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The Case for 70 Washington

After last Friday's legendary 70 Washington rant, combined with the news that some residents may be allowed to unpack next week, debate about the controversial Dumbo development has picked up. It's almost like the days when the building first appeared on our radar?oh, those glorious naive times.

All the attention cast on the old warehouse thrills us to no end, because it leads to awesome correspondence like the following. We simply have to give it up to the 70 Washer who composed this point-by-point rebuttal to the "playa hatas" out there who insist on dissing his investment. His email follows, but if you want a little taste that will make you click on those blue words down there, here it is: "First off: With regard to the noise. It's DUMBO for the holy love of Christ." Also after the jump: a bonus Walentas vs. Boymelgreen email. Life is good!

As one who has put money down in the building, I have followed your coverage of the building closely. It seems that the structure has taken on a life of its own, which is quite a bit for an old and inanimate structure to take. Mainly, i suppose, i would like to respond to some of the playa hatas out there....like they say, hate the game, brothers, not the landmark warehouse building on Washington Street.

First off: With regard to the noise. It's DUMBO for the holy love of Christ. Nobody moves to DUMBO for the silence. It's an urban locale, and that includes noise. But, if you actually spend any time there (both in DUMBO and, specifically, in one of the units at 70 Wash), you soon realize that the traffic, etc. create a consistent low level hum (often called "white noise"), such that it's not intrusive. Also, locals do speak of the the occassional myserious fire engine blaring or loud garbage truck (can it be true?? in rustic Brooklyn??) and, certainly, like any area in development, there will be construction sounds to contend with. If somebody wants quiet, they should try Northern Michigan.

Second: The Walentas are a real estate development company, not a charity organization. Are the units expensive? In relative terms--absolutely. In nearly any other place in America what you pay for a two bedroom (one BR with a second "home office") with a bridge view would buy an entire county. But again, i refer to the fact that this is NYC. And the prices at 70 Washington are a bargain if you actually begin shopping around and look at other new contstruction with similar "Fit and Finish". I supsect that some of those who are rantng the loudest feel priced out, and are using Curbed as a forum to vent this anger (just as, no doubt, those of us who bought feel some slight urge to defend our purchases). I can tell you that, in terms of the quaility of constrcution and the
Walentas' reputation for doing excellent build out work, you are getting what you pay for.

Third: The main ranter's contention that the building is "boring as shit" is so intelligent that I cannot refute it (since doing so requires me to understand what it means). It is a gorgeous old landmark warehouse that has been converted using very high quaity materials and a tasteful design, but such matters are subjective and what one man finds boring as shit another man may find exquisite and the makings of a lovely domicile.

Fourth: The building is nearly 50% sold (if not more). And, with regard to the coming price drop of which that ranter spoke--um, what?? The building just amended prices a second time and anybody who bought has now, in theory, made a profit (or at least grown the value of their asset). Prices may be impacted by the looming bubble burst that everybody seems to expect, but that remains to be seen. For now, demand is brisk, and prices are not heading South. If DUMBO is indeed "the next Tribeca" those of us "suckers" buying now will be laughing pretty loudly in 5 to 7 years. Of course, many of us, I suspect, are buying not for investment purposes but because we love the neighborhood and feel that this is the nicest place in the area to build our homes.

Like most things, it's just that simple.

Will that be the final word? Probably not. For the meantime, is the move-in date too good to be true? A reader wonders:i'm really curious if there will be people moving in next week into 70 Washington. cuz another sold out luxury condo called Riverfront on 57 Front(next to the Sweeney) still has no occupants mainly b/c of paperwork(COO...etc). i guess when developers say 'move in date approx... June' it really means 4 months later. if 70 Washington is able to have occupants by next week, i wonder what Two Trees is doing that Boymelgreen(developer of Riverfront) is not. what's taking so damn long???· 70 Washington: The Finest Building in All the Land [Curbed]