Development

New Jersey ‘Life Village’ to Assist Kids with Special Needs

A rendering of the "Life Village."

Avison Young is teaming with non-profit group the Friendship Circle to oversee the conversion and buildout of a new 45,000-square-foot state-of-the-art educational and therapeutic facility designed for youths with special needs.  

The “Life Village” facility, which will become the third “Life Town” facility of its kind in the country, will include a 12,000-square-foot town center, complete with a bank, grocery store, restaurants and much more.  Read More

Go West, Young Man

The Moinian Group Reveals Plans for 1.8-Million-Square-Foot 3 Hudson Boulvard

3 Hudson Boulevard

The Moinian Group this afternoon offered details about the upcoming 3 Hudson Boulevard, a 1,000-foot tall, 1.8-million-square-foot tower on 11th Avenue between West 34th and West 35th Streets in the thick of the Hudson Yards development.

“For more than two decades The Moinian Group has believed that the new West Side would emerge as Manhattan’s most sought-after neighborhood,” Joseph Moinian, founder of The Moinian Group, said in a prepared statement. “Our new mixed-use building at 3 Hudson Boulevard will stand as the pinnacle of elegance along the new Hudson Boulevard & Park. With 3 Hudson Boulevard, you are going to see something truly spectacular.” Read More

Lease Beat

Avison Young Leases Its First Manhattan Headquarters

623 Fifth Avenue

Avison Young is taking 15,000 square feet at 623 Fifth Avenue as space for its new Manhattan headquarters, The Commercial Observer has learned.

The Canada-based real estate services company opened in the city last year and has been operating out of temporary space offered by the office suite company Regus at 245 Park Avenue. Read More

Power 100

The Commercial Observer’s Power 100 Gala, Minute by Minute, Drink for Drink

Gary Barnett, Among the Most Powerful Men in Real Estate.

Can The Commercial Observer party at its own party? You bet! The CO got down at its annual Power 100 celebration, which honors its picks for the top 100 most powerful, influential and successful real estate figures in the city. Held at the Core Club in Midtown on Monday night, the gathering featured a collection of the most distinguished owners, brokers, executives and politicians. After the jump, a minute-by-minute color commentary on the city’s most powerful human beings. Read More

The Lobby

Joseph Harbert Envisions Colliers In The Top Tier

Joe Harbert

Joseph Harbert’s surprise jump from Cushman & Wakefield to Colliers International earlier this month puts him at the forefront of the company’s push to become one of the top real estate services firms.

“Our goal is to break into the top five,” Mr. Harbert told The Commercial Observer in his first conversation since joining Colliers Read More

The Sit-Down

The Retailer-In-Chief: Cushman & Wakefield Chief Executive Glenn Rufrano

Glenn Rufrano

During the International Council of Shopping Centers’ RECon in Las Vegas last week, Glenn Rufrano, Cushman & Wakefield’s chief executive, was a consistent and notable presence inside his company’s busy booth on the convention floor. The Commercial Observer spotted him several times in the middle of a constant pack of brokers and retail professionals congregating at the firm’s booth, in the midst of meetings and socializing. Although top-tier executives abound at ICSC, Mr. Rufrano was perhaps the highest-profile leader from a major real estate services firm to attend the conference and participate in such a hands-on manner. The Commercial Observer spoke with Mr. Rufrano last Tuesday, the last full day of the conference, in a private meeting room in C&W’s booth to get his take on the show and his plans for the future. Read More

The Lobby

Cushman & Wakefield COO Joseph Harbert Leaves For Colliers International

Joseph Harbert

Joseph Harbert, the chief operating officer for the New York Metro region for Cushman & Wakefield, has left the firm for a new job as president of the eastern region for Colliers International.

The move, which was first reported by Crain’s New York, is a sign that Colliers was focused on shoring up its presence in the New York City market.

