Golf Club in Hand, Trump Fills Last Retail Space at 40 Wall
Laura Kusisto Aug. 16, 2010, 12:03 p.m.
40 Wall Street
It is possible to fill 50,000 square feet of retail space in the financial district in July. But it certainly helps to have the Trump touch.
Milk Street Cafe has signed a 20-year lease for 27,000 square feet, taking the last of the retail space at 40 Wall Street. The Boston-based caterer will open its first New York location, kitty corner from the Stock Exchange.
Duane Reade also recently took 23,000 square feet in the building. The two deals combined are “the largest block of retail leased in the financial district in over 10 years,” according to the Trump Organization.
“It’s certainly a challenging market, but the building has great bones, great history,” Donald Trump Jr. (pictured) told The Commercial Observer. The negotiations took two months, but Mr. Trump declined to give the asking rent.
When Donald Trump Sr. bought the 70-story building 15 years ago, he filled it almost right away, meaning a huge number of leases all expired at once-as it happened, near the bottom of the market.
“We saw it coming,” the younger Mr. Trump said of the looming vacancies. He started playing golf with the downtown brokers. “If I can get the first shot, there’s a good chance I’ll make a deal,” he said.
In the last 18 months, Trump has filled more than 435,000 square feet of office and retail at 40 Wall. But that doesn’t necessarily mean the retail market is rebounding. “I’d like to say it applies to the whole city,” Mr. Trump said. “But I think it’s more of a testament to the building.”
His next project is to fill up the building’s commercial space, but he wouldn’t say how long it would take. “No real estate conversation would be complete without a ‘crystal ball’ reference,” he said. Of course, he doesn’t have one.
“This will stay my baby,” Mr. Trump added.
In the Milk Street transaction, the landlord was represented by Mr. Trump Jr. and Jeffrey Lichtenberg, along with CB Richard Ellis‘ Andrew Goldberg, Eric Gelber and Matt Chmieklecki.
The tenant was represented by Cushman & Wakefield‘s Joanne Podell and Matt Siegel.