SL Green Realty Corp. is nearing completion of its 12-month, $15 million renovation and recombining of what used to be two separate buildings at 635-641 Avenue of the Americas between West 19th and West 20th Streets, Steven Durels, the company’s director of leasing and real property, told Commercial Observer. The company owns two of the three buildings that used to comprise one department store in the Ladies Mile Historic District after architect William Hume completed it in 1902. And shortly after purchasing the two buildings for $173 million in 2012, SL Green set about turning the building at 635 Avenue of the Americas, which had become an auto mechanic instruction school, into the second half of a repositioned office property. “When we bought the building, it was apparent to us that there was the opportunity to create something special,” Mr. Durels said. The building at 641 was already a complete office building. Read More
At the start of the current school year last month, Pace University unveiled the second phase of its renovation project at Pace Performing Arts’ home at 140 William Street.
Plans included the conversion of the seventh floor and penthouse into a design studio, sound studio, mechanical and electrical equipment rooms and a rooftop terrace for special events. Read More
The Kaufman Organization’s ongoing renovations of three Midtown South office buildings in what was once known as the “Ring Portfolio” are moving forward with a new name and a very new look.
The company, which in April acquired four buildings that it now calls the “Madison Square Portfolio” through a 99-year lease with Extell Development Company, is sprucing up three of the long-vacant properties—19 West 24th Street,13 West 27th Street and 45 West 27th Street—ahead of a planned June 2015 occupancy date, said Grant Greenspan, a principal with Kaufman. (The fourth building in the portfolio is already open at 119-125 West 24th Street.) Read More
A former garage in Greenwich Village will welcome luxury condo residents in the spring of 2015 through a conversion by CetraRuddy. Developers DHA Capital and Continental Properties are turning 12 East 13th Street into an 8-unit residence and ground-floor retail property after the architecture firm designed a 4-story glass addition featuring terraced homes and a 5,700-square-foot penthouse with an asking price of $30.5 million, according to a listing on the condo development’s website. “We really wanted to plan each apartment so that they would have these magnificent living rooms,” said John Cetra, AIA, the founding principal of CetraRuddy. “It’s a building where I think the apartments really feel like home.” Read More
When tech advertising firm FreeWheel Media, which was recently acquired by Comcast Corporation, decided to move to a full-floor space at 275 Seventh Avenue, the company knew it wanted an open plan with collaborative offices and break-out spaces.
FreeWheel hired the architecture firm Fogarty Finger, which two years ago started a $10 million renovation of the 600,000-square-foot Art Deco building, to design its 19,000-square-foot 24th floor office. Read More
The Brooklyn Whale Building, a 400,000-square-foot industrial property along the Sunset Park waterfront, is being redesigned for commercial tenants, especially those in the tech, media and creative arts fields.
Boddewyn Gaynor Architects is working on the $5 million renovation of the seven-floor, full-block former Whale Oil Company headquarters at 14 53rd Street. 601 West Associates, headed by Harry Skydell, acquired the site in 2011 for $25.4 million and the renovations commenced about two years ago. Read More
Since GLG moved into its two-floor, 64,000-square-foot office at 60 East 42nd Street early last month, the 245 employees in the one-on-one professional learning firm’s New York City headquarters have enjoyed an office with a full-service barista bar, 33 conference rooms named after historical figures and a ping pong table for active five-minute breaks. Dennis O’Brien, the firm’s vice president of IT and office operations, and Richard Socarides, its head of public affairs, called from one of the office’s sound-sealed conference call rooms to dish on the space designed by Clive Wilkinson Architects. “People walk around smiling,” Mr. Socarides said of the staff’s reaction to their new digs near Grand Central. “For us, the experience has been amazing because it shows us how much the physical environment can transform the work experience.” Read More
