas. A more profound factor may be in play, too.

Biophilia is the term for the innate drive felt by humans to be close to nature. According to the National Institutes of Health, there’s both a biological and genetic link between humans and nature.

Biophilic design attempts to create connections within the built environment between the natural world and the humans who occupy built spaces.

The “14 Patterns of Biophilic Design” have been identified to help architects and developers leverage opportunities to bring building design and nature together. Pattern 5 is “Presence of Water.” Research has shown a number of health and wellbeing benefits are associated with proximity to water. They include reduced heart rate and blood pressure, decreased stress, a greater sense of tranquility and improved concentration and perception, leading to the conclusion that the regular sight, sound, and feel of crystalline water can leave us with an increased sense of wellbeing.

With the advantages of living near aqua as clear as natural spring water, can it be long before the waterfront living premium isn’t just double average homes, but maybe triple?

Consider leveraging the insightful truths of Pattern 5 by exploring these waterfront properties, whose “view of the blue” could just enhance your feeling of wellbeing.

Baltimore Peninsula

This 14-million-square-foot, master-planned enclave in South Baltimore, developed by MAG Partners and MacFarlane Partners, overlooks the Patapsco River and features a trio of residential rental communities: Rve House, 250 Mission and 2460 Terrapin. Renters can select from studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments and take advantage of amenities that include rooftop terrace lounges with water views.

“We have witnessed resident desires shift greatly over the past few years to prioritize mental and physical health,” says MaryAnne Gilmartin, MAG Partners founder and CEO. “Not only are they seeking pristine indoor amenities, but also an abundance of open waterfront greenspace right at their fingertips . . . Baltimore Peninsula is unique due to its setting on the Patapsco River, with miles of waterfront trails and an array of free wellness classes offered on an ongoing basis.”

Greenpoint Landing

The Park Tower Group-developed project is a 22-acre site stretching a half mile along the East River waterfront in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. When complete, Greenpoint Landing will feature approximately 5,500 market-rate and affordable residential units, along with five acres of public open space, including a waterfront esplanade and public pier. It is a reflection of the popular modern saying that while for decades, America turned its back on its rivers, today it’s facing straightforward toward them.

“Once an industrial waterfront walled off from the community, the area is now one of the most sought-after residential spaces in New York,” says Marian Klein, president, Park Tower Group.

The Yards

A Brookfield Properties development in Washington, D.C., The Yards when complete will feature two dozen buildings on 48 waterfront acres in the Navy Yard district along the Anacostia River. The project will deliver as many as 3,400 residences, 500,000 square feet of retail, dining and services, a flagship 225-room Thompson hotel, 1.8 million square feet of office and a waterfront park.

“The Yards is unlike any neighborhood in D.C., blending all the perks of urban living with an abundance of green space and waterfront serenity,”’ says Bobby Swennes, head of Brookfield Properties’ Mid-Atlantic and Southeast Region.

One Domino Square

An historic Domino Sugar Factory on the Williamsburg, Brooklyn East River banks has been transformed into three Selldorf Architecture-designed residential towers, including One Domino Square, featuring condos and rental units. “A leading piece of feedback we have received from interested prospective residents is a desire to live close to the water,” says Rebecca Epstein, managing director of residential leasing at Two Trees Management. “Williamsburg in particular offers a balanced blend of waterfront access, plenty of green space at Domino Park and urban vibrancy.”

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May 14, 2024

POWER 100 – #45 MaryAnne Gilmartin

Founder and CEO of MAG Partners

Last year’s ranking: 50

This market feels like it requires magic to get deals done — and that makes MaryAnne Gilmartin something of a magician. Gilmartin’s MAG Partners managed to finance, capitalize and break ground on two apartment building projects in 2023 — in a race against the expiration of the 421a development incentive in New York City.

In Manhattan’s Turtle Bay, MAG partnered with Safanad and Global Holdings on the equity side, and secured a $95 million construction loan from Bank OZK to build a $200 million, 24-story apartment building, scheduled to open in 2025.

