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Brooklyn condo moves for $3.4 million, a downtown record: Douglas Elliman

Interior view of 101 Willoughby Street #27B
Source: Douglas Elliman Real Estate
Interior view of 101 Willoughby Street #27B

New York City's white-hot residential prices have found a new target: Downtown Brooklyn.

If there was ever any doubt about the frothy prices of the borough's real estate, a recent condominium sale at 101 Willoughby Street confirmed it. A penthouse unit there recently sold for $3.4 million, which appears to be a record for the immediate vicinity.

The 3 bedroom, 3 full bath duplex boasts 15 foot ceilings and a private elevator, is part of a residence building in a 1929 art deco office building that used to belong to NY Telephone Company before it was converted into luxury condos back in 2008, according to real estate directory Streeteasy.

The Willoughby St. unit had been on the market since the building was converted, according to Douglas Elliman, the real estate firm that brokered the sale.

The sale price of the unit, located in a Belltel Lofts luxury development, is notable for its location. Although Brooklyn's residential market is one of the city's most torrid, the downtown area was mainly defined by commercial and retail properties.

Interior view of 101 Willoughby Street #27B
Source: Douglas Elliman Real Estate
Interior view of 101 Willoughby Street #27B

Brooklyn has never been associated with luxury condominiums. But over the last several years, the neighborhood has undergone a rapid transformation that went into hyper-drive once the Barclays Center became a fixture in the neighborhood.

Much like nearby Wall Street, Downtown Brooklyn's formerly business oriented landscape is being reshaped by a residential boom.

Alex Maroni, the Douglas Elliman agent who brokered the sale, explained to CNBC that the area was a "really hot market" that was a legacy of former NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg's tenure. Brooklyn's commercial district was rezoned under his administration—and residential prices have been on a tear ever since.

Nearby 388 Bridge Street has been a beneficiary of Downtown Brooklyn's booming market. The building's owner likened demand in the area to a "gold rush" in a 2014 interview with the New York Post.