Archive for the tag 'brian hanson'

Photo by Erica Sherman

It has been a rumor for as long as I’ve been alive that El Greco, the Sheepshead Bay staple, is for sale, sold, closing, moving, evaporating, burning, building, growing, shrinking and whatever else. Well, for once, one of those is actually true. El Greco, recently named one of the city’s best diners by Gothamist, has put the land it sits on up for sale.

Continue Reading »

Photo by Erica Sherman

The building at 1201 Avenue Z, which for several years has been the home of Chicken Masters – a.k.a. Eat My Chicken – has sold for just under the $1.295 million asking price, Sheepshead Bites has learned.

The building went on the market in early January, and broker Brian Hanson of Massey Knakal Realty Services told us that the new owners plan to turn the fried chicken joint into a pharmacy.

So is this the end of independent fried chicken in Sheepshead Bay? Heck no! Vinnie Mazzone, who owned both the building and the business, said he’ll be relocating by June or July and will fill us in on the details then.

Click to view the full letter to customers

After more than 30 years serving Sheepshead Bay’s parents and educators, The Learning Wheel at 1514 Avenue Z is shutting down. The business’ owner, though, said it’s not by choice: the landlord is pushing them out.

For the first time in recent memory, The Learning Wheel’s window display is empty, save for a large “Store Closing Sale” banner, advertising 50 to 80 percent off all goods. Below it is a letter, pointing the finger squarely at the building owner, Waldorf Realty Co. Here’s an excerpt:

It is certainly not our choice to leave you, our valued customers, without a store upon which so many of you depend. We can imagine how you feel about it. Can you imagine how we feel? We are bring forced out of our home away from home, and we’re all losing our jobs!

If you are angry, sad, or confused, please direct your feedback to our landlord who has caused this unfortunate situation.

Trouble began a year ago, according to Clare Resnick, The Learning Wheel’s owner for the past five years. She said she approached the landlord in September 2009 to renew the lease. The reaction was unexpected, she said.

“They told us they weren’t thinking of renewing the lease,” Resnick said.

Keep reading to find out what the property owner has to say, and what Resnick is doing next.

Condos in Sheepshead Bay - Ave Z and East 17th St

Construction workers removed the scaffolding around the glass-and-steel construct on Avenue Z and East 17th Street this morning, signaling an end to almost two years of work.

Sheepshead Bay Condos - Ave Z and East 17th StreetWorkers on the scene are now tearing up the sidewalks and preparing to pour new concrete. They say the sidewalk will be done within the next couple of days. With a few exceptions on the street level and on the roof, all exterior work appears to be complete, and the crew said the inside of the building was ready as well.

Still, there appears no sign from the building’s residential realtor – Corcoran Group – that they’ve started marketing the building. On the commercial side, the building’s representative, Massey Knakal Realty Services, said last month that they’re close to a deal with a group of local doctors for medical offices. The docs will take all the commercial units, which include a total of 15,700 square feet spread among the basement and first two floors.

Condos on Avenue Z and East 17th Street

The commercial units in the steel-and-glass building being constructed on Avenue Z and East 17th Street may soon be occupied by a group of local doctors for use as a medical center, said the building’s commercial realtor, Brian Hanson of Massey Knakal Realty Services.

A contract has not yet been signed, but Hanson said they’re very close to a deal. The unnamed doctors all have private practices in the area.

The commercial portion of the property includes the basement, ground floor, and second level, totaling more than 15,700 square feet. If all goes smoothly, Hanson expects to close the contract within three to six months.

Above the commercial portion stands 10 residential units on five floors. The residential section of the building is represented by The Corcoran Group, which has not yet started marketing the condos.

The Corcoran Group could not be reached for comment, but Hanson said he believed the condos are approximately 2,000 square feet each. Though he is not sure, Hanson said he believes Corcoran will start marketing the units after Labor Day. Because the Massey Knakal sign is the only one on the building, Hanson said he gets about five to seven calls a week regarding the properties, indicating high consumer interest.

Construction on the location started about a year and a half ago. No word yet on a completion date.


(Photo courtesy of Ray Johnson)

UPDATE: Massey Knakal’s Brian Hanson has told Sheepshead Bites that the buyer of the Courier Life building is a local investor and developer who has not yet decided what will be done with the building. “The new owner will look for the best way to lease the building,” he says. “Whether he will divide it into multiple spaces or leave it as one depends on the interest he receives from tenants.”

Hanson has also informed us that Courier Life is required to leave the building by Spring 2009, but acknowledges that the new owner will be flexible and allow them extra time if the company takes longer to secure a new office. That may not be necessary, though, as a source within Courier Life told Sheepshead Bites that the company will likely move shortly after the New Year.


The Courier Life building, home of the Bay News, has sold for $3.1 million after almost 11 months on the market. Courier Life has not announced the location of its new site, but rumors suggest it will be in downtown Brooklyn in the vicinity of the Metro Tech center, near Jay Street and Willoughby Street. Some, if not all, employees remain in the dark about when and where they will move.

