Bob Murphy on MRP's New York Entry, Next Steps
MRP Realty made its first purchase in NYC this week, entering the world's premier real estate market with a 55k SF office condominium, five floors in a 47-story Midtown building.
MRP managing principal Bob Murphy (snapped in Georgetown earlier this summer) and his firm have been eyeing NYC for years, but only when they brought managing director Ryan Nelson into the fold did this deal, a $36M JV with Long Wharf Real Estate Partners, come together. The space has its own entrance at 135 West 52nd St and has access to all the amenities of the 109 residential condos in the 40 stories above.
That makes MRP's first New York buy something "you literally can’t find elsewhere in Manhattan," Bob says. It's the first buy for the city, but not the last. Just as MRP has found its way into major deals all over DC, they'll be growing soon. "It's a long-term commitment" to the biggest market in the country, he says. "We like the Manhattan office market currently, with positive economic indicators and a market that seems to be moving in our favor."
Also this week, MRP got the go-ahead from the DC City Council to develop 965 Florida Ave NW (rendered above), the Whole Foods-anchored project in Shaw that will have 393 apartments, 106 of which will be affordable, largely to those making less than 30% of AMI. The council accepted MRP and Ellis Development's payment of $1.4M for the site after previous concerns that the price tag was too low, despite the affordable housing requirements.
"This is the first project to comply with the new affordability law for DC parcel sales," Bob says, "and therefore the economics were very different from what the City Council has seen in the past."
That doesn't mean Shaw and U Street residents will be staying in the neighborhood to buy maca powder in bulk in the immediate future: 965 Florida is still two years from being shovel-ready, Bob says, with a year-long PUD process and a year of planning and permitting still ahead.