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October 2014

October 2014 » Market Analysis » NY New Developments

October 2014: NYC New Building Developments


New Developments

Microsoft's Stores move to Fifth Avenue is official. The software and video game company confirmed that it will open a flagship at 677 Fifth Avenue as part of a continued expansion of the company's retail presence. Microsoft will occupy 8,700-square-foot across two-floors at the Fifth Avenue location..

The boutique fitness scene seems to be pushing out many mid-tier players, snapping up a growing number of leases and paying good rents for commercial landlords.


New York City's tech firms are bumping into a new problem: a lack of open office space. Many of these companies rent offices in the city's old industrial buildings, where employees sit at long tables in large open spaces. But, as many of the fast-growing companies are finding out, there's a legal limit to how many people can fit in such a space.

New York University and the city went before a panel of judges to appeal an earlier ruling that could prevent a portion of the school's $6 billion 2031 expansion plan from proceeding. The school and city sought to overturn a decision that protects three Greenwich Village green spaces (Mercer Playground, LaGuardia Park and Corner Gardens) from being demolished to make way for three new NYU buildings. In January, a Judge ruled that City Council had erred in allowing the plan to move forward, noting that because the land had been used as parks for so long, it deserved the protection afforded to parks.

The landmark Martha Washington Hotel made its official debut under Chelsea Hotels founder Ed Scheetz. The unveiling marks the first major revamp of the property since Scheetz rebranded the former King and Grove hotel family and transformed the boutique NoMad property into a full service hotel. The 29 East 29th Street Renaissance Revival style hotel, formerly known as the King and Grove New York, underwent millions of dollars in renovations to bring the property which was a former all-women's hotel that has operated under multiple names since 1903, into the 21st century as a luxury boutique property.

A Midtown-based financial services firm and a real estate investment firm jointly acquired the landmarked BankNote Building for $114 million. The seller paid $32.5 million for the 400,000-square-foot former currency-printing site at 890 Garrison Avenue in the South Bronx back in 2007. In recent years, the city's Human Resources Administration signed for 200,000 square feet and two schools signed for a total of 60,000 square feet.

Hundreds of hotel rooms will soon be coming online in the Bronx. Several plans are now in place for new hotel developments across the borough. The projects come in the wake of the opening of several upscale lodging facilities in the borough in recent years. The Opera House Hotel, for one, which is located on East 149th Street, opened in December.

The nonprofit organization that runs an East Village nursing home for AIDS patients could face an uphill battle in its effort to sell its building, largely due to the terms of a deed granted two decades ago. Last month, VillageCare said it would close its 206-bed facility at 45 Rivington Street between Forsyth and Eldridge streets, since its services were no longer needed since fewer New Yorkers die from AIDS these days. However, the 1993 deed on the property requires that it be operated in perpetuity as a not-for-profit residential health care facility.

A Developer filed plans for a nine-story, 30,000-square-foot hotel in the South Bronx. The planned 75-room hotel at 335 Grand Concourse, near East 140th Street, is moving forward due to the Lower Concourse rezoning in 2009. A Forest Hills-based architect is handling the design.

The development of the 5 World Trade Center site could remain stalled for years due to a dispute between the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the organization charged with rebuilding Downtown Manhattan following the Sept. 11th attacks.

Public and private property owners in New York City launched $3.6 billion worth of alteration and renovation projects during the first half of the year. Spending on building upgrades is on pace to surpass the $5.7 billion from 2013. That amount was a 5 percent jump from 2012, when renovation starts cost roughly $5.4 billion. Renovations of office space accounted for $1.2 billion of project spending so far this year. There was $2.1 billion spent on offices in all of 2013, a 66 percent increase from 2012.

Grand Central looks to be slated to undergo a $210 million transformation that will result in four new staircases to the subway platforms, two new street entrances, a revamped mezzanine and a brand new 4,000-square-foot waiting area.

It seems to be official that Neiman Marcus will anchor the 1 million-square-foot Hudson Yards retail complex developed by the Related Companies and Oxford Property Group, named the Shops at Hudson Yards.

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