The Sit-Down

Gale Brewer and the Battle Against 7-Eleven

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer in her 1 Centre Street office.

Gale Brewer has lived on the Upper West Side since 1970. She served as the area’s City Council member for 12 years, concluding at the end of 2013, before starting as the 27th Manhattan borough president. Ms. Brewer, who plans to open a ground-floor district office on West 125th Street, joined with city preservationists earlier this month to call for reforms to the landmarking process following the Landmarks Preservation Commission’s refusal to consider landmark status for the Rizzoli Bookstore building at 31 West 57th Street. As Manhattan Beep, Ms. Brewer is tasked with advising the mayor and City Council on borough concerns, providing feedback on all land-use matters, advocating for New York County in the municipal budget process and appointing members of the 12 community boards. Ms. Brewer successfully advocated for the passage of legislation while in the City Council that would compel landlords to fix repeat violations as well as a law that requires all city data be published online. In February, Commercial Observer chatted with Ms. Brewer in her office at 1 Centre Street about adjusting to her new position, her beef with 7-Elevens and the easiest and most challenging developers to work with. Read More

On the Market

Former 7-Eleven Hits the Market on St. Mark’s Place

Photo: EV Grieve

“Retail for lease” signs went up yesterday at the just-closed 7-Eleven on St. Mark’s Place.

EV Grieve reported the branch closure on November 30, begetting a chorus of “good riddance” sentiments from the site’s largely anti-chain commenters. It was a rare setback for the quintessentially suburban convenient store behemoth as it continues to gobble up Manhattan real estate. Last year, the company opened 27 stores in the five boroughs, bringing it to 124 locations. Read More

Chain Chain Chain

Growth of National Chains Slows Significantly in NYC

Photo: Jeremiah's Vanishing New York

Fewer national chains opened New York City locations between 2012 and 2013 than in any year since at least 2008 according to a report by the nonprofit research group Center for an Urban Future.

The slight 0.5 percent increase in the number of chain retail locations paled in comparison to the 2.4 percent spike between 2011 and 2012. In fact, there are currently fewer chains in Queens and Manhattan than last year, perhaps giving hope to critics of the city’s supposed transformation into an outdoor mall. Read More

Lease Beat

7-Eleven Takes 2,500 Square Feet at 111 Fulton Street

7-11-logo

Convenience store chain 7-eleven has signed a long-term lease for roughly 2,500 square feet of retail space at 111 Fulton Street in the Financial District, The Commercial Observer has learned.

Ross Kaplan of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank represented the landlord, while Ariel Schuster and Greg Covey at RKF represented the tenant.

“There’s a flurry of activity going on Downtown,” Mr. Kaplan said, who has represented the landlord for the last year.  “Tourism and a dense commercial and residential population is a big draw for retailers in this part of town, especially quick-service shops.” Read More

Lease Beat

Au Bon Pain Takes 2,600 Square Feet at 111 Fulton Street

111 Fulton Street (Credit: Emporis)

Au Bon Pain has signed a long-term lease for roughly 2,600 square feet of retail space at 111 Fulton Street in the Financial District, The Commercial Observer has learned.

Ross Kaplan of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank represented the landlord, while Jacqueline Klinger of The Shopping Center Group represented the tenant.

“There’s a perfect storm going on Downtown,” said Mr. Kaplan, who has represented the landlord over the course of the last year.  “The dense commercial and residential population, as well as the tourism in the area, is a great draw for retailers.”

Read More