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Bronx real estate investment caused upswing in building construction, report says

There has been a surge in Bronx real

There has been a surge in Bronx real estate, according to a report from the borough president. Above, Cypress Avenue and East 138th Street in the Bronx. Photo Credit: Yeong-Ung Yang

A Bronx real estate boom helped to create more than 365 buildings in the borough last year, according to a report released Wednesday.

Residents, who say the surge is part of the Bronx’s growing popularity, hope the new developments don’t price out their neediest neighbors.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.’s annual development report found that more than $3 billion was invested in new residential, commercial, hospital and school properties in 2016. That represented a 37% jump from 2015, when there was about $2.3 billion in real estate investment.

“People are seeing that we’re not the Bronx of yesteryear,” Diaz said. “We’re more than just the Yankees. We’re more than just the zoo.”

Bronx Community Board 7, which covers neighborhoods such as Fordham and Bedford Park, had the most real estate investment last year, according to the report. Adaline Walker-Santiago, chair of Board 7, said she has seen more residents and building owners take interest in setting a footprint because of the reduction in crime, improved park space, new restaurants and upgraded infrastructure, such as elevators at the East 149th Street/Grand Concourse subway station.

“It’s a lovely place and we also have a good mixed neighborhood,” she said.

Most of the real estate investments went into residential construction, as 239 new Bronx houses and apartment buildings were created. Although Walker-Santiago said there was a listing for an apartment in her neighborhood that rented for as much $2,000 a month, she said she wasn’t too concerned about possible gentrification. Across the borough, 73% of residential units were subsidized housing.

She noted that developers have implemented changes, like more parking access and greenery, to fit the neighborhood’s needs.

“We’re trying to keep our area beautiful and affordable. We ask the developers to be mindful ... and I think they’re getting our message,” Walker-Santiago said.

Bronx market

Here are some stats on the Bronx real estate market in 2016, according to the Bronx Borough President’s Office:

  • Total investment: $3.3 billion
  • Residential investment: $1.7 billion
  • Commercial investment: $1.3 billion
  • Other investment: $228 million
  • Number of new buildings: 365
  • Residential addresses: 239
  • New development area: 14.2 million square feet
  • Residential area: 7.23 million square feet
  • Commercial area: 4.63 million square feet
  • Schools and other properties: 2.34 million square feet


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