Views of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway and Beyond

Posted September 15, 2018 3:50 p.m. EDT

NEW YORK — With the windows open at the Cobble Hill House, the sound of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, which the new condo building overlooks, is — delicately put — a constant roar.

But close the triple-glazed, parlor-style windows and the condo units at 78 Amity St., at the corner of Hicks Street, transform into quiet, light-filled spacious homes with fantastic East River views, just beyond the expressway.

“Incredible, right?” said Deborah Rieders, a broker at the Corcoran Group, who is marketing the property. The firm launched sales this week for the 27-unit building, which includes one- to three-bedroom homes priced between $725,000 to $3.675 million.

Developed by Vega Management, the five-story brick building was designed by CWB Architects and the interior designs were done by the Meshberg Group.

All the residences, scheduled for occupancy by the end of the year, will come with white oak herringbone floors, Carrara marble kitchen countertops, and Gaggenau appliances. There are five penthouse units with private terraces.

Each unit will have access to a basement storage unit and underground parking spaces can be purchased for $150,000. The building will have a common roof deck facing the Cobble Hill Historic District, a fitness center, a children’s playroom, and a virtual doorman. The sole commercial space, facing Hicks Street, is already occupied by the Brooklyn Preschool of Science, operated by Carmelo Piazza, better known as Carmelo the Science Fellow. (The preschool refers to this site as its Brooklyn Heights location, it also has schools on Wykoff Street in Cobble Hill and in Park Slope.)

Rieders said monthly common charges for a medium-sized three-bedroom unit (about 1,450-square-feet) would be about $600, which is low relative to many other high-end condo buildings that charge thousands of dollars in monthly fees.

“This building has simple, classic finishes and aims to attract clients that might be priced out of certain buildings because of really high common charges,” she said. “It’s high-end, in a low-key way.”

This project is also not the only development under construction in the northwestern pocket of Cobble Hill. Parts of River Park, a condo complex of several buildings on sites spread out over several blocks that once belonged to Long Island College Hospital, have already come to market.

At the Polhemus Residences, a prewar building on the corner of Amity and Henry streets that was converted to 17 condo units, only one $3.5 million, three-bedroom unit is left for sale, according to Alexander Maroni, a Douglas Elliman broker. Half of the eight adjacent townhomes, priced between just under $6 million to $8.4 million, that are collectively called the Pohlemus Townhouses, are also under contract.

Brokers said that new, turnkey homes built in Cobble Hill are selling quickly, in part because of its proximity to Brooklyn Bridge Park. “The park is like the Brooklyn version of the High Line,” Maroni said.

Phase two of River Park involves three buildings. A 15-story, 25-unit condo building at 347 Henry St. will likely be completed by the end of 2019, according to Jonathan Landau, chief executive of Fortis Property Group, the developer. The majority of the homes will be three-bedroom units, catering to families with children. The building will have an outdoor swimming pool and two outdoor decks.

Landau said he hoped 91 Pacific St., a 36-story tower with 103 units will be completed by early 2021. This building will have a mix of studio to four-bedroom homes and a 25,000-square-foot common roof deck.

There will also be a 19-story, 48-unit condo building at 350 Hicks St., at the corner of Atlantic Avenue, with parking spaces and a private early education school on the lower floors. This building will be tailored to have “a livelier feel for a younger clientele,” with a cafe in the lobby area that will turn into a bar at night, Landau said.

The current emergency room operated by New York University Langone Health at 83 Amity St. will move into a new building on Atlantic Avenue that will be built by Fortis. Once the new medical facility is up and running, a new building with a private K-12 school on the lower levels and a condo tower above will be built on the current site, Landau said.

The future of the former hospital site has been contentious since the state announced the hospital’s closure in 2013. Most recently, the Cobble Hill Association and local politicians have helped form a construction task force that meets every four to six weeks to monitor construction and address neighborhood concerns.

Amy Breedlove, president of the nonprofit, said she believed the task force has helped keep Fortis and government agencies like the Department of Transportation and Buildings accountable.

“We would like the neighborhood’s concerns to be heard and met,” she said, describing the talks so far as productive.

She estimated Cobble Hill has a population of about 8,000 people, and River Park, once finished, will add another 2,000 or more. “You have to look at the impact on the neighborhood over the long term,” she said.

Landau said he believed “the meetings have opened up a line of communication between all parties,” and he added: “There’s always a back and forth and differences in opinion, but I think we’re in a more stable place and it’s my job to be attentive about neighborhood concerns.”