The Times Square Marriott at 701 Seventh Avenue has set a new record for the purchase price of Theater District air rights, paying $409 per square foot for 44,968 square feet of air rights, according to city records. The air rights were purchased by a development consortium led by the Witkoff Group, from the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre and The Booth Theatre, as Commercial Observer previously reported. It will allow the new mixed-use development on the corner of Seventh Avenue and 47th Street to rise to 500 feet, bringing the building’s total square footage to 269,892 square feet.
The sale marked the first time that air rights in the Theater District Transfer District, which was created by the city in 1998 to allow landmarked theaters to cash out on their unused air rights, had surpassed $400 per square foot, according to an analysis performed for the Observer by TenantWise, a real estate services and advisory company.
Lower Manhattan 2013
SHoP Architects, one of the city’s leading architecture firms, has signed a 15-year, 30,500-square-foot lease at The Woolworth Building at 233 Broadway, where it will relocate in the fall from its headquarters across the street.
The move to one of the city’s most storied buildings seems suitable for an architecture firm that has climbed the Read More
Manhattan Market Report
The luxury residential real estate market has soared to unprecedented heights in the past year, in terms of both price tags and building heights. But none of today’s $100 million penthouses rest atop a quintessential New York building. That will change next year, when new condominiums at the Woolworth Building hit the market.
Last August, The New York Times reported that Alchemy Properties had paid $68 million in a deal with building owners the Witkoff Group and Cammeby’s International to turn the top 30 floors of the 100-year-old landmark building into 40 luxury apartments—including a trophy penthouse spanning a whopping five stories at the top.
An unprecedented sevenfold increase in retail property sales fueled the Manhattan commercial real estate sales market’s epic comeback in the fourth quarter – its strongest performance since 2007, according to preliminary data from Eastern Consolidated.
The hallmark quarter, with nearly $13 billion in sales volume – the strongest since record-breaking performances in 2007 (peaking at $19 billion in Q2 of 2007) – was triggered by fears of impending capital gains taxes, which had owners scrambling to unload properties before year’s end.
“This was definitely fiscal-driven growth,” said Barbara Byrne Denham, Eastern Consolidated’s chief economist. “Sellers wanted to cash out and buyers knew it, so they were eager to come to the table as well.”
If You Have to Ask You Can't Afford It
A venture between the Witkoff Group, Maefield Development, Infinity Urban Century–and New Valley, an investment unit of Vector Group–completed the $430 million acquisition of a development site at 701 Seventh Avenue in Times Square, where it plans to build a 340,000-square-foot, 36-story, multi-use complex. Times Square Gateway Center, located between Seventh Avenue and 47th Street, will feature retail space, a hotel tower and the nation’s largest single LED screen for Broadway’s iconic lights and advertising.
Steven Kassin, co-managing partner of Infinity Urban Century, confirmed the amount of the investment to The Commercial Observer.
Barry Sternlicht’s Starwood Property Trust and Starwood Capital Group provided $475 million in combined acquisition and construction financing for the development. The loan will have an initial funding of $375 million with $100 million of future funding for redevelopment costs and also contains an equity participation right for the lender.
The Woolworth Building, a New York City landmark and icon, may soon see its top 30 floors developed as luxury condos, according to a report by Michelle Higgins in the Times.