Carlyle Group Buys Queens Rentals from Gershon for $85M

Carlyle’s Kewsong Lee and Jason Hart with 22-22 Jackson Avenue (Carlyle Group, ODA Architecture)

The Carlyle Group is wading further into the Queens multifamily market.

The asset manager picked up the Jenga tower that is 22-22 Jackson Avenue, a 175-unit rental building, for $85 million this month from Gershon Company, public records show.

Jason Hart, Carlyle’s managing director, signed for the buyer.

Gershon, the building’s developer, acquired the lot in 2013 for $16.5 million and later secured around $66 million in financing, consolidating two previous loans.

For Carlyle, the purchase signifies continued interest in a neighborhood with direct access to Midtown Manhattan, relatively cheap land and robust demand from millennials.

A trade school building that Carlyle picked up at 24-02 Queens Plaza South last year at a discount is about a half-mile south of 22-22 Jackson Avenue. In March 2020, Newmark Knight Frank had marketed the trade school property in the $50 million to $55 million range, GlobeSt reported. Carlyle acquired it for $40 million.

The firm expects to create a commercial facility when the current tenant’s lease expires, New York Business Journal reported. It has yet to file any plans with the city, though.

The firm made a splash in 2018 when one of its funds spent $284 million — a record-price for Queens — on 1 QPS Tower, a luxury rental building around the block from 24-02 Queens Plaza South. The purchase came when Long Island City was still in the running for Amazon’s HQ2 site.

Even after Jeff Bezos spurned the neighborhood on Valentine’s Day of 2019, Long Island City has remained appealing to investors and developers alike. Plans have been filed for a flurry of residential and mixed-use buildings, promising more apartments and places to shop for the influx of renters returning to the city.

There’s even a Target in the works.

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