February 23rd - February 27th, 2009
NYC to Diversify Economy
February 23 – Deputy Mayor Robert Lieber is predicting that most of the financial jobs that are being lost in the economic downturn will not be regained in the next several years, if ever. Lieber told The New York Times, “We’re not looking to recreate was here before. We’re acknowledging the changes and looking to diversity within financial services and outside financial services. It was only a few months ago that the City was predicting Wall Street would bounce back fast. The latest estimates are that 65,000 jobs will be lost as a result of the financial crisis; almost half will come from investment banking. The City has announced a $45 million dollar program to subsidize small offices as hatcheries for promising ideas for new businesses in finance or other fields.
Lower Manhattan Museum Closes
February 23 – The Sports Museum of America shut down ‘until further notice’ on Friday, February 20th, just 9 months after it opened. Museum founder Phillip Schwalb blamed $6 million in construction cost overruns that forced the museum to reduce it’s marketing budget. The museum also suspended payments last year on $57 million in tax-free Liberty bonds. Acquisition talks with Magic Johnson Enterprises to take over the museum fell apart. A spokesman for the museum said it will probably liquidate its assets and return memorabilia to the owners.
Memorial Architect Passes
February 23 – The architect of the September 11 Memorial museum, J. Max Bond Jr., has died at the age of 73 of cancer. Bond was one of the nation’s leading black architects. He was the associate architect for the memorial and principal designer of below-grade museum which is now under construction. His other works include the Studio Museum of Harlem and the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change in Atlanta.
Firms Hired for Water Street Study
February 26 – Two architectural firms have been hired by the Alliance for Downtown New York to study Water Street and implement a planning and design study. The hope is that the street will be redefined to include commercial, visitor and retail space. Elizabeth Berger, President of the Downtown Alliance told Real Estate Weekly, “This study will provide a blueprint for the future of Water Street.”
Anchor Tenant for 100 Church Street
February 26 – 100 Church Street now has an anchor tenant. Interactive Data Corp. signed a 15 year lease for 65,000 square feet according to GlobeSt.com. A spokesman said the new office space will accommodate more than 200 employees. Asking rents at 100 Church Street range from $48 to $53 per square foot.