A nearly abandoned lot in University Heights could soon become the Bronx’s next residential haven.
Realtors are wooing bidders for a prime tract of north Bronx waterfront they say would be perfect for hulking towers. Asking price: a cool $30 million.
A developer could build nearly 1 million square feet of residential space on 320 W. Fordham Road in University Heights — known to some as “Fordham Landing” — just off the Major Deegan Expressway and steps from the Harlem River, according to the listing by Massey Knakal, which took over the site earlier this year.
Karl Brumback, the firm’s vice president, envisions four or five towers with a mix of market-rate and affordable housing and parking for the waterside unit.
“This is a game-changer for the north Bronx,” said Brumback.
There’s one potential pitfall: The privately owned parcel is located directly across the street from a planned residence that includes a homeless shelter.
Manhattan-based nonprofit Bowery Residence Committee wants to build a shelter, with 200 single rooms for homeless residents alongside 132 affordable units, in space on Landing Road space currently used by Dallas BBQ as a parking lot, the News reported in July.
The agent marketing the site shrugged off any dip in the value due to its proximity to a homeless shelter.
“Stand on any corner on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, and you’ll be within a mile of half a dozen NYCHA developments,” Brumback said.
The parcel’s owner got city approval to have it rezoned for residential development during the Ed Koch era, in the 1980s, but it has been sitting nearly vacant since then, except for a dairy business that uses it as a depot for delivery trucks.
A developer would be required to include some community-accessible feature in order to maximize the site’s buildable space, said Steve Lorenzo, an analyst at Friedland Realty Advisors, noting that any approvals would be certain to hinge on the inclusion of some affordable housing.
One person who wouldn’t want to live there is Karen Argenti, who was chairwoman of the local Community Board when the parcel was rezoned.
“It’s an ugly, empty, disgusting vacant lot,” said Argenti, who left the board in 1992 and is now part of the Harlem River Working Group, a volunteer organization hoping to build a waterfront river path.