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Cushman & Wakefield is pleased to announce the sale