The broker, Brian Hanson, director of sales for Massey Knakal Realty Services, says the deal closed last week, signaling that an end is near to the storied paper’s longtime presence in the Bay area. Located at 1733 Sheepshead Bay Road, the building went on sale last November as its owner, News Corporation, sought to consolidate all of its recently acquired New York local papers in one location. According to a Brooklyn View article, Courier Life’s lease was set to expire this summer.

(Original post published 09/05/08)

Bay News Building Sold!



(Photo courtesy of Ray Johnson)

(Note: this article has been updated here.)

The Courier Life building, home of the Bay News, has sold for $3.1 million after almost 11 months on the market. Courier Life has not announced the location of its new site, but rumors suggest it will be in downtown Brooklyn in the vicinity of the Metro Tech center, near Jay Street and Willoughby Street. Some, if not all, employees remain in the dark about when and where they will move.

The broker, Brian Hanson, director of sales for Massey Knakal Realty Services, says the deal closed last week, signaling that an end is near to the storied paper’s longtime presence in the Bay area. Located at 1733 Sheepshead Bay Road, the building went on sale last November as its owner, News Corporation, sought to consolidate all of its recently acquired New York local papers in one location. According to a Brooklyn View article, Courier Life’s lease was set to expire this summer.

More on the deal to come early next week.

The Bay News did a piece on the artistic renderings for Sheepshead Bay Station Plaza that we first reported here. In quoting P/A Associates’ Carolyn Malinsky, they noted much the same as we did: these “plans” aren’t plans at all – they’re just drawings.

“We are completely still in the pre-development phase. We’re not sure what we are going to build there,” she said.

“You are looking at someone’s thought process,” she said of the sketches. “I am committed to nothing.”

She said no tenants have been signed and there is no time frame for the development.

Apparently, our skepticism of the sketches ever becoming reality are shared by CB15 Chair Theresa Scavo.

When she first saw the renderings, she though just one thing: “Dramatic.”

“I’m not buying it,” she said. “There is a difference between renderings and plans. Those could just be the idea of what they want it to look like.”

Also: Bay News is spreading the rumor that consumer electronics giant, Best Buy, “could be interested in leasing space at the site.” Highly unlikely, methinks.

Someone pointed me to the artistic renderings for Sheepshead Bay Station Plaza, the enormous shopping center being built by Acadia Realty and PA Associates practically right next door to the train station. The architectural firm on the project is GreenbergFarrow.

I’ll let the renderings speak for themselves — the fantasy of it should be obvious to anyone familiar with the Bay. Apparently the artist is a master of the abstract or surreal schools of art.

Anyway, here’s the details from PA Assoc.’s website:

Sheepshead Bay Station Plaza is bringing modern, multi-level retail to the affluent neighborhood of Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. With 240,000 square feet of brand new retail on four floors, and parking for approximately 750 cars, this new shopping experience will have a mix of local and national retailers. Located on Sheepshead Bay Road at Voorhies Avenue, directly across from Exit 8 of the Belt Parkway, the shopping center is also adjacent to the elevated subway station served by the B and Q trains.

From GreenbergFarrow’s website:

Station Plaza at Sheepshead Bay Road will house upward of 335,000 square feet of retail including a number of possible mixed-use additions as well as a multi-level parking deck on this 2.34-acre site. To maximize store frontage and visibility, a proposed private street connecting Voorhies Avenue and Sheepshead Bay Road will be planned into the Station Plaza site.

Note the differing square footage. This might be because none of the plans are real yet. While it’s nice to see what might be there, Carolyn Malinsky of PA Associates told me, “These are just artistic renderings” and the company has no concrete plans yet. No tenants, no finalized architectural plans, no certainty of use. We’re still waiting to hear back from Acadia to see what they have to say.

Here’s what the proposed square footage translates into:

sbstationplaza_02

According to Brian Hanson, who brokered the $20 million sale of the property, the zoning is as-of-right whether the square footage is 335,000 or 240,000, so no variances will be needed. Given the current zoning and FAR for the area, it can be up to 340,000 square footage, all commercial or a mixture of residential and commercial.

Either way, this illustrates enormous plans for the property, and a big change to the view from the subway platform. I don’t know if this is good news or bad news; certainly the current buildings there aren’t very pretty, but is the Bay really clamoring for more retail space?

Ok, maybe not the most profound headline, but I think it captures the situation pretty well. Following my post on Best Western buying up adjacent properties on Emmons Ave., a commenter claiming to exclusively represent the seller on the sale of the four lots 3027-3033 Emmons Avenue which include the Cappuccino on the Bay building, wrote in saying that, while the properties had been sold, Best Western was not the owner. Well, Gene Berardelli of the Sheepshead Bay/Plumb Beach Civic Association has done some digging into the matter and, well, to quote from his findings: “The answer is yes… and no.”

Continue Reading »