SL Green Realty Corp. is in the midst of planning a new downtown building near the World Trade Center.

The real estate investment trust owns the small 183 Broadway, which it bought last year for $28.5 million, and the adjacent 187 Broadway, which it bought in 2015 along with the 70,000-square-foot 5-7 Dey St. for $63.7 million. The Dey building sits behind the other two to the west. But the REIT could really use a larger end result.

Coincidently — or perhaps prompted by a query from SL Green — the MTA, which owns the adjacent 189 Broadway on the southwest corner of Dey Street, now has a request for proposals to buy the “surplus development rights and related easement interests” over that subway entrance.

The RFP says the MTA uses 6,565 square feet leaving about 62,750 square feet to be sold. Those proposals are due on July 12, and we can guess who will make the best offer.

The C5-5 zoning district allows SL Green to create a tower of up to 15 FAR (floor area ratio) or roughly 200,000 square feet, if it gets those air rights.

Two other small office buildings at 179 and 181 Broadway have Pret A Manger and Aldo shoes as retail tenants. Yes, SL Green has approached the longtime owners, but Richard Rubel, who manages the family portfolio, said they like owning the properties and between capital gains taxes and depreciation recapture, haven’t received a “sweet enough” offer that they can’t refuse.

SL Green and Jeff Sutton previously developed a dorm for Pace University right across Broadway and leased up the valuable retail in the base before selling it to LeFrak.
It could not be determined if a similar project is planned for this location or if SL Green will instead develop offices, a rental apartment building using housing bonuses, or a hotel.

In mid-June, SL Green obtained permits to put up scaffold to begin demolishing the other three buildings.

No comment was forthcoming from either SL Green or the MTA. Stay tuned.