Apartments to Replace Pawn Shop at 139 East 23rd Street in Kips Bay

139 East 23rd Street, image via Google Maps139 East 23rd Street, image via Google Maps

After 123 years in business, the Modell pawn shop chain is moving to redevelop its stores. The company has filed plans to build a 15-story building at 139 East 23rd Street, where its Kips Bay shop currently stands.

The project would reach 155 feet into the air between Lexington and Third avenues, on the north side of 23rd Street. The building would include 1,640 square feet of ground floor retail, which means that the pawn broking business may return. Thirteen apartments would follow, and each floor would have just one unit. Those 13 apartments would be divided across 23,211 square feet of residential space, for a spacious average apartment of 1,785 square feet. A duplex would fill the final two floors, topped by a roof deck.

Eric Modell of Modell Financial is listed as the developer, and the Modell family appears to be developing the property itself. Chelsea-based H.T.O. Architect applied for the permits.

The property is only 26-feet-wide and 100-feet-deep, and it’s currently home to a three-story commercial building. The Modells bought the building back in 1993, according to public records.

Another former Modell’s location in Midtown—which was later sold to a rival pawnbroker—is about to be redeveloped into a 17-story office building.

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5 Comments on "Apartments to Replace Pawn Shop at 139 East 23rd Street in Kips Bay"

  1. See workers see an under construction, take a years for building but that’s a progress.

  2. The Modell pawnshop neighborhood would be more accurately be described as being in the Gramercy Park or NoMad neighborhood or to use a somewhat archaic term for the neighborhood,”Rose Hill”. I lived and worked in that neighborhood before most Google employees reached puberty.

    • Richard Sawicki | August 10, 2016 at 5:55 pm |

      Yes! As someone who has lived in the neighborhood since 1968 I agree with pointing out the inaccurate area name.

      Either Gramercy Park, which is one and a half blocks away, or Rose Hill, the eponymous estate the very land of which the Modell’s store is standing on, but not Kips Bay. Not by a long shot.

      But I shudder at “NoMad”. It’s nothing but another of those fake neighborhood names created by real estate marketers (which technically wouldn’t be accurate anyway since, I believe, it is meant as a contraction of “NOrth of MADison Square”, and the property is situated southeast of that locale – but I digress).

  3. East 20’S is “Madison Square” area not “Kips Bay.” Kips Bay is the low 30’s.

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