After the housing bubble burst in 2008, foreclosed homes, shuttered windows and overleveraged for-sale properties became familiar scenery across the country. Despite its generally robust constitution, even New York City’s multifamily market—one of the city’s biggest sectors—suffered a blow just like suburbia.

Before the crash, hungry developers ravenously bought up land in areas like Williamsburg, Brooklyn and Long Island City, Queens to build shiny new condominiums, expecting to pre-sell enough units to obtain construction financing. But as credit tightened, many of these ambitious projects never filled up—and stopped altogether, leaving behind concrete and metal shells.

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