18-Year Saga Ends in Ossining As Harbor Square Project Opens

John Jordan | June 28, 2016

OSSINING—A host of state, county and local dignitaries joined veteran residential real estate developer Martin Ginsburg on June 23rd in cutting the ribbon on Harbor Square, a $65-million luxury multifamily waterfront project here.

IMG_1257The Harbor Square development site has been the focal point of development for nearly 20 years. In 1998, Westchester developer Louis Cappelli’s firm Cappelli Enterprises won an RFP to develop the site. Later, GDC became a joint venture partner in the project and in February 2006, the two firms staged a groundbreaking for what was to be a community of 150 condominium units and 10,000 square feet of retail space.

Since then, Cappelli exited the project and GDC changed its plans to a 188-unit luxury rental apartment development that also features a 5,000-square-foot destination waterfront restaurant. GDC broke ground on the project adjacent to Sing-Sing prison in June 2014.

“Today represents a major milestone for GDC and the Village of Ossining. Working together we have been able to transform a former industrial property into a magnificent mixed-use residential community featuring luxury rental residences, a first-class riverfront restaurant and a new public park where residents and their families can enjoy the incomparable beauty of one of the world’s greatest rivers,” said Martin Ginsburg, principal of GDC. “As a transit-oriented development, Harbor Square appeals to both Millennials and empty-nesters who want the convenience of being just a short walk to the Metro-North train station.

IMG_1255Ginsburg said that 25% (approximately 42 units) of the rental apartment units have been pre-leased, noting that the development’s sales office was opening that weekend. He noted that a 5,000-square-foot restaurant would open this fall. While he did not identify the name of the restaurant, he did describe the new restaurant as being operated by a “prominent New York restaurateur” who has a restaurant in Tribeca and another in Edgewater, NJ.

The ribbon-cutting celebration also included the formal dedication of a new public park at Harbor Square in honor of Henry Gourdine, a well-known local fisherman who spent most of his 94 years harvesting the Hudson with fishing crews. The $1-million public park, which was built by GDC and funded 50% by a grant from New York State, features a children’s playground, waterfront promenade and dock that serves the NY Waterway Haverstraw-to-Ossining commuter ferry.

Ossining Village Mayor Victoria Gearity said the opening of Harbor Square signals a new day and an “exciting new chapter” for Ossining and its waterfront. “Is there any place more magnificent to watch a sunset than over the Hudson River? We are delighted to be welcoming this new opportunity for more people to enjoy the beauty our village,” she said.

IMG_1246Westchester County Executive Robert Astorino also praised GDC for its work on the Henry Gourdine park that also includes a distinctive archway sculpture. The park also provides public access to the Hudson River waterfront.

“I am truly impressed by the ambition of Harbor Square, and the scope of what will be offered to Ossining and the entire county as a result,” Astorino said.

One-bedroom apartments range from a 683-square-foot unit priced from $2,395 a month to a 1,114-square-foot one-bedroom that is designed like a home with a separate dining room, large den/guest room and two full baths priced at $3,295. Two bedroom units range from $3,195 for a 1,156-square-foot apartment to $6,000 for a 1,448 square-foot penthouse corner apartment that features walls of glass with river views.

A total of 19 rental units will be dedicated as affordable workforce housing and will be priced for those making up to 80% of the Westchester County median income. The project received approximately $2.3 million from the Westchester County Industrial Development Agency in sales and mortgage tax exemptions.

“This is built like a condominium,” Ginsburg told reporters after the ribbon-cutting event. “There is really nothing comparable in Westchester. We did this because we believe that the uniqueness of the location warrants (the investment).”

IMG_1248Harbor Square offers 24-hour front desk concierge services with package and dry cleaning acceptance and penthouse amenities including an expansive club lounge with Hudson River views; a fitness center with available personal trainers; a spa with available treatments from licensed massage therapists, a yoga/motion room with classes and a rooftop pool and sundeck with BBQ stations. Residents also have access to a business center and café serving Starbucks coffee, as well as a pet wash.

Harbor Square marks the Westchester debut of Ginsburg Development’s GDC Rentals brand of luxury resort-style properties, which launched last year with the opening of Riverside, a 108-unit luxury rental on the Hudson River at GDC’s Harbors-at-Haverstraw community in Rockland County. Other GDC Rentals communities in development include River Tides at Greystone, a 330-unit luxury rental complex overlooking the Hudson in Yonkers, and The Lofts on Saw Mill River, which feature 66 loft-style rental apartments in the Village of Hastings-on-Hudson.

Photo Caption:  From left, Ossining Town Supervisor Dana Levenberg; Ossining Village Mayor Victoria Gearity; Ossining Village Trustee Quantel Bazemore; Westchester County Executive Robert P. Astorino; Martin Ginsburg, Principal, Ginsburg Development Companies; County Legislator Catherine Borgia; State Assemblywoman Sandy Galef and Jamie Ethier of the Office of Planning and Development for the New York Department of State.


John Jordan
Editor, Real Estate In-Depth