Soho-based real estate investment firm bought 94-unit property for $39M in 2012
By Rey Mashayekhi

Benchmark Real Estate Group continues to cash in on its portfolio of Manhattan rental properties. The real estate investment firm sold a 94-unit rental building near Gramercy Park to New York University for $87.5 million, or just over $1,300 per square foot.

The university closed on the eight-story property at 320 East 22nd Street, between First and Second avenues, last week. The building spans roughly 67,000 square feet and currently holds studios as well as one-bedroom and three-bedroom apartments.

Sources said NYU purchased the building to add more housing for its medical students. NYU Langone Medical Center’s Tisch Hospital is located a few blocks north of the property, with other NYU Langone facilities also located nearby on Manhattan’s East Side.

Benchmark, led by Jordan Vogel and Aaron Feldman, acquired the rental building from Maurice Mann’s Mann Realty for $39 million, or just over $580 per square foot, in November 2012. All but one of the 94 apartments at the property are currently market-rate rentals. All of the units have undergone interior renovations.

Benchmark declined to comment on the deal. The Soho-based firm, which launched in 2009, recently sold two Chelsea rental buildings for $26.5 million and offloaded a West Village rental building for $30 million. It also sold a 101-unit Kips Bay rental property for more than $68 million in February 2015.

Despite the selling spree, Benchmark has also been active on the acquisition side, having bought a 12-story Brooklyn Heights rental building for $50 million last summer.

A spokesperson for NYU did not immediately return a request for comment.

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