Viridian Going Under?

On the way to the L train this morning, I noticed that just about every construction site (along Metropolitan and Wythe/Kent) was busy. Perhaps its a case of in for a dime, in for a dollar, which is where Viridian seems to be. The project is nearly finished, no one is buying, so the developer is declaring bankruptcy and hoping that rentals carry it through to some profit (or that someone ponies up $65 million to buy the whole thing – right).

As in any down (or collapsing) market, there will be a flight to quality. Usually that means established neighborhoods, with strong services, good transportation, good schools, etc. North Brooklyn doesn’t have much of that (yet), but it does have areas of relative quality and buildings of relative quality (architectural, financial and built quality). In the former, I would put the northside generally and in the latter I would put buildings like Northside Piers (on the other hand, there are always exceptions). In a market that stresses fundamentals (location, location, location), Greenpoint is just not the place for half-million-dollar apartments*.

Two big questions – how much will the huge glut of product coming to market at exactly the wrong time affect the market, and what is the financial condition of buildings that do come on line? Anecdotally, the quality of construction on most new condos leaves something to be desired.

* Its times like these that I fondly recall a conversation with a Greenpoint realtor back in 2000 or 2001. She was offering an apartment in the Garden Spot, and I was curious as to exactly where it was. Her response (in lightly accented Polish): “Everywhere in Greenpoint is desirable”.