PlantShed Building For Sale (Again)

The PlantShed building, located at 209 West 96th Street, is on the market for sale – again – this time asking $14.5 million. PlantShed is a beloved small business on the Upper West Side. The Mourkakos family has been in the flower business for decades, and purchased the building in 2001. They have survived the various roller-coaster cycles of the retail market by adapting their business along the way. One example of this was when they opened the trendy PlantShed Store and Cafe on 87th Street in 2018, and on Prince Street (their newest location). They are known for their quality work and often are featured in lists of the best NYC plant stores.

In August of 2018, CityRealty reported that the PlantShed building on 96th Street would potentially face redevelopment, as it was on the market with Compass for $18.5 million. At that point in time, Upper West Siders were concerned that PlantShed would potentially shut down their 96th Street location.

At the time, Compass was marketing the space to developers as a mixed-use building featuring retail at the street level and condos or rentals on the upper floors. The property did not sell and was taken off the market. It was then listed again this past July with the lowered price of $16,500,000. Just days later, the price dropped again by 12% to $14,500,000. By the beginning of September, they took the building off the market entirely.

Our reader, “Upper West Sider”, recently informed us that 209 West 96th Street is back on the market. The property is now listed by Cushman and Wakefield and the asking price is $14,500,000. The new brokers put together a presentation and offering memorandum for potential buyers, listing a few possible investment strategies. These include a condo development offering a value-add retail repositioning play, and/or developing a community facility for a potential bonus in air rights.

209 West 96th Street was built in 1900 and stands 3 stories high. There is an estimated 24,000 square feet of useable / buildable square-feet.

The building currently functions as a commercial building, but one of the proposals by Cushman and Wakefield is to convert the space into condos and build higher floors.

In their proposal, they say the goal would be “combining the best of old and new; pre-war townhouses and luxury high-rises, allowing the area to maintain an air of charm and history.”

Converting the building into condos could prove to be lucrative in today’s market.

According to Cushman and Wakefield, the average new construction condo sells in the area for roughly $2,249 per square foot. If a developer chose to develop residential condos, the brokers calculated a potential sell out of $12,162,410.

The proposal also outlines a number of different floor plans that could potentially work for the space, one of which includes building a sizable penthouse with a terrace.

Leaving the ground floor a retail space is also one of the options in the presentation. The value-add proposal Cushman and Wakefield put together highlights that an owner could make $617,600 in annual net operating income.

The third option presented is having a community facility utilizing the entire retail space. They calculate a potential for a developers profit of $4,117,414 if they choose this option, due to the bonus in air rights.

The presentation also includes height factor regulations, zoning requirements, tax details, and a list of violations the building currently has. Here’s the listing page which also links to this brochure.

Cushman and Wakefield was contacted for further statements but declined to give any comments. We’ve left a message with the owner as well. We will keep you posted as details become available the sale of the building and the future status of PlantShed’s 96th Street location.

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