Ziel Feldman, HFZ Capital Group


2013 Owners MagazineFavorite charity? 

Sheba Medical Center. My wife, Helene, is on the board, and we are both strong supporters of Sheba and the great work that it is doing in Israel.

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Real estate prediction for 2014? 

Condo prices will continue to soar amid strong demand and limited supply.

Where in New York is there still untapped potential for real estate development? 

I have found that there is tremendous opportunity in deals with not-for-profits, churches and synagogues, many of which have untapped air rights and require joint venture development to unlock the value. Also in the conversion of existing, beautiful, old buildings that are in need of attention and restoration.

Who will become New York City’s next mayor?  

Hopefully someone who is pro-business and desires to continue with Bloomberg’s legacy.

What real estate policy should New York’s next mayor make a priority?   

Tax incentive programs that continue to stimulate development in the city.

What qualities do you look for in an agent representing your buildings? 

Professionalism, integrity, smarts. We retain the top agents who can best market and sell our buildings. They are experienced, understand the market and what buyers are looking for, assist us in creating the most efficient, beautiful layouts and have international reach.

What is one aspect of your business you wish you had more time for? 

Mentoring young professionals in the business. I see young, bright rising stars and wish I could dedicate more of my time to cultivating and nurturing talent. It’s important to give back.

Greatest fear: 

A new administration that is not cognizant of the importance to the city of a favorable business climate.

If approved, the Midtown East rezoning initiative will: 

Create a surge of new development in Midtown and devalue the Downtown office market.

In the film version of your life, which actor would portray you? 

Ray Liotta or Al Pacino (but taller and younger).

Foreign real estate market you’d most like to invest in: 

New York is currently the best market to be investing in.

Is broadband connectivity in New York City a priority at your buildings? 

Yes, particularly in our luxury condo buildings where purchasers now value technological advancement including broadband connectivity, units that are prewired for it and have capability to be remotely programmed. It’s a huge selling point.

What should happen with Madison Square Garden and Penn Station? 

They need to be redeveloped. Both buildings are old and inefficient. Penn Station should be redeveloped with greater efficiencies, better space planning and newer systems. The Knicks deserve a nicer home.

What New York City building should be torn down? 

Penn Station. It’s really an eyesore.