The controversial Key Food residential project in Park Slope is going to developer Billy Macklowe and investor David Welsh as his partner.
Sources said the site is now in contract for less than $65 million, but buyers Macklowe and Welsh will spend around another $140 million on demolition and construction. No timing was available but the deal is expected to close later this year.
It’s Macklowe’s first Brooklyn residential development.
Originally proposed in 2016 by now-seller Brian Ezra of Avery Hall, the mixed-use plan for 120 Fifth Ave. had been hotly contested by the community as it will replace the local grocer with a smaller food store.
Ezra bought the site in March 2017 for $45.68 million from Pick Quick Foods, which operates the Key Food, and adjusted plans after community discussions.
With spot zoning and plans by SLCE Architects in place, last fall, Ezra hired the Cushman & Wakefield investment sales team of Adam Spies, Douglas Harmon, Adam Doneger and Dan O’Brien to market the site.
The two proposed low-rise buildings with 165 units will include a smaller grocery store within its 90,000 square feet of retail, as well as 220 parking spaces and room for 107 bikes. Resident-only terraces, a fitness facility and dog-washing station are in the current plans as is some affordable housing.
A public pedestrian oasis with tables and chairs is also to be created between the buildings along the tract of the previously de-mapped Butler Street.
The buyers may also tweak some components and finishes for today’s renters, sources said.
Welsh, whose $100 million pact to sell Normandy’s operating and development businesses to Columbia Property Trust closed earlier this week, also announced that he launched a new company, Senlac Ridge Partners, with Finn Wentworth and Giorgios Vlamis, who also left Normandy.
While Welsh will remain as chairman of the investment committees for two Normandy funds, in an e-mail sent to his contacts, he described Senlac as an “entrepreneurial PE firm targeting a broad range of investment opportunities spanning real estate and non-real estate assets and businesses.”
It is unclear whether Welsh is partnering with Macklowe through Senlac or another entity.
None of the parties could be reached for comment by press time.