2014 year in review
“It’s like in The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy,” said Bjarke Ingels, scrolling through images of gorgeous, multi-masted wooden sailboats on his phone, about to agree with Larry Silverstein who’d just extolled the fjords of Norway.
“Come here,” said Mr. Silverstein, gently interrupting, reaching out his arm, guiding Mr. Ingels away from the reception area and into his office at 7 World Trade Center.
“Can we come?” asked those who remained: a reporter, a photographer and two publicists (one each for Messers. Silverstein and Ingels).
Few people can sit in their office, crane their head slightly, and point out the window to the nearby skyscrapers they own. Larry Silverstein can.
The 83-year-old chairman of Silverstein Properties and master leaseholder and developer of the World Trade Center site invited Commercial Observer into his office on the 38th floor of 7 World Trade Center, motioning both in the direction of the existing and rising towers on the Trade Center site and the almost-topped out condo and Four Seasons hotel by Robert A.M. Stern at 30 Park Place. “It’s exciting as hell,” Mr. Silverstein said with his signature enthusiasm.
Silverstein Properties has named current chief investment officer Tal Kerret the company’s president, Silverstein chairman Larry Silverstein announced this morning.
Mr. Kerret joined Silverstein as an executive vice president in 2011, originating the Silver Suites Offices shared office space at 7 World Trade Center and managing the corporate and short-term rental housing at the Silver Suites Residences at Silver Towers and at Beekman Tower, company officials said.
Silverstein Properties scored a big win in late October after selling 1.6 billion in tax-exempt Liberty Bonds, paving the way for full construction of the firm’s long-stalled 3 World Trade Center tower. The financing marks the largest-ever unrated bond deal in the municipal market.
“The availability of that capital gives us the ability to lift the building above the eighth floor, where it is today,” Silverstein Properties Chairman Larry Silverstein said at a Commercial Observer breakfast panel on Nov. 5.
Who was the other guy with a full mustache who really liked to “High Five!!” everybody?
Getting timing right is always a tricky proposition. But at Commercial Observer‘s breakfast panel discussion on development in Lower Manhattan in honor of the launch of CO‘s 2014 Owners Magazine, Mary Ann Tighe, CEO of CBRE decided to get specific about when Lower Manhattan was going to kick into gear.
Just how hot is Lower Manhattan? So hot, so in demand and so desirable that the advertising firm Droga5 (a $100 million business and the 10th fastest growing business in the city) decided to eschew the normal Madison Avenue address for new offices at the World Trade Center.
World Trade Center master planner Daniel Libeskind’s office library contains nearly a dozen bookcases filled with books about philosophy, religious studies, history, travel, literature, art, architecture, design and other fields and genres. And when Commercial Observer visited Studio Daniel Libeskind three blocks south of the trade center site, he described the necessity in his work of the same four components Herman Melville wishes for in Moby Dick: time, strength, cash and patience.
He had invoked the same line a few days days earlier during a trade center construction update event at 4 World Trade Center timed for the week of the 13th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The four necessities have helped rebuild the site where 2,753 New Yorkers lost their lives and fulfill the vision that guided the nation-sized group of stakeholders to the site’s current status, he told a room full of local and international media outlets and several of the interested parties themselves.
Independent investment research provider Morningstar will move its New York City offices from Midtown to downtown in the middle of 2015 through a 10-year, 30,000-square-foot lease at 4 World Trade Center, Silverstein Properties announced today.
The company that currently operates out of a 7,500-square-foot office at 1065 Avenue of the Americas near Bryant Park will join the city government of New York, trade center site owner the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and the MediaMath company at 4 WTC by taking space on the 48th floor of the award-winning 2.3-million-square-foot skyscraper designed by Fumihiko Maki, said Joe Mansueto, chairman and CEO of Morningstar.
World Trade Center
Less than an hour after he left the stage at an event about the World Trade Center‘s progress ahead of the 9/11 anniversary, Silverstein Properties chairman Larry Silverstein invited reporters for a look at the Four Seasons hotel and condo development that’s rising just two blocks away from the trade center complex at 30 Park Place.
The 926-foot Robert A.M. Stern-designed building will feature 189 hotel rooms on the first 39 floors and 157 luxury condos leading up to the 82nd floor, including 11 penthouses with outdoor terraces starting on the 75th floor, when it opens in early 2016, according to Silverstein.
World Trade Center developer Larry Silverstein, master plan architect Daniel Libeskind and Port Authority of New York & New Jersey Vice Chairman Scott Rechler praised the progress of the 16-acre trade center site today in a “World Trade Center update” event timed for the week of the Sept. 11 anniversary.
Messrs. Silverstein, Libeskind and Rechler and a slew of other officials sought to draw attention to the strength of the downtown real estate market, Mr. Libeskind’s vision for the site and the now-on-track construction schedule as the process of rebuilding on the site nears the end of its 13th year.
Wells Fargo provided a $230 million Fannie Mae loan to Silverstein Properties to refinance its River Place rental tower at 650 West 42nd Street on the corner of 12th Avenue, the borrower confirmed to Mortgage Observer.
The seven-year interest-only loan carries a rate below 3.5 percent and replaces existing securitized debt on the property that is nearing maturity, Silverstein Properties Chief Executive Officer Marty Burger said. Ackman-Ziff served as a broker on the transaction.
Larry Silverstein‘s Silverstein Properties is seeking a permit to demolish a Hudson Yards building, according to a Department of Buildings document. That would pave the way for the developer’s planned mixed-use tower, which would soar 1,100 feet into the sky.
Attorneys for Silverstein Properties presented their case for changing the zoning of the Hudson Yards site at 520 West 41st Street in the proposal’s first public hearing at the Department of City Planning at the end of last month, as Commercial Observer previously reported.
World Trade Center
The Board of Commissioners of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey voted unanimously today for a new financing scheme for the completion of office tower 3 World Trade Center, but stopped short of issuing a $1.2 billion loan guarantee.
The plan retains most of the funding provisions in the original 2010 agreement between the Port Authority, which owns the 16-acre site, and Silverstein Properties, which is developing it.
Silverstein Properties invited Commercial Observer for an exclusive three-hour tour of the ear-popping existing buildings on the World Trade Center site, and the views were stunning. Even after a difficult week in which the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey thwarted Chairman Larry Silverstein‘s effort to get additional construction financing for 3 World Trade Center, Read More