Construction Begins on TWO 25 Story Luxury Buildings on South Bronx Waterfront

Welcome to the end of the South Bronx as we know it.

The first market-rate luxury high rises have begun construction along the South Bronx waterfront in Port Morris.

Renderings for 198 and 200 E 135th which are already rising in Port Morris.

But in a surprise twist to many, they’re not the ones originally proposed by Somerset Partners and the Chetrit Group who planned a 1,300 unit development across 7 high rising towers along the waterfront and attempted to rebrand the area as the Piano District.

This is a completely different developer.

It’s located at 198 and 200 East 135th Street directly in front of the Major Deegan Expressway (like practically on top) and the site is on the same mega block where Brookfield acquired the old Somerset and Chetrit’s development site earlier this year.

The excavated development site.
Rendering of the former Somerset and Chetrit development site with 7 towers and 1,300 apartments (without the rendering of the two separate towers currently under construction by a different developer, CGS Builders.

Once complete, the two 25 story buildings will have 465 apartments spread across both buildings with a total of 346,632 square feet.

According to a department of building sign at the construction site, scheduled completion date for these monstrosities is in 2021.

They will join the Joinery Condominiums on the other side of the highway on 138th Street where apartments are going for as high as in $890,000+ range as more and more market rate continues to rise in the Lower Concourse Rezoning area of Mott Haven and Port Morris which was rezoned under the Bloomberg administration in 2009.

The foundation for one building is already under construction and the second building’s foundation is being excavated when we stopped by to check in on the progress.

Excavation has begun for the second tower/©Welcome2TheBronx
Foundation is almost complete for one of the towers/Image ©Welcome2TheBronx

Although these market-rate luxury buildings are coming, we keep asking ourselves, who is going to want to live on top of a highway let alone having to go across dangerous intersections just to get to the nearest subway?

Cars and trucks are speeding by the construction site as there are no traffic lights for several blocks on which leads to vehicles racing by just to make it to Third Avenue before the light changes.

If the nearby Crescendo, the luxury addition to the Clocktower is any indication, it will take a long time to fill these units up. That building has taken over 18 months to fill and it’s still not fully occupied.

At any rate, we are witnessing the end of the South Bronx as we know it. Luxury market-rate housing is being built in the country’s poorest congressional district creating a tale of two cities right within our own borough.



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Ed García Conde

Ed García Conde is a life-long Bronxite who spends his time documenting the people, places, and things that make the borough a special place in the hopes of dispelling the negative stereotypes associated with The Bronx. His writings are often cited by mainstream media and is often consulted for his expertise on the borough's rich history.