Lease Beat

The Pegasus Group to Move to 115 Broadway

115 Broadway.

The Pegasus Group, a company that owns and develops multi-tenant properties, primarily in neglected or underdeveloped urban areas, has finalized a 10-year lease for 2,767 square feet at 115 Broadway between Cedar and Thames Streets, according to The New York Times.

Pegasus will use the 17th floor space at 115 Broadway, previously occupied by W&W Steel Erectors, as executive offices. The firm plans to take occupancy in March. Read More

Lease Beat

AKOO Clothing Signs 12-Year Lease at 231 West 39th Street

231 West 39th Street.

AKOO Clothing signed a 12-year lease 231 West 39th Street for 9,355 square feet previously occupied by Genevieve Anderson, according to the New York Post which first reported the story.

AKOO (which stands for A King of Oneself) is a menswear brand founded by Grammy-winning artist T.I. The firm will be joined in by its owner RP55 Group, a manufacturing and distribution company, in the space. Read More

Market Report

Tech Sector Gains Ground on Financial Services in NYC Real Estate: Report

Google is one tech company that is eating up New York City real estate. Its Chelsea property at 111 Eighth Avenue is 2.9 million square feet.

In 2014, the tech sector and new media companies leased more than five million square feet of office space and was responsible for 16.2 percent of leasing activity in Manhattan, a 4.9 percent increase since 2013, according to a new report on the industry released by JLL. The report highlighted that the tech sector was second only to the financial services industry in terms of leasing activity; however, while the financial services industry was responsible for 24.7 percent of all activity in 2014, it represented a 3.2 percent decrease from the year before.

“Each year, the gap in activity between tech and financial services has steadily narrowed,” the report highlighted. Read More

Sales Beat

Savanna Sells 576 Fifth Avenue to Real Estate Equities

576 Fifth Avenue.

Real estate private equity and asset management firm Savanna has sold its leasehold on its 72,000-square-foot office building at 576 Fifth Avenue to Michael Miller, Brandon Miller and Mark Seigel of Real Estate Equities Corp, Commercial Observer has learned.

The property, which was sold for an undisclosed amount, sits on the corner of Fifth Avenue and East 47th Street in Midtown’s Diamond District. Today, there is a jewelry exchange on the ground floor and office space on the upper floors of the 11-story building, constructed in 1907. Read More

Architecture & Design

High Line Architect Designs Oasis on West 23rd Street

Rendering of rooftop at 50 West 23rd Street (credit: H5 Property).

Landscape architect James Corner of James Corner Field Operations, whose design turned an abandoned elevated train track on the Far West Side into a popular public park, is now hoping to provide a similar transformation—this time 11 stories above ground.

Two Trees Management Company hired the High Line‘s lead designer to create a new 10,600-square-foot rooftop garden and outdoor work space on the 11th floor of the 14-story building at 50 West 23rd Street between Fifth Avenue and Avenue of the Americas. It will be a place for meetings, parties, presentations and eating lunch, said Jed Walentas, a principal at Two Trees, when it opens in the third quarter of the year. Read More

Lease Beat

Charles Schwab Moving to 1133 Avenue of the Americas

1133 Avenue of the Americas

Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. will move to the 22,915 square foot 37th floor of 1133 Avenue of the Americas, following a build-out expected to be complete by the third quarter of 2015, as was first reported by

The financial services company, who has been subletting at another Durst Organization property—114 West 47th Street—signed an 11-year lease in January. The asking rent was in the mid-$80s per square foot. Read More

Buildings and Construction

DOB Overwhelmed by Construction Demand

Department of Buildings Commissioner Rick D. Chandler (Photo: Michael Nagle/for Commercial Observer).

The Department of Buildings‘ review of new building plans has slowed to a crawl because the city agency is getting buried under an avalanche of permit applications.

According to the most recent agency performance report from the Mayor’s Office of Operations, when it comes to new buildings it is taking the city’s DOB nearly twice as long to complete the first plan review, which is the period from the complete submission of the application to the date the plan examiner is able to issue a decision upon the submitted plans. That process has risen to an average of 15.7 days in the fiscal year to date compared with 8.5 in the previous FYTD, the data indicate. Read More

On the Market

City Seeks Developer for Seven-Acre Parcel Near JFK Airport

The seven-acre site referred to as JFK North (NYCEDC's RFEI).

The city is looking for a developer to purchase a fee interest or a long-term lease and then redevelop a seven-acre parcel along the south side of Rockaway Boulevard near John F. Kennedy International Airport.

“This is an ideal location for businesses that benefit from the proximity to JFK International Airport,” according to the New York City Economic Development Corp.‘s recent request for expressions of interest, or RFEI. Read More

The Lobby

Savills Studley Promotes Two to Executive Managing Director

Will Silverman (left) and Jeffrey Peck of Savills Studley.

Commercial real estate firm Savills Studley has promoted Jeffrey Peck and Will Silverman, previously senior managing directors, to executive managing directors, Commercial Observer has learned.

Mr. Peck joined Savills Studley in 2000 and has worked with tenants including National Public Radio, Burberry, the City University of New York, Valentino and Tourneau to assist them in securing office space. Throughout his career, he has overseen approximately 5 million square feet in transactions. He graduated from Boston University in 1985. Read More

Lease Beat

Bloomberg LP Inks Deal for 150K SF in Midtown

919 Third Avenue.

Bloomberg LP has signed a lease for 150,000 square feet at 919 Third Avenue between East 55th and East 56th Streets, close to its Lexington Avenue headquarters.

The company, founded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg in 1981, is paying rents in the mid-$50s per square foot, according to Crain’s New York Business, which reported the deal. Bloomberg LP declined to comment.  Read More

Tech and the City

NYC Will Continue to Lag in Broadband

It’s no secret that the buzziest sector of New York’s economy has been tech, which has made its way to the number two spot in the city’s portfolio of industries, according to a report by South Mountain Economics, prepared for the Bloomberg Technology Summit. However, as the city works to make itself globally competitive in innovation, it isn’t even close to competitive in terms of access to the Internet worldwide. Across the board, public dollars appear to be key in moving fast broadband. So, will New York City invest in the sort of municipal broadband network that the far faster U.S. cities, like Ephrata, Wash. and Chattanooga, Tenn., have built? Read More


Worker Injured During Demo for TF Cornerstone Luxe Building [Updated]

Scene of building collapse at  642 West 57th Street.

A construction worker suffered minor injuries in Midtown when part of a wall collapsed at a vacant building where TF Cornerstone will erect a luxury apartment building, according to officials.

FDNY Deputy Assistant Chief Dan Donoghue said at a press conference this afternoon that at 2:30 p.m., the New York City Fire Department received a call about a collapsed building on West 57th Street. When the fire fighters arrived at 642 West 57th Street between 11th and 12th Avenues, they saw the building had “collapsed inwards,” the chief said. Read More