The Related Companies’ 55 Hudson Yards, a 51-story, 1.4 million-square-foot office tower rising from 11th Avenue between 33rd and 34th Streets, will offer a terrace overlooking the adjacent Hudson River Park and its surroundings to whoever snaps up the 28,000-square-foot 10th floor. Related and its partner, Oxford Properties Group, tapped master architects Eugene Kohn, of Kohn Pederson Fox, and Kevin Roche, of Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates, to design the tower, slated to be standing by the end of 2017; and the two veterans arranged it with a 10-floor base that opens into a prime tier where the building sets back. “We think it’s a spectacular floor,” said Andrew Cantor, a Related vice president who is on the firm’s Hudson Yards team. “We would expect a larger user might want to take it as part of a bigger occupation.” Read More
When Bushwick-based studio and design incubator 3rd Ward shuttered suddenly last year, the ambitious 1000 Dean Street development in Crown Heights lost its anchor tenant. The 40,000 square feet worth of space earmarked for 3rd Ward includes 30,000 square feet space on the ground floor of the building, a former Studebaker service station. That space Read More
The prominent human rights organization Physicians for Human Rights has relocated from Cambridge, Mass. into its new 8,000-square-foot headquarters at 256 West 38th Street, where the Nobel Peace Prize it won jointly as a member of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines now greets guests. Founded in 1986, PHR uses medicine and science to help prevent and stop atrocities and severe human rights violations and has conducted investigations in more than 40 countries around the world. The nonprofit wanted to retain the space’s open plan on a “tight budget,” said Asifa Tirmizi, a co-founder with Scot Campbell of Tirmizi Campbell, the designer of the office. The result: a light-filled space that retains its industrial charm but with an array of contemporary additions. “The warm palate of the conference center contrasts nicely with the organic feel of the workstations,” said Ms. Tirmizi, who discussed the look and feel of a headquarters worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize winner. Read More
Last year, Brookfield Office Properties signed about 580,000 square feet of tenants at 250 Vesey Street, which is part of Brookfield Place. This is a data point that Brookfield is very proud of, said Matt Cherry, the company’s director of investor relations and communications. One of the contributing factors to the leasing success was that Brookfield built Read More
Taconic Investment Partners, the company behind the renovation of Google’s home at 111 Eighth Avenue, has undertaken a $25 million renovation of the BankNote building at 890 Garrison Avenue in the South Bronx. JRT Realty is marketing a newly redesigned 10,710-square-foot space on the fifth floor (a.k.a. the Lafayette Wing ) of the 400,000-square-foot Read More
Occupied for 20 years by a video post-production company, the third and fourth floors have become available at Abramson Brothers’ 315 Madison Avenue. Part of the company’s portfolio for half a century, 315 Madison Avenue offers both unique proximity to Grand Central Terminal and relative value compared to neighboring Midtown South, with asking rents of $48 per square foot. Ideally suited for a new media company searching for value compared to the surging submarket to the south, 315 Madison Avenue also offers unique opportunities for any general office user. Adam Abramson, the vice president of Abramson Brothers, spoke to The Commercial Observer last week about the unique vacancy. Read More
Vacant for more than a year, two adjacent West Village retail spaces have hit the market at 135 Seventh Avenue South and 163 West 10th Street. Formerly the home of an Italian bakery, Landbrot Bakery & Bar, that “thrived for 15 years,” according to the listing’s broker, and a barbershop, each space has the opportunity to be reinvented by tenants, including possible restaurants. Initially envisioned for a single tenant, the individual spaces have since been subdivided to accommodate separate occupants. Tom Brady of Town spoke to The Commercial Observer last week about the opportunities. Read More
Having opened up in Cobble Hill last year, aptsandlofts.com is expanding once again, this time into Bedford-Stuyvesant, where the brokerage has taken a 2,000-square-foot bi-level storefront space—with fully landscaped backyard no less—at 308 Malcolm X Boulevard.
The space is designed to be able to support 45 agents and support staff, though it’s expected to be occupied by 25 when it opens early next year. David Maundrell, the company’s founder and president, spoke to The Commercial Observer last week about expanding into Bed-Stuy and the unique features of the space.
“A lot more transactions are happening in Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights,” he said. “This will be a jumping off point for us in Bed-Stuy, Crown Heights, Clinton Hill, Bushwick and even Ridgewood, Queens.”