BIT Announces New Investment in Riverside Place



New York, NY
(December 19, 2012) -- The AFL-CIO Building Investment Trust (BIT) and its partner The Dermot Company Inc. announce the acquisition and groundbreaking of Riverside Place, which is located at the southwest corner of West 61st Street and West End Avenue.  This 43-story building will be LEED certified and have 616 rental apartments, with over 30,000 square feet of extraordinary amenities for its residents, a four-story New York City public school for children pre-kindergarten through 8th grade, and 23,725 square feet of retail space. 

"We're very excited about bringing this special building to the Upper West Side," said Stephen N. Benjamin, COO of The Dermot Company.  "We believe that Riverside Place will generate strong interest for renters on the Upper West Side, and the new public school will be a great benefit for the building residents and others in the neighborhood."

The 112,440-square-foot public school, which will be turned over to the School Construction Authority ("SCA") to complete interior fit-out, is expected to be open for the 2016 school year.  The pre-kindergarten through grade eight school will offer general education classrooms, a gym and auditorium, a science laboratory, a library and more.  There will be two open play areas on separate roof terraces.  The school will be built to comply with the SCA Green Schools requirements.  "I look forward to working in this public-private partnership, which will provide a brand new school for our students," said Lorraine Grillo, President and Chief Executive Officer of the SCA.  "It will include state-of-the-art school construction with sustainability in mind."

This is the fourth project in which the BIT has invested with Dermot and is the BIT's twelfth investment in New York City.  "The BIT is excited to be making this investment in New York and to participate in the creation of additional jobs," remarked Kevin McCarthy, President of PNC Realty Investors, Inc., the investment advisor for the BIT.  "In addition to being a prudent investment for the BIT, Riverside Place will create over 2,000 jobs for the skilled men and women of the New York Building Trades."

The BIT and the Dermot Company envision Riverside Place as the most visually attractive and elegant new rental building on the Upper West Side.  "We expect that the tenants at Riverside Place will really enjoy the superior interior finishes and amenities in the building," added Benjamin.  

Utilizing the most advanced lighting technology, the lobby's digital waterfall will light-up with designs displayed on the surface of falling water.  Residents will also enjoy an extensive amenity package, including a 60-foot, custom shaped swimming pool and separate hot tub, a 21,000-square-foot fitness center, a yoga and dance room, a private wine bar and lounge, a children's play area, a hobby room, a dog grooming area and other inviting features that will be available exclusively to the tenants in the building. 

Apartment homes will include floor-to-ceiling windows, washers and dryers, walk-in closets, hardwood flooring, stainless-steel appliances and high-end kitchen and bathroom finishes and fixtures.  Views from the apartment homes will showcase the Hudson River and vast cityscapes. 

Riverside Place will be built under the New York State Housing Finance Agency's 80/20 Program.  The completed property will have 616 units of which 489 units (80%) will be market-rate and 127 units (20%) will be low-income units with a mixture of studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom apartments.  The 80/20 Program uses long-term 34-year, tax-exempt bonds to create affordable housing for low-income tenants in residential locations throughout New York City.

Completion is anticipated by June 2015.  Riverside Place is the first building of the five-building Riverside Center Master Development plan approved in December 2010.

About the AFL-CIO Building Investment Trust

The AFL-CIO Building Investment Trust is a group trust of pension plans with union beneficiaries managed by PNC Realty Investors, Inc.  The primary objective of the trust is to provide competitive risk-adjusted returns for its participants throught its investment in institutional quality, commercial real estate with ancillary objectives of promoting economic development and creating union jobs.  Since its inception in 1988, the trust has invested $4.3 billion to finance over 25 million square feet of commercial real estate and more than 12,000 apartment units.

About the Dermot Company, Inc.

The Dermot Company is led by principals, William P. Dickey and Stephen N. Benjamin.  Formed in 1991 as a real estate management company focused on multi-family sector opportunities, Dermot today is a fully-integrated real estate enterprise with nearly $2.0 billion in assets under management and development.  Historically, Dermot has partnered with institutional equity investors to implement its New York City multi-family development strategy.  To date, Dermot has developed over $1.6 billion of apartment projects in New York City.