Carin's features Rendering of 185 Flatbush Ave.

November 11, 2014

BY: Crains' New York

Montroy Andersen DeMarco conceptualized this image for a potential new development along Flatbush Avenue Extension in Brooklyn, NY. 

Downtown B'klyn Mobil station hits market at $27M

NOVEMBER 11, 2014

Gasoline prices are plummeting, but the value of the land this filling station sits on has soared. Its Flatbush Avenue Extension site could house a building of nearly 75 apartments.

A downtown Brooklyn gas station astride its own triangle-shaped block is hitting the market for $27 million. With that asking price translating to $425 per buildable square foot, any eventual buyer will likely build either condos or a hotel to make the project work.

The Mobil station is located at 185 Flatbush Ave. Extension, on a plot bounded by Johnson and Gold streets, and could accommodate 63,400 square feet of development. That number could be bumped up to roughly 76,000 buildable square feet through the city's Inclusionary Housing Program, however, meaning the developer could either provide affordable housing on-site or purchase development rights from another nearby affordable project. A building of that size could include nearly 75 apartments.

But with nearly 6,000 rental units in the pipeline in downtown Brooklyn and the surrounding neighborhoods and less than 400 available for purchase, Sean Kelly of CPEX Real Estate, who is marketing the site, thinks the paucity of condominiums could work in the purchaser's favor.

"There has been a huge demand for buyers looking for condo units with good access to transportation," he said, noting that the property is within walking distance of 11 subway lines and that the bustling area is still a bargain compared to many Manhattan neighborhoods.

Alternatively, Mr. Kelly says, a hotel would also be well-suited for the property, given there are only about 4,000 rooms for Brooklyn's population of 2.6 million people.

Part of the appeal of the site is that, because it stands alone, it has light and air on all sides, meaning the eventual developer doesn't need to necessarily build a tall tower.

"It is a low-rise project, so you don't have to build a 20-story tower," he said. "You are keeping your construction costs lower."

The asking price for the property is near the $450-per-square-foot price that the seller of the Junior's restaurant site just down the street had hoped to get before the property left the market.