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Curbed Cup 1st round: (4) Yorkville vs. (13) Mott Haven

Which neighborhood should advance? Cast your vote now!

Max Touhey

The Curbed Cup, our annual award for the neighborhood of the year, is kicking off with 16 neighborhoods vying for the prestigious (fake) trophy. We’ll reveal each of the neighborhoods this week, and polls will be open for 24 hours so you can cast your vote as to which ones should advance. Let the eliminations commence!

Yorkville (4)

It’s been a big year for the Upper East Side enclave of Yorkville, and that’s due in no small part to the much-anticipated opening of the Second Avenue subway.

The new subway line is major for neighborhood residents and real estate interests alike: a month after the first phase’s opening, the line was netting an increase of 8,000 riders per week, with the numbers only anticipated to go up. And just as ridership rises, so too have real estate prices in the area—though it’s too soon to tell whether it’s the Second Avenue subway or the forward march of New York real estate that’s at its root.

The neighborhood’s newfound connection to the subway seems to have inspired a residential building boom in the area. Hundreds of new apartments are now rising on the Upper East Side, with a major concentration of those buildings in Yorkville.

There’s Robert A.M. Stern Architects’ 20 East End Avenue, the SHoP-designed Citizen360, Related’s The Easton, and Extell’s The Kent, and not to mention Icon Realty’s plans for a 30-story tower on the corner of East 80th Street and Second Avenue, and the massive new mixed-use, mixed-income project coming to the site of NYCHA’s Holmes Playground near East 92nd Street and First Avenue.

Mott Haven (13)

With a handful of noteworthy projects in its confines, the South Bronx has started to draw some attention from New York’s real estate set. Somerset Partners and Chetrit Group’s seven-building development broke ground in 2017 marking the start in construction of the borough’s largest private development ever. When it’s complete, the project will bring 1,300 apartments, community space, a 25,500-square-foot public waterfront esplanade, and a food hall to the area.

It isn’t only Mott Haven that’s attracted major real estate investment: nearby in Lower Concourse, a massive affordable housing complex called Bronx Point was just greenlit by the City Council. The project will bring 1,000 units of permanently affordable housing to the neighborhood, as well as a home for the Universal Hip Hop Museum, another food hall, a movie theater, an outdoor performance space, and a new waterfront esplanade along the Harlem River.

In late 2016, Empire State Development also issued a Request For Proposals for a 13-acre rail yard area north of Willis Avenue Bridge that could see a Hudson Yards-style development in the coming years, if local officials have their way.