January 11th - January 15th, 2010
Mural wonâ€™t be displayed at Ground Zero
January 11 – It’s unclear if the Port Authority is going to re-open a competition to design a mural to cover part of the construction fence at Ground Zero. The New York Times reports the mural that was to have been placed there will instead be erected several blocks away at Louise Nevelson Plaza on Maiden Lane and William Street. The PA said, “We didn’t think ultimately that any of the submissions was extraordinary enough, given that it’s the World Trade Center fence.” The design competition was announced last August.
Esplanade Plans Unveiled
January 11- The City’s Economic Development Corporation announced a $150 million redevelopment of a 1,165 foot section of the waterfront, including paving stones, benches and wood railings. Community Board 1 objected to one part of the plan- a 6 foot high aluminum wall serving as a barrier between the bike path and the walkway; the Board wants the wall to be limited to four feet or eliminated entirely, according to a report in The Tribeca Trib. The plan goes now to the City’s Public Design Commission.
The Redesigned Boathouse Closer to Reality
January 11 – There will be more boats and kayaks and fewer diners at the Boathouse. The project was revamped to accommodate 228 kayak slips and according to The Tribeca Trib, the bar and restaurant space was reduced. Construction is expected to take nine months; the new Boathouse is expected to open in time for the 2011 season.
Blasting Begins at the WTC site
January 12- For the next three months, the Port Authority will be conducting controlled blasting as part of the removal of bedrock to construct the transportation hub. DNAINFO.com. reports the blasts will begin at 7 a.m. and all efforts will be taken to minimize noise and dust.
More lease signings in FiDi
January 12 – Choice Logistics, an international service provider, cut a deal to add 7,000 square feet to its current lease at 1 Whitehall Street. The New York Post also reported RCN NY Communications signed a deal, adding approximately 24,000 square feet to its existing 20,000 feet at 55 Broad Street. That building also signed Align Communications to a whole floor, 24,707 feet. The city of New York extended its lease at 60 Broad for 313,000 square feet until April 2020, according to GlobeSt.com. The state of New York also resigned its lease for 480,000 square feet until 2019.
Goldman Sachs and BPCA reach an agreement
January 13 – Goldman Sachs will be paying $161 million in ground rent for its new headquarters building at 200 West Street. The Battery Park City Broadsheet Daily reports negotiations have been going on for the past six months with the City urging Goldman to accept its good faith efforts to meet a series of deadlines at the WTC site. One of those milestones is the NYPD security plan for the site which has been completed, but won’t be implemented for several more years. The money has been in an escrow account since 2005.
2010 Real Estate Expected to Level in 2010
January 14 – Cushman and Wakefield and CB Richard Ellis say the real estate market is turning a corner toward a gradual recovery. GlobeSt.com reports both firms don’t think there will be an extreme turnaround this year; they predict the vacancy rate, now at about 11.1% could go higher, but not above 12.5%. Joseph Harbert, COO at C & W said, “The wholesale dumping of space is over, and at some point we’re going back to realizing we live in a space-constrained city.”
Performing Arts Center Remains on site
January 15 – The Port Authority announced the 1,000 seat theatre will be built next to One World Trade Center, the space originally intended for it. There had been discussion of situating the PAC on land now occupied by 130 Liberty Street, but in a report in The Tribeca Trib, the PA said the north side of the WTC side is the most appropriate location. Construction on the steel columns and sheer walls for the PAC will begin in a few weeks. The LMDC has pledged $50 million for the design and construction, but said the center will need more funding to become a reality.
Spielberg to Produce WTC Documentary
January 15 –The Discovery and Science channels announced it will create a six-part documentary series, “Rebuilding Ground Zero,” and Steven Spielberg will be the Executive Producer. The series will use 3D, time-lapse cameras and computer modeling techniques to portray the engineering and building of the site, as well as the impact of the redevelopment on Lower Manhattan. The series is set to air in 2011.
More Outreach Needed for Program
January 15 – Pace University found only a third of the businesses in Lower Manhattan knew about the program, according to a report in The Downtown Express. The program, run by LMDC, has given $2.3 million to 135 businesses in the past two years; Community Board 1 says it found some business owners who could have used the money, but were not aware of the program. LMDC said it has visited more than 320 businesses, but pledged to make improvements to the program. The $5 million grant program sunsets at the end of 2010.
4 New York Plaza Sold
January 15 – The 25 story 4 New York Plaza building was sold to Harbor Group International for approximately $107 million, according to a report in GlobeSt.com. JP Morgan Chase has leased back a substantial portion of the 1.1 million square foot building and remains the primary tenant.