Lease Beat

Metro-North Expands Presence in Grand Central Area

The Graybar Building.

Metro-North Commuter Railroad Company has expanded its presence at the Graybar Building at 420 Lexington Avenue to house the railroad’s police department.

According to a press release issued by SL Green, the Graybar Building’s owner, Metro-North inked a 20-year lease for 30,254 square feet. This increases its total occupancy at the site to 296,257 square feet. The expansion will occur on portions of the building’s fourth and sixth floors. Read More

Lease Beat

Monster Worldwide Renews Lease in Midtown East

622 Third Avenue.

Monster Worldwide, the parent company of job search engine Monster.com, has renewed its lease at 622 Third Avenue, Commercial Observer has learned.

The company recently signed a 10-year lease renewal for 30,000 square feet that it occupies on the entire 39th floor and a portion of the 37th floor at the building located between East 40th and East 41st Streets. Read More

On the Market

NYC REIT Closes on 570 Seventh Avenue, Renames Building

A rendering of the lobby at the renamed 200 West 41st Street. (Neoscape)

American Realty Capital New York City REIT, a public non-traded real estate investment trust, recently closed on the $170.3 million purchase of 570 Seventh Avenue from Carlyle Investment Management and Capstone Equities. Now the office building is eschewing its Garment Center history with a new address: 200 West 41st Street.

Along with a new address comes a new identity including an entrance on West 41st Street and a multimillion-dollar repositioning including prebuilts to attract TAMI, or technology, advertising, media and information technology, companies, Commercial Observer has learned. Read More

Sales Beat

Savanna and Feil Sell 21 Penn to TIAA-CREF

21 Penn Plaza

Financial services company TIAA-CREF has purchased the 16-story, 378,547-square-foot 21 Penn Plaza building from Savanna and the Feil OrganizationCommercial Observer has learned.

While representatives for both sides of the deal declined to state the purchase price of the renovated Class B building that sits one block west of Penn Station, the owners placed the property on the market this summer with an asking price of about $250 million, Crain’s New York Business reported. Savanna and Feil inked 225,000 square feet of leases and implemented $5 million in building upgrades to deliver the property to TIAA-CREF with 98 percent occupancy, said Robert Knakal of Massey Knakal Realty Services. Read More

Sales Beat

W’burg Eatery Sells Parking Lot for $9.6M

526 Union Avenue

The 114-year-old North Williamsburg Italian eatery Bamonte’s has sold its 10,000-square-foot parking lot to Alliance Private Capital Group for $9.6 million, Commercial Observer has learned.

The development site at 526 Union Avenue allows CEO Michael Kohn’s company to build up to 36,000 square feet on the site, which is zoned residential, brokers from MNS Investment Sales & Advisory told CO. The sale, which hasn’t hit property records, closed Nov. 5 and calculates out to just over $266 per square foot. Alliance officials intend to build a residential property on the site, MNS broker David Behin said. Read More

Lease Beat

Fashion Designer Cuts a Deal to Relocate in Garment District

132 West 36th Street.

Women’s fashion designer Donna Morgan will move three blocks south in the Garment District through a seven-year, 8,272-square-foot lease at the Kaufman Organization‘s 132 West 36th Street, Commercial Observer has learned.

The company, which designs outfits ranging from wedding dresses to casual wear, will occupy a showroom and office on the north side of the eighth floor of the structure between Broadway and Seventh Avenue. Kaufman officials expect them to relocate from 530 Seventh Avenue in February 2015 at the building where asking rents run in the high $40s per square foot, they said. Read More

Air rights

City Pitches LIC Development Deal Swap

The Queensboro Bridge.

The city is, for the first time, offering a new deal to developers of affordable housing: free air rights. The Economic Development Corporation has issued request for proposals that makes developers a novel pitch: development rights, at no cost, in exchange for a “permanently affordable housing program that maximizes both the number of housing units and the level of affordability,” according to the EDC.

The air rights on the table are for three city-owned parcels beneath the Queensboro Bridge in Long Island City. Because of bridge ramps, the sites themselves are not available for development. Read More

Lease Beat

Major League Baseball Expands at Chelsea Market

Chelsea Market. (Jamestown)

Professional baseball organization Major League Baseball has hit a winner with an expanded lease for its multimedia branch, Major League Baseball Advanced Media, inside Jamestown‘s Chelsea Market, Commercial Observer has learned.