“We hired Joe because he is a proven leader in the New York market,” Dylan Taylor, CEO of the U.S. division of Colliers, told Crain’s. “He has a tremendous track record of taking brokerages to leading positions in the New York market,” he added.

In a statement released this afternoon, Cushman & Wakefield CEO of the Americas Jim Underhill said:

“We wish Joe well and are happy for him. At the same time, we have ambitious plans to grow our New York operation aggressively as we have elsewhere around the country. We have been and will continue to look for both leaders as well as professionals who can take what is already a well established and top-performing firm to the next level.” Read More

Power Broker

The Head Hunter: Avison Young’s Greg Kraut on the Art of the Big Poach

Greg Kraut.

At CBRE Greg Kraut always seemed to be cut from a different cloth.

The real estate services firm is the biggest in the world, and in Manhattan its brokers handle many of the city’s largest commercial leases—deals that are often hundreds of thousands of square feet in size. In his mid-30s at the time, Mr. Kraut wasn’t focused on becoming a master of the city’s dealmaking universe. He liked to work alone, and he dedicated his time to smaller and mid-size deals—anywhere from 5,000 square feet to 20,000 square feet or more—and churned out transactions with notable consistency.

His track record earned him a different kind of reputation. From the list of deals he amassed at CBRE, it was easy to tell he had an undeniable knack for connecting with start-up companies and smaller tenants who had blossoming space requirements.

At a firm widely considered the city’s epicenter of brokerage, Mr. Kraut had carved out a quiet niche for himself. By building a stable of clients and sticking with them over the long term as they expanded, Mr. Kraut seemed to have firmly embraced a patient approach to the business that, with a lot of luck and hard work, could have, one day, placed him near CBRE’s top executives.

As it turns out, however, Mr. Kraut isn’t patient at all. Read More

The Lobby

Grubb & Ellis’ Top Agent Goes to Avison

Avison Young.

Michael Gottlieb, a top leasing executive formerly at Grubb & Ellis, is going to Avison Young, the Canadian real estate services firm making a push to bulk up substantially in Manhattan.

Mr. Gottlieb was one of most highly regarded dealmakers at Grubb & Ellis, which had lost brokerage talent as the firm faultered towards bankruptcy Read More

Career Moves

Mirante Expects Avison Young To Grow Quickly

Arthur Mirante and wife (photo: Ryan McCune/PatrickMcMullan.com

Arthur Mirante, Avison Young’s newly minted tri-state president, told The Commercial Observer in an exclusive interview yesterday evening that he is joining the company to build a brokerage firm from the ground up at what he described as an opportune moment in the industry.

“You have professionals who have reached a level where they don’t think they can continue to grow, maybe it’s crowded at their firm or their managers aren’t showing them the right kind of appreciation,” Mr. Mirante said. “I think that brokers see smaller companies as a greater opportunity to determine their own success whereas the larger companies might anoint relationships and kind of play favorites, holding some brokers back.” Read More

David Kaplansky Joins Colliers

David Kaplansky

David Kaplansky is leaving Jones Lang LaSalle to head to Colliers International.

Mr. Kaplansky is a veteran broker who has handled a number of sizable deals, including a 31,000-square-foot lease last year where he represented the Alzheimer’s Association in a renewal and expansion at 360 Lexington Avenue. Read More

Career Moves

Mirante Expected to Buoy Avison Young While Questions Linger for C&W

Bruce Mosler & Arthur Mirante at last year's Observer Power 100 Awards

Arthur Mirante, a former CEO and high-profile broker at Cushman & Wakefield, is leaving the firm to become the tri-state president of Avison Young, the real estate services company announced this morning.

The move gives the firm, which has a sizable presence in Canada but is only a budding brand here, a big name in the Manhattan real estate services industry.

Mr. Mirante was C&W’s longest serving chief executive, guiding the firm from the mid 1980s until 2005 when he ceded the position to Bruce Mosler, who he later partnered with in 2010 to form a top level brokerage team. Read More