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Barone crowd funds equity for new Queens school

New York based development firm Barone Management has crowd funded $6.5 million to build a new Queens school.

The company announced it worked with online investment marketplace CrowdStreet to raised the equity which tops up a $22.5 million construction loan from Metropolitan Commercial Bank and $6.8 million in sponsor equity for the project.

“This is a special project with a social impact investing component, which we thought would be appealing to individual investors on the CrowdStreet platform,” said Scott Barone, founder and principal of Barone Management.

SCOTT BARONE

“Raising equity on CrowdStreet was an incredibly streamlined, efficient process. This is hopefully the first of many deals we bring to investors on the platform.”

Barone is building a four-story, 67,286 s/f charter school at 45-20 83rd Street in the Elmhurst section of Queens.

Friends of the Renaissance Charter Schools, has signed a 31-year lease to occupy the property, which will be operated by Renaissance Charter School, one of the oldest and highest-ranked charter schools in New York City.

The school will serve a majority population of minority students, multi-language learners and economically disadvantaged kids. It is currently approved to be K-6, but may ultimately serve K-8 or K-12.

It will have 39 typical classrooms, plus additional spaces to accommodate music, art and science programming, a 6,000 s/f high school sport regulation gym, and a nearly 3,000 s/f cafeteria. ·       

Occupancy will be in September 2022.  In the meantime, the developer has secured temporary incubation space for the operator at another location.

Rendering of the new charter school

153 individual investors on CrowdStreet provided equity for the project.

Ilya Gamer, managing director of CrowdStreet, commented, “Barone Management is an established operator with knowledge and expertise in the local market and the charter school sector.

“This deal is remarkable for the quality and character of the building to be developed, its long-term occupancy by a highly regarded charter school operator, and its service to a special set of stakeholders. CrowdStreet is pleased to be able to facilitate the equity investment of the first charter school project to be on our marketplace.”

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