MANHATTAN — In a real estate smackdown between the Upper East Side's toniest streets — Fifth and Park avenues — it still pays to be closer to Central Park.
PropertyShark.com crunched the data for the avenues, between 59th and 96th streets, and found that the more expensive real estate was on Fifth Avenue, where the median sales price for 2011 reached $2.83 million.
But Park Avenue is catching up, PropertyShark found. The median sales price for 2011 was $2.55 million. That's 11 percent less than its Fifth Avenue neighbor, but that gap was narrowed from the headier days of 2008, when Park Avenue's median sales price of $3.1 million was 44 percent less than Fifth Avenue's $4.46 million.
Park Avenue, however, has more going for it in terms of the number of sales. The fancy stretch saw 230 sales this year compared to Fifth Avenue's 133.
These same areas of Park and Fifth avenues were visited by Occupy Wall Street activists in October during the "millionaires march," which rallied at the homes of the city's movers and shakers, including News Corp. honcho Rupert Murdoch, who lives at 834 Fifth Ave., and the city's wealthiest man, David Koch, who resides at 740 Park Ave.
Murdoch's building saw Fifth Avenue's most expensive sale of the year at $36 million, according to PropertyShark. Koch's building was the site of Park Avenue's priciest transaction at $27 million.
Park Avenue's fate was different in 2005, when its real estate prices — $2.375 million — were higher than Fifth's $1.8 million median price by 24 percent.