Near Penn Station, MAG was selected to build a $150 million co-op building by affordable housing co-op Penn South. The firm partnered with Safanad and MetLife on the equity side, and secured a $73 million construction loan, also from Bank OZK. 

“We’re the poster child for doing the impossible,” said Gilmartin. 

Gilmartin founded MAG Partners five years ago, after spending 22 years at Forest City, where she helped develop a wide range of properties, including most notably the Barclays Center arena in Brooklyn. 

The plucky way that she and her small team completed these more recent deals is a reflection of their ethos, said Gilmartin. As a small, newer and woman-led company, they couldn’t rely on deep pockets or generational wealth to get deals done.

MetLife, for example, usually wouldn’t even look at a company of her size. “Usually MetLife would want to see a very large portfolio. They’re used to more zeros,” said Gilmartin. “When we spoke to them, they were interested in de-risking and doing bite-size business, so they were more open to it.” 

MAG Partners also completed and refinanced Ruby, the firm’s first ground-up apartment development in Manhattan. Outside of New York, the firm is progressing on the Baltimore Peninsula megadevelopment, a 235-acre project in partnership with the family office of Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank that will remake an entire neighborhood on Baltimore’s waterfront. Currently, 1.1 million square feet of office and retail space is already open, out of a total 14 million square feet of entitlement.

As a Brooklynite, Gilmartin loves and resonates with the Baltimore spirit, which really came to the fore after the recent collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge. “We love Baltimore because it has that kind of grit and come-from-behind spirit that we like — because it’s similar to Brooklyn,” she said.

May 10, 2024
Commercial Obserever

Tex-Mex Flair and Karaoke Headed to Baltimore Peninsula

Baltimore’s Rye Street Market will soon see a new restaurant option along with a dedicated karaoke bar.

The MAG Partners and MacFarlane Partners-led Baltimore Peninsula development group has inked two leases with Tex-Mex restaurant concept Urbano and karaoke purveyors Live-K, for a combined 12,300 square feet at the open-air retail and food plaza just a block from the edge of the Patapsco River.

Located in Baltimore’s Port Covington neighborhood, Baltimore Peninsula, as the development was branded in 2022, is a 235-acre project that will feature some 14 million square feet of mixed-use space, 2.5 miles of restored waterfront and 40 acres of parks and green space once fully completed.

Urbano, led by managing partner and executive chef Chad Sparrow and founding partner Larry Walston, is taking 4,500 square feet of space, while LIVE-K, with its 15 rooms for private karaoke parties, will take 7,800 square feet. Live-K’s new Baltimore joint follows the opening of its sister location in Washington, D.C.’s Wharf District in late 2022.

“It’s special to place our footprint in Baltimore and offer our innovative concept in a place that is close to our roots,” Sparrow said in a statement. “The development and vision of Baltimore Peninsula perfectly align with our concept, passion and growth plan.”

Retail leasing for Rye Street Market is handled by MAG Partners’ Sam Spikell and Ed Guiltinan, along with Segall Group’s Andy Segall and Jonathan Garritt. Constantine Gogos of Papadopoulos Properties represented Urbano in lease negotiations, while Shang Wang of Wang Enterprises represented Live-K.

“Our retail strategy at Baltimore Peninsula is driven by the goal of creating a vibrant, dynamic neighborhood. Already, the community’s retail provides critical amenities, exciting activities and enticing food and beverage destinations,” said MAG Partners founder and CEO MaryAnne Gilmartin in a statement.

The new leases continue a string of activity in Baltimore Peninsula over the past year. The development announced 15 leasing deals in December, together totaling 65,000 square feet, with the likes of the Baltimore Ravens, investment firm Sagamore Ventures, Volo Sports and Jersey Mike’s, to name a few. In March, CFG Bank moved into its new 97,000-square-foot headquarters at 2455 House Street at the peninsula.

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