Scale Lending Provides $56M in Construction Financing for LIC Multifamily Property

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JMH Development and Mettle Property Group have scored $56 million in financing to develop a 143-unit multifamily building in Long Island City, Queens, Commercial Observer has learned.

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Scale Lending—the financing arm of Slate Property Group—provided the three-year debt in a deal arranged by Newmark Knight Frank’s Jordan Roeschlaub, Dustin Stolly, Daniel Fromm and Josh Egert

Jason Halpern’s JMH Development teamed up with Gerard Longo’s Mettle Property Group in 2016 to acquire the leasehold and develop the site at 36-20 Steinway Street, which previously housed five commercial buildings owned by supermarket chain Western Beef.

While the developers initially had plans to build a five-story luxury hotel, they changed direction due to the number of hotels being built in Manhattan and Long Island City at the time, Halpern told Real Estate Weekly in a November 2017 interview.

The six-story multifamily property will include 18,000 square feet of retail space—including 140 feet of frontage along Northern Boulevard—and 168 parking spaces.

“JMH and Mettle are a formidable partnership with a long track record of success together,” Stolly said. “The property will be one of Long Island City’s newest high-end developments within an area that is underserved by new product. Downtown LIC can be raucous and crowded but 36-20 Steinway will offer residents something unique and more neighborhood-like without sacrificing access to the subway or local amenities.”

JMH and Mettle also partnered on 70 Henry Street in Brooklyn— a boutique condo building with five luxury residences.

The deal marks Scale Lending’s second financing since the platform’s launch in October 2018. In March, it provided a $35 million construction loan for Happy Living Development’s 834 Pacific Street in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn.

“Our ability to work with the borrower on a complex deal structure and think outside the box is what set us apart and enabled us to finance the transaction,” Scale co-founder Martin Nussbaum said. “The sponsors’ experience gave us confidence that they would deliver a high-quality asset.  Additionally, we have deep and extensive experience in the Long Island City/Astoria submarket, so this enabled us to accurately underwrite the loan in a timely manner.” 

Officials at JMH and Mettle Property Group did not immediately return requests for comment.