Hudson Yards, High Line, 7 Line Extension: Chelsea Prepares for Change

Already one of the most dynamic and popular Manhattan neighborhoods, Chelsea and its surrounding area is in for some big changes. In the next three years, three major projects are planned: the third portion of the High Line, running up to 30th Street; the Hudson Yards Redevelopment Project; and the extension of the 7 Line to 34th and 11th. Chelsea’s rental market has adjusted to the boom and cultural shift from the High Line and the growing allure of the neighborhood. Rental prices are remaining relatively steady, but anticipation is building in the face of this huge influx of new development. Although the massive impact of the High Line on real estate, retail, and cultural institutions was relatively unexpected, developers will not be caught off guard this time.

The effects of the High Line on Chelsea as a neighborhood are well-documented. Hudson Yards will be the largest development project in Manhattan ever, so the effects of such an enormous undertaking are unpredictable, but the project is sure to bring even more attention to the area. Families, businesses, and tourists alike were drawn to Chelsea’s new look after the High Line opened. This trend of not only Chelsea’s rising status, but also its unique ability to appeal to almost anyone will surely increase further given the diversity of projects set to be completed in the coming years. The 7 Line extension will provide the first subway service west of 8th Avenue for the first time ever; this subway line will provide access to West Chelsea and the surrounding areas all the way from Queens. Despite some fears that the massive Hudson Yards project will turn the area over to corporate dominance, the combination of the three projects will dilute the effects of any one new development and allow the neighborhood’s reputation to grow even more.

Of course, the more attractive a neighborhood is, the more people want to live there. Fortunately for those interested in giving Chelsea a try, renting in Chelsea is still reasonably affordable. Since the opening of the High Line and the subsequent housing boom, rents have remained relatively stable. Chelsea one, two bedroom, and studio apartment rents have remained relatively constant, with studios and two-bedrooms slowly but steadily increasing over the past 13 months, and one bedroom rents declining very slightly but with greater price fluctuation over a year. The apartments available for rent in Chelsea, however, do not lack any of the luxury of some of the stunning new construction condos in the neighborhood. Chelsea Landmark and The Westminster are two examples of new construction rental apartment buildings that offer great Chelsea lifestyles for those interested in getting a taste of what is sure to be a new center of attention in Manhattan.

In the current rental market, there is no overall trend for increasing or decreasing prices in Chelsea, but the fact that different categories have different fluctuations demonstrates the popularity and diversity of Chelsea’s rental market. Although Chelsea is a coveted neighborhood, it is not as firmly as established as other popular neighborhoods since many of its attractions (namely the High Line) are relatively new. And now, even more dramatic changes are on the way. The only thing that we know is that these developments are unlike anything Manhattan, let alone Chelsea, has ever seen before. Chelsea is in for another renaissance.