Will 9/11 Museum Deal Lead to Land Sale?
The recent agreement between Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Michael Bloomberg (who oversees the 9/11 Memorial Foundation) may lead to finalizing a much-delayed swap of a patch of land that is part of the World Trade Center redevelopment, according to a recent Reuters report.
Otherwise known as “Site 5”, the land, where the Deutsche Bank building once stood, could be sold for upwards of $200 million. In the new accord the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation must honor a 2006 agreement by handing over Site 5 to the Port Authority, in exchange for the title to the 8 acres the museum and memorial take up on the World Trade Center site, Reuters reports.
“Under the 2006 agreement, it (Site 5) is supposed to be swapped for the eight acres on which the museum and memorial are located,” said Port Authority Vice Chairman Scott Rechler to Reuters on Tuesday. Both parties have 6 months to finalize the deal.
Unlike the World Trade Center land, which can only be used for commercial development, Site 5 can be used for apartments, a hotel or offices.
“The site would be most valuable if it supported apartments with a hotel on the lower floors,” said Robert Von Ancken, chairman of Landauer Valuation & Advisory, a division of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank.
A combined hotel and apartments could sell for between $135 million and $150 million, based on comparable sales in the area, the height of the building and the market at the time, he said.
This is welcome news to the Port Authority, which has been dealing with budget problems related to both the World Trade Center and high turnover among senior leadership at the bi-state agency.