MLB Advanced Media, which oversees MLB.com and is based on the fifth floor at 75 Ninth Avenue, has added 35,000 square feet on the second floor, bringing its total square footage in Chelsea Market to 150,000, a source with intimate knowledge of the deal said. Read More

Mortgage Observer

DTZ Capital Markets Team Retained for Caribbean Resort Deal

Six Senses Residences Freedom Bay.

DTZ’s Capital Markets Group has been hired by the London-based developer Affinity Resorts to secure $30 million to complete a 5-star resort under construction on the island of St. Lucia in the Caribbean, Mortgage Observer can first report.

The first-lien financing will provide the required capital to supplement pre-sales proceeds to finish the property, Six Senses Residences Freedom Bay, which will contain 109 timeshare villas and 48 residences when completed. Read More

The Lobby

TerraCRG Expands Commercial Leasing Division with New Hire

Peter Schubert

TerraCRG has tapped former Transwestern and Moinian Group broker Peter Schubert to expand its leasing presence throughout Brooklyn, Commercial Observer has learned.

The commercial brokerage and advisory firm that focuses solely on Brooklyn brought Mr. Schubert on as a partner and managing director of the company’s commercial leasing division, company officials said. Though TerraCRG has made a name for itself as an investment sales brokerage, Mr. Schubert will beef up the retail leasing staff at the six-year-old firm. Read More

Lease Beat

Two Finance Firms Nab Space in West Midtown [Updated]

810 Seventh Avenue.

Brightwood Capital Advisors and DH Capital LLC and DH Capital Securities together have taken 26,080 square feet at 810 Seventh Avenue between West 52nd and West 53rd Streets.

As first reported by The New York Post, Brightwood Capital Advisors took 17,320 square feet and DH Capital LLC and DH Capital Securities took 8,760 square feet. Brightwood’s lease is for 10-plus years and spans the entire 26th floor, according to a release from SL Green Realty Corp., the building’s owner. DH Capital’s lease is for seven-plus years and occupies a portion of the 20th floor.  Read More

Lease Beat

CVS Takes 12K SF at RFR Building on East 47th Street

757 Third Avenue.

Pharmacy chain CVS Health has signed a lease for more than 12,000 square feet at RFR Realty‘s 757 Third Avenue between East 47th and East 48th Streets, Commercial Observer has learned.

The retailer took 12,204 square feet on the ground-floor corner and basement of the building. The space was previously occupied by Wells Fargo Bank and RCN, RFR said. The new CVS lease required both a temporary and permanent relocation of RCN, which will temporarily move to RFR’s 275 Madison Avenue until its permanent location is ready for occupancy. Read More

Impending sale

Extell Nears $80M Sale of East 47th Street Site [Updated]

131-141 East 47th Street. (Masskey Knakal Realty Services marketing materials)

Gary Barnett‘s Extell Development is close to selling off a four-building site with 128,034 buildable square feet for around $80 million, Commercial Observer has learned.

The four contiguous buildings at 131-141 East 47th Street between Third and Lexington Avenues have a combined $80 million asking price, according to the Massey Knakal Realty Services marketing materials. The site includes an 11-story parking garage and three, four-story mixed-use walkup buildings. It is a ground-up mixed-use development site, which has garnered interest from hotel as well as residential developers, according to Massey Knakal’s Robert Knakal, who is marketing the property with colleagues Clint Olsen, Jonathan Hageman, Ax Hayssen and Patrick Yannotta. Mr. Knakal expects to have a contract signed soon. Read More

Midtown East Rezoning

SL Green Scores a TD at 1 Vanderbilt

1 Vanderbilt

TD Bank inked a lease to anchor SL Green Realty Corp.’s proposed 1 Vanderbilt skyscraper in an approximately 200,000-square-foot deal for both a flagship retail space and a sizable office footprint in 2020, SL Green announced today.

The 67-story, 1.6-million-square-foot tower slated for 317 Madison Avenue still needs to gain approval through the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure, and representatives for SL Green will be presenting the project to Manhattan Community Boards 5 and 6 at a public hearing tonight at the 42nd Street Library. Read More