Bill Ackman and Georgetown Near Closing on 787 11th Avenue, Plan for Rooftop Tennis


787 11th Avenue.
787 11th Avenue. Photo: CoStar Group

A partnership between The Georgetown Company and an Ackman family-controlled investment fund is near closing on 787 11th Avenue, Commercial Observer has learned, and plans to build a tennis court atop the building.

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Investor Bill Ackman’s hedge fund, Pershing Square Capital Management, will move into part of the eight-story building, a source with knowledge of the sale said. Georgetown chief executive officer Adam Flatto led the purchase, and brought the Ackman fund in as a partner, the source added.  

Ford Motor Company, which had owned the building since buying it for $73 million in the late-1990s, put it on the market in March with industry pros speculating it could sell for at least $230 million. It wasn’t immediately clear how much the deal closed for.

Darcy Stacom and Bill Shanahan of CBRE were tapped by Ford to market the property. Mr. Shanahan did not return a request for comment.

The New York Post reported last week that the buyers had entered a “hard contract” to buy the West Side building between West 54th and West 55th Streets.

Spokesmen for Georgetown and Pershing declined to comment. Ford did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Mr. Ackman is also planning to build at least one tennis court on the roof of the building, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the deal. They described the finance big-wig as an “an avid tennis player” and a “fanatic” over the sport.

Residential and retail interest on the strip of 11th Avenue between West 42nd and West 57th Streets, which has long been home to auto dealerships, has skyrocketed, as CO reported last week. This has put area auto dealerships in a pinch when it comes to expansion or relocation.

Jaguar and Land Rover are currently on a month-to-month lease at the ground level of 787 11th Avenue. It is unclear at this time if new ownership is planning to keep the auto retailers as a tenant.