Allison Melichar, 29

Allison Melichar.

Allison Melichar, 29

Vice president at JLL

Allison Melichar, 29
By October 4, 2020 11:41 PM

While most real estate professionals have taken the last seven months as a chance to perfect their sourdough bread starter, teach themselves Portuguese, finally read “Infinite Jest,” or watch every Tom Hanks movie ever made in reverse-alphabetical order, JLL (JLL)’s Allison Melichar has worked on the kind of deal that would qualify her as a bona fide real estate ninja assassin.

The deal was three simultaneous transactions for French banking behemoth BNP Paribas’ New York metro footprint, totaling 575,000 square feet. Melichar supported the transaction management team and led the analytics for the project. The majority of the deal was in place pre-pandemic, she said.

“We were hired in the spring of 2019,” Melichar said. “It was pretty much buttoned up before the pandemic started. But then, the world turn[ed] upside down, so we had to go back and negotiate a bit harder for our clients.”

BNP Paribas wound up taking space in 787 Seventh Avenue in Midtown, 525 Washington Boulevard in Jersey City, and 735 Chesterbrook Boulevard in Wayne, Penn., with all three deals closing in July just when many had been wringing their hands about the death of the big office lease.

This was not Melichar’s first rodeo doing analytics for a monster lease. Last year, she did the analysis for WWE’s 415,000-square-foot relocation to 677 Washington Boulevard in Stamford, Conn.

Melichar has been prepping for a career analyzing big real estate since the Long Island native attended Lehigh University. During her senior year, her “capstone project was a year-long project with four or five other people, and the assignment was valuing and coming up with a real estate strategy for the New York Times Building,” Melichar told CO. “We actually got to come to [then-]Forest City Ratner’s office for a presentation.”

She was given a tour of Barclays Center from then-FCR Chief Executive Officer MaryAnne Gilmartin, and networked with the likes of SL Green’s Marc Holliday, Larry Silverstein of Silverstein Properties and Cushman & Wakefield’s Tara Stacom.

“In 2013, when I started working full-time, I realized the majority of our project was so wrong!” There were all sorts of tax escalations she hadn’t known about as a mere college student. Still, the FCR folks were exceedingly polite, she said.

Melichar landed at JLL four years ago after a stint at Savills Studley — now just Savills — where she also worked on the consulting team. “It was analyzing occupancy strategies for their tenant clients and comparing different options for them,” she said. At JLL, the work hasn’t slowed down, even with the pandemic.

“It’s definitely been busy,” Melichar said. “I’m in a consulting role, not purely transactions, so it’s portfolio review, reading leases, understanding optionality, renegotiating or finding opportunities that exist. We were very, very busy for the first few months, looking for opportunities for my clients. That has definitely still been going on, and real deals are starting to happen. I’m optimistic.”

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