Power Landlords: The Guys Who’ve Got the Biggest Portfolios in New York


Brookfield Asset Management was able to see the forest for the trees.

When the Toronto-based alternative asset manager acquired Forest City Realty Trust at the end of last year, it became the largest single commercial landlord in New York City.

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The $11.4 billion purchase (including debt) included 11 million square feet of office space and 18,500 apartments nationwide, according to a spokesman. Of that, 5 million square feet of office space is in Gotham, including the New York Times Building at 620 Eighth Avenue and the 16-acre MetroTech Center in Downtown Brooklyn.

According to a CoStar Group analysis on April 5, Brookfield has some 34.2 million square feet of space in New York.

Ric Clark, the chairman of Brookfield Property Group and Brookfield Property Partners, said this new status could perhaps be the firm’s greatest accomplishment this year.

This is just the latest city in which Brookfield reigns as the biggest owner of commercial real estate. Other cities include Los Angeles, Houston, London, Toronto, Calgary and Perth.

SL Green comes in second, per CoStar data. With all of its 28.6 million square feet in Manhattan, SL Green is the largest landlord in the borough. Andrew Mathias, the president of SL Green, said via a spokeswoman, “Over the course of our history, SL Green’s market penetration covers in excess of 25 percent of the Manhattan office inventory.” (Brookfield is second in Manhattan with 26.6 million square feet.) SL Green’s assets include the 1.5-million-square-foot Graybar Building at 420 Lexington Avenue and One Madison Avenue, the former Metropolitan Life Insurance Building (the under-construction One Vanderbilt—the 1.7-million-square-foot office development by Grand Central Terminal—wouldn’t be included in the CoStar count).

Citywide, Vornado Realty Trust is the third-biggest property owner with 26.8 million square feet, 25.7 million square feet of which is in Manhattan (making it No. 3 in the borough). Vornado, which a large foothold in the Penn Plaza market, owns 1 and 2 Penn Plaza.

Fourth is Tishman Speyer with 15.5 million square feet, all of which is in Manhattan (making it No. 4 in Manhattan). Its assets include the 3.1-million-square-foot MetLife Building at 200 Park Avenue and Rockefeller Center, the 8.8-million-square-foot six square blocks between Fifth Avenue and Avenue of the Americas, from West 48th to West 51st Streets. Of the total, 8.2 million is office space, and the balance is retail.

RXR Realty ranks fifth with 15.3 million square feet. Of RXR’s holdings, 14.2 million square feet is in Manhattan, placing the firm fifth in the borough. RXR’s assets include the Helmsley Building, a 1.4-million-square-foot edifice at 230 Park Avenue; the 623,000-square-foot 75 Rockefeller Plaza; and the 2.3-million-square-foot Starrett-Lehigh Building at 601 West 26th Street. (The City of New York would actually rank fourth citywide with 26.7 million square feet, CoStar data indicate, though only eighth in Manhattan with 10.4 million square feet.)