September 16th - September 19th, 2008
Foundation Work Slows
September 15- The developer of 50 West Street, Time Equities, told Crain’s New York Business, the company will take 12 months to work on the foundation at a leisurely pace because his firm has not yet locked in a construction loan for the rest of the project. Crain’s says this is the latest developer to announce that they’re waiting for market conditions to ease up enough for money to flow to projects.
56 Leonard Unveiled
September 15 – The Swiss architects of 56 Leonard Street unveiled their design this week and the building is being compared to a Rubik’s cube. It’s a translucent glass skyscraper featuring cantilevered terraces with each level staggered progressively arranged at varying angles to create unique floor plans for the 145 apartments. The building will have an expansive 18 foot high black granite lobby. The 57 story tower is slated to open in 2010.
South Street Plan Criticized
September 15 – NYC Councilman Alan Gerson is criticizing the plan to transform the South Street Seaport. He told The New York Sun the 42 story hotel and apartment tower is too tall and the plan for the site lacks sufficient public space. The developer, General Growth Properties said the plan includes a community center and it is considering also building a school.
Merrill Lynch Sale to Impact on World Financial Center
September 16 – There’s speculation that the sale of Merrill Lynch to Bank of America could have an impact on the 4.2 million square feet the company currently occupies at the World Financial Center. A report in The New York Sun says BOFA officials expect to cut $7 billion in costs through layoffs and a reduction in leased office space. And the uncertain future of AIG, American International Group, could impact the office space it leases in Lower Manhattan. AIG currently occupies 3 million square feet of office space, most of it at 70 Pine Street and 80 Maiden Lane.
Financial Services Crisis Could Affect Construction
September 17 – Several published reports say the ongoing financial services crisis could affect the construction of several projects including the 9-11 Memorial. But the Port Authority put those reports to rest saying the rebuilding of Ground Zero will move ahead. Chairman Anthony Coscia told The New York Post, “New York City has seen cycles before. This is an agency that has been building for 80-plus years through good times and not good times.”
Malloy Supports Effort to Dismantle LMDC
September 18 – Edward J. Malloy, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council, told Real Estate Weekly, that he supports Mayor Bloomberg in his effort to dismantle the LMDC. “The LMDC has served its purpose and its member should be commended for taking the project a long way. Now it’s time to move from the development stage to the construction stage,” Malloy said. He added the oversight function of the Deutsche Bank site should be turned over the Command Center to complete the deconstruction/demolition by summer of 2009.
Silverstein Confident in Real Estate Market
September 18 – In an article in BusinessWeek, Larry Silverstein said he’s confident there will be demand for the more than 6 million square feet of office space he’s set to build at the WTC site, despite the turmoil in the financial markets. “The naysayers, then and now, don’t seem to understand that we are building in anticipation of future demand, not based on today’s market. Just as NYC’s economy recovered from 9/11, it will recover from recent events.”
Tribute Center Opens New Exhibit
September 18 – Former Mayor Rudolph Guiliani, speaking at the opening of a new exhibit at the Tribute Center said business owners who returned to Lower Manhattan after 9/11 are heroes. “I think they’re the ones who helped rebuild this place from the bottom up.”
Mayors Calls for Federal Increase of Safety Standards
September 19 – In a letter to President Bush, Mayor Bloomberg called on the federal government to increase safety standards for construction cranes. 9 people have bee killed in crane accidents since March; federal officials said they will soon be out with their proposed changes in crane safety.