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News Archive
November 17, 2000

- Condolences to Peter Kalikow and family on the death of his mother, Juliet Kalikow Levene. Contributions in her memory may be made to the Juiet Kalikow Levene memorial fund, New York Presbyterian Hospital.


- Douglas Durst won't be among the bidders for the Weiler/Arnow/Milstein site on the southeast corner of 42nd and Eighth.

Bid packages went out to 11 bidders, 9 from the 70 percent owners on the Weiler/Arnow/Seymour and Philip Milstein side, and 2 from the 30 percent Paul and son, Howard, Milstein side.

Tenant in waiting Cisco Systems is among those that asked for the packages which are available from the referee, Judah Gribetz at Richards & O'Neil, on recommendation from one of the two sides, each of which can choose ten bidders.

Bidders will have to make a minimum bid of 100 million, put up a $1 million deposit by noon on Tuesday, January 16. Bids will be opened at 3 p.m.. 48 hours later, the winning bidder will have to fork over $4 million more. Closing takes place 90 days from January 16.


- Want to be whisked around town for at least four hours in either a Mercedes or Hummer limo? Simply design a face for MrOfficeSpace that can become part of the logo for the commercial office space search site.

For an entry form, e-mail info@MrOfficeSpace.com or call (212) 868 1900 x 228 and leave your address for a snail mailed copy. Some entrants have already protested the sexist site name and designed MsOfficeSpace logos instead. So far, those entries have not been round filed, but we may have to ask for a recount later

- Zar Realty will be turning over the leasing of 90 Washington to a major brokerage in the next 30 days. Zar owns the ground lease on the 350,000 square-foot building formerly occupied by the Bank of New York. "I think 90 Washington will be a wonderful location and facility for some company," said Zar's Mark Stein. Once its rented, Stein says they will also let another firm redevelop and manage the property, and simply cash the checks. Since it acquired the lease in December 1998, Zar has considered a hotel conversion as well as the sale of its lease.


World Trade Center:

The Port Authority is culling bids. Charles Bagli reported in The New York Times that Silverstein Properties, Vornado, Boston Properties and Brookfield Properties are left standing. "Who in their right mind would bid for the World Trade Center?," quipped Larry Silverstein with a sly grin to his NYU Real Estate Institute Class, the day that appeared.

- Silverstein has teamed up with GMAC as his lender.

- Don't count Brookfield out in this. John Zucotti is pitching his best shots, having also worked with the Port Authority on the Olympia & York development across the West Side Highway and onward to his present post at its successor, Brookfield.

This week's New York Observer article by Andrew Rice says the company has two financial partners and is ready to refinance or sell ownership positions to raise money for the Twin Tower takeover.

Rockefeller Center:

Short list includes Equity Office and Vornado but most money is on Boston Properties walking away with Rockefeller Center. And now they're getting the money. On October 26 the company announced it sold 15 million shares of stock for a $556 million net through Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter. The proceeds will be used to fund a portion of "development pipeline" i.e. Times Square Tower if need be, and "to fund other land and property acquisitions..."


- Cisco has been courting Lawrence Ruben Co. and Vornado for around 300,000 square feet at 20 Times Square, the 1.3 million "dancing" square feet on the top of the Port Authority Bus Terminal being pitched by Cushman & Wakefield.

Cisco is also bidding on the Milstein/Arnow/Weiler parking lot at 42nd and Eighth Avenue.

The Cisco kids also have Manny Stern to wave at EDC and Empire State Development where they can afford to take 500,000 sf at 77 Hudson Street in Jersey. Ira Schuman of Studley is getting familiar with the PATH trains as they go back and forth.

BTW: Schuman's wife, Amy Paulin, was a schu-in for the New York State legislative seat being vacated by Audrey Hochberg. Congratulations!


- Trevor Davis, Aby Rosen and Michael Fuchs are planning a Rosewood hotel on their site at East 56 Street. The empty land is next to Heron Tower and was once going to be developed by Howard Ronson. It went to the Bernstein Bros., the Homestead Village before the RFR/Davis group picked it up last year with plans to make it an Envoy Club extended brand. Rosewood is very luxurious and just started a long and short term apartment program in Saudi Arabia in a gorgeous cone tower owned by the King Faisel Foundation. They also have a hotel, banquet facilities, and health club on the lower floors and a restaurant at the top of the 875-foot office building. It is close to being financed.

- CBS/Viacom wants to get rid of Black Rock through a 1031 exchange to beat the tax person. The seven lenders led by Equitable are dismissing the idea of giving up the much larger 1515 Broadway where Viacom has its headquarters, but the tax swap search continues and may include several other buildings. If they can't complete their scheme soon, watch for the building to become a straight sale through Insignia/ESG.

Secrets: Which developer through a snit fit because his deal partner got his picture in the paper and he didn't? His head shot is now on the editor's desk.

Secrets: Move over Donald J. Trump. Another developer is talking with Columbia University about a new building. Trump would like to cut a deal with Columbia to create a mini-campus on his commercial site at Trump Place, and build three residence halls on what would otherwise become apartment buildings. But a nearby owner has other plans in mind. Columbia is all ears.

- Condolences to Newmark's Jimmy Kuhn whose wonderful mom, "Sunnie," passed away in late October.


- Steven Spinola, president of REBNY, warned YMWREA's luncheon not to count out the unified bulk zoning proposal. It's off the table now, he said, but Planning Commissioner Joe Rose can recertify it yet again. Among its 532 pages, Spinola advised it could limit heights in Harlem so that new residential towers wouldn't have views of Central Park.

- It's time to give out the first fire safety notices to residential tenants for the inside of their apartment doors and post the warnings in the common areas. You can also mail the notices in January with the annual window guard notices. But beware, test "stuffings" have found the envelopes to be way too thick.

- A proposed law would restrict parades. Most ominous, if you've never had a parade on Fifth Avenue, you can never get a permit to hold one on the avenue.


© 2000 Lois Weiss

© 2000 Lois Weiss. All Rights Reserved.