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NEW YORK CITY-Another Liberty Bond project in Lower Manhattan is under way. Fleet Real Estate Finance Group, a unit of Fleet National Bank, arranged $180 million in financing to support the construction of 2 Gold St., a 51-story residential apartment building. The project, which is being developed by Rockrose Development Corp., carries a total development cost of approximately $225 million.

The apartment building will feature 650, studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom units, 21,397 sf of retail space and a 100-car parking garage. Designed by Avinash K. Malhotra Architects, construction for the project is currently under way with the first units expected to be ready for occupancy by spring 2005. There is no affordable-housing component to this deal. According to Fleet, the developer tore down the original structure(s) at the site which included a mix of office and commercial space.

Fleet is the lead source of financing for the development and co-lenders include Wells Fargo, Helaba Bank, HSBC, Bayerische Landesbank, Euro-Hypo, HSH Nordbank and Bank Leumi.

The financing will enhance the Liberty Bonds issued by the New York City Housing Development Corp. The Liberty Bonds program is an $8 billion tax-exempt private activity bond program created for rebuilding portions of New York City affected by the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. This is the third Liberty Bonds development financed by Fleet, which says that the financing process was extremely intricate. A Fleet spokesperson added that because the loan is so large, Fleet syndicated it out to the seven participating banks.

“2 Gold St. represents our third Liberty Bond project and we hope to continue to play a pivotal role in the future redevelopment of lower Manhattan,” says Jim Hedden, executive vice president, Real Estate Finance Group at Fleet.

Richard A. Brancato, senior vice president of Rockrose Development Corp., adds, “Given the size and complexity of the deal, the experience and knowledge of the players involved proved to be invaluable.”

“Rebuilding Lower Manhattan is essential to the city’s future, and Liberty Bonds are helping us transform it into a 24/7 community,” says Bill Traylor, HDC’s acting president. “2 Gold St. is key to our overall vision for Lower Manhattan.”

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