Leases  ·  Retail

West Side Campaign Against Hunger Opens 15K-SF Washington Heights Location


The West Side Campaign Against Hunger (WSCAH) is expanding to a new base of operations in Washington Heights.

The 45-year-old Upper West Side food pantry signed a 20-year lease to open a warehouse and distribution space in 15,000 square feet on the ground floor of 549 West 180th Street, according to tenant brokers, Open Impact Real Estate

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Open Impact did not disclose the asking rent in the deal, but a spokesperson for the brokerage said asking rent for retail space in Washington Heights ranges from $60 to $90 per square foot.

WSCAH opened in 1979 in the basement of St. Paul and St. Andrew United Methodist Church at 263 West 86th Street. It was the first food pantry to run a supermarket-style food distribution site, a model now widely adopted across the country, according to its website.

The food pantry will keep its doors open on the Upper West Side and the new digs will allow it to increase its refrigeration capacity from 1,800 pounds to 54,000 pounds, according to its website. WSCAH held a ribbon-cutting for the space earlier this month.

The exact size of WSCAH’s space in the 86th Street church is unclear, but a source with knowledge of the deal said the 15,000-square-foot expansion more than doubles the organization’s total footprint. 

Open Impact co-founder Lindsay Ornstein said the two-story building between St. Nicholas and Audubon avenues was a lucky find since it satisfies the unique needs of WSCAH.

“This location gives them easy access to the highway system, significantly larger storage and warehousing capacity, and curb cuts so trucks can back,” said Ornstein, who brokered the deal for WSCAH with colleagues Stephen Powers and Jake Cinti. “Plus, it adds office space and a really welcoming retail experience for customers. It was a huge challenge to find.”

Landlord Colliers (CIGI) was represented in-house by Dina Bakalis. A spokesperson for Colliers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital occupies most of the second floor of the Washington Heights building, where it operates a health clinic for women, infants and children, according to its website.

 Abigail Nehring can be reached at