Stephen Winter is unabashedly, unequivocally, obsessed with real estate.
As a vice president of commercial leasing at Related Companies, Mr. Winter has spent countless hours helping to fill all of the office space at Hudson Yards, the 17-million-square-foot, 28-acre mixed-used development emerging on the West Side of Manhattan. By his own count, he dines with potential clients and those in the industry eight times a week to fuel business. And on weekends, Mr. Winter scouts out buildings as “market intelligence” to better understand who the tenants are and what they need out of their building.
2014 year in review
The Related Companies has closed on the acquisition of two sites along the High Line for the firm’s latest Hudson Yards development with a $125 million loan from Deutsche Bank, city records show.
Related acquired the properties at 511-525 West 18th Street, a low-rise garage west of the High Line, and 131 10th Avenue, a parking lot that occupies the full block between West 18th and 19th Streets, for $205 million.
The year that’s winding down was one of superlatives. The city’s most important anchor tenants began to assume occupancy in the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. One of the most prestigious department stores took a 250,000-square-foot lease in a planned neighborhood expected to be larger than most American cities’ central business districts. And one of the most progressive mayors in the country spent his first year in office implementing one of the most ambitious agendas.
But regardless of the headlines and the show-stopping deals that happened in 2014, concerns and controversies also linger, and questions about 2015 abound.
Bigtime law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom will relocate its New York City headquarters to the Hudson Yards area in the spring of 2020 through a 20-year lease at Brookfield Property Partners’ Manhattan West complex.
The firm, with 1,600 attorneys in 23 global offices, will move to the planned 2-million-square-foot, 67-story 1 Manhattan West tower at Ninth Avenue and West 33rd Street, a letter of intent signed and confirmed by officials at Brookfield and Skadden Arps says. The building will be part of Brookfield’s 7-million-square-foot mixed-use development.
Fairway supermarket chain may have gained attention for its expansion tear and accolades as a specialty retailer, but the company is looking to bail on at least one of its leases in Manhattan, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.
The lease in question is at Jack Resnick & Sons‘ 255 Greenwich Street in the Financial District with other Fairway lease transactions possibly facing the same fate.
David Marx’s 399-key hotel project near the Hudson Yards megaproject got a $60 million bridge loan from Related Fund Management and Highbridge Principal Strategies. The soon-to-rise Courtyard by Marriott sits at 461 10th Avenue, near 34th Street.
Related Fund Management, a subsidiary the transformative project’s developer, The Related Companies, launched the credit platform with New York-based investment firm Highbridge last year, with plans to invest $800 million in real estate debt, especially in gap financing.
The three-floor, 250,000-square-foot Neiman Marcus store that Hudson Yards partners Related Cos. and Oxford Properties Group announced for the Shops at Hudson Yards complex last week showcases the strength of the Related-led arrangement between the two companies, an executive at Oxford told Commercial Observer.
Related oversaw the deal that’s the first tenant the partners have announced for the 1-million-square-foot shopping center, said Dean Shapiro, the senior vice president of investment at the Toronto company that is the real estate division of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System.
Fashion department store Neiman Marcus will anchor the Shops at Hudson Yards retail complex in Hudson Yards between West 31st and West 32nd Streets on 10th Avenue through a 250,000-square-foot lease agreement the Dallas-based corporation signed with the Related Cos. and Oxford Properties Group on Tuesday, The New York Times reported today.
Neiman Marcus, the only retailer the Hudson Yards partners have announced so far for the 7-floor property, will enjoy prominent signage on the building’s facade and take space on floors five through seven starting in 2018.
Attorneys for Silverstein Properties will present their case for turning a two-acre Hudson Yards site at 520 West 41st Street into a 1,100-foot-tall residential and commercial tower in the proposal’s first public hearing at the Department of City Planning tomorrow morning.
The plan would turn “Projected Development Site 46” of the 2005 rezoning from a potential office tower to a mega-high rise with 1,400 residential units, 175 units of corporate housing, 300,000 square feet of retail space and a 10,000-square-foot covered public open space; and the Silverstein team will argue with Chairman Larry Silverstein‘s signature vehemence on Thursday that only residential development would unlock the potential of the site that’s adjacent to the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center and approaches to the Lincoln Tunnel.
Real Estate and Politics
Michael Samuelian, vice president of Related Companies, met with roughly a dozen members of the press yesterday to discuss the progress of mega mixed-use development Hudson Yards and to host a guided tour of the Eastern Rail Yard at the West Side development site.
Related’s tour focused on 10 Hudson Yards, the only building that’s above foundation level on the Eastern Rail Yard. Work on the Eastern Rail Yard commenced in March. The building at 10 Hudson Yards will be a 52-story, 1.7-million-square-foot commercial and retail building. So far the building is at 11 stories high.
A day after the New York City Building Congress forecasted the largest three-year growth in office space since 1990, the president of the organization, Richard Anderson, called on Mayor Bill de Blasio to do more to foster office construction in the city.
The influential organization of real estate developers, construction firms, union officials and academics predicted Monday that new developments would create 9 million square feet of new space between 2013 and 2015 and a total of 24.4 million square feet between 2010 and 2019. But Mr. Anderson cautioned that emerging trends might threaten new construction and said he wants the mayor to devote more energy to office space.
The 360 View
As deals continue to be signed by high-end retailers at the World Trade Center and Brookfield Place, the focus of New York retail leasing is firmly on lower Manhattan. But on the Far West Side, a 750,000-square-foot retail component is set to debut as part of the ambitious Hudson Yards development.
So far, only Fairway Market has officially committed to space at Hudson Yards. But with talk of a major department store being in negotiations, the acceleration of leasing is surely right around the corner.
Retail pros are aflutter as they schedule their appointments for the International Council of Shopping Centers’ RECon Las Vegas. Two companies in particular are preparing for a big debut on the first day of the three-day May trade show: Related Companies and Floored.
Floored, a company providing software for the 3-D visualization of real estate, is planning to showcase the 3-D modeling of Related’s 26-acre Hudson Yards at its booth at the convention, David Eisenberg, the chief executive of Floored, told Commercial Observer. The technology will give potential tenants a sense of what it will look and feel like to be at the Far West Side commercial and residential development upon its completion in 2018. (Representatives from Related were not available for comment at press time.)
Tishman Speyer has acquired adjacent, undeveloped parcels of land in the Hudson Yards district on Manhattan’s far West Side, the developer announced today.
The full-block site, located on 10th Avenue between 34th and 35th Streets, and the ability to purchase additional development rights will allow the firm to develop a 2.85 million-square-foot tower.
The unexamined life, as we all know, is not worth living. What, then, of the unquantified life? An existence that does not feed into a data set, whose lessons can only be gleaned via subjective analysis?
Well, in any case, that won’t be a concern for those planning to relocate to Hudson Yards. New York University has announced that it is teaming up with Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group to “measure and analyze key physical and environmental attributes at Hudson Yards,” a move that they say will help the nascent neighborhood to run as efficiently as possible when it comes to residential, retail, office and public space. And it will be boon to Related, which will be better able to manage its properties with expert feedback, and also, of course, to NYU, which will get a nice data set to work with.