Much of the housing stock in cities across the country is a result of efforts by developers. Without delving into the politics and/or urban appropriateness of one solution type over another, I’d like to take a look at some of the current socio-economic factors guiding today’s real estate market, after highlighting some of the new, under construction and planned high rises in Brooklyn:

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Atlantic Yards

J Condos
J Condominium see other 2 other DUMBO projects and a neighborhood blog Dumbo NYC, Brooklyn

Oro Condos Under Construction

Oro Condos (under construction) 306 Gold Street and the sister building at 313 Gold street

Williamsburg Savings Bank

One Hanson Place (former Williamsburgh Savings Bank)

The Edge rendering

The Edge

Schaefer Landing

Schaefer Landing

One Brooklyn Bridge Park

One Brooklyn Bridge Park

All of this new development is not without precedent. Brooklyn’s early 20th century high rises will be the subject of a walking tour in July.

The major players in residential development include potential buyers, current owners, developers, and governmental bodies. People want to live in desirable neighborhoods, available land (vacant or tear-down) now becomes presents itself as an opportunity to developers – build-able land + desirable neighborhood = potential profits (we must remember that we’re operating in a capitalist society – a developer’s number one job is to make money). As long as a developer can make the pro-forma work (add up cost of land, construction costs, how many units are allowed, divide cost by number of units and consider acceptable sales prices.) As a place becomes a really hot place to be (Brooklyn, for example), real estate and land costs skyrocket. A municipality wants to see continued growth because they benefit from the increased tax base. One way for a governing body to encourage growth is by changing land zoning to allow for more units on each piece of land.
In this day and age, all of this means cities (particularly those well established with enduring desirability) are building up. Economically, everyone benefits. There are more homes for people in desirable places, which makes more money for the developers and more taxes for the area. Many historically low rise neighborhoods (Brooklyn, for example) have become highly desirable due to their proximity to density. Which, in turn, makes these places more dense themselves.
Record high-rises set for Brooklyn

List of new residential developments in New York as of May 2006

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