THE OTHER WALL STREET OCCUPIERS
Protesters aren’t the only new thing occupying Wall Street. Downtown retail, particularly in FiDi, keeps getting hotter, says Winick Realty’s Darrell Rubens, whom we snapped with colleague Annie Shinn on the roof of 75 Wall St. Tenants are finally realizing the advantages of the market, particularly the affordable space available and the proximity to workers, residents, and tourists. Four years ago, retailers like TJ Maxx—which recently took 32k SF at 14 Wall St (Darrell repped landlord Capstone Equities, while Ripco repped the tenant)—wouldn’t even look at the market. Now it’s the first national brand retailer to move into the heart of FiDi, opening Nov. 17. Now everyone (including name restaurants, mid- and upper-market fashion retailers, supermarkets, museums, and schools) is sniffing around.
A sign of things to come. Darrell has leases out on four other spaces, as well as two prospective deals at 75 Wall, where he and Annie are currently marketing 2,200 SF of retail beneath the Andaz Hotel. Both a push from the Downtown Alliance and the presence of newer retailers—including Milk Street Cafe (27k SF for 20 years) and Duane Reade (23k SF for 20 years) at 40 Wall—are helping brokers move other dark space in the neighborhood. Landlords are reaping the benefits, too, seeing rents jump as much as 50% in some areas since Lehman’s collapse. Fulton Street was at $80/SF three years ago with at least 15 vacancies; now there are only three or four spaces available, asking $150/SF, Darrell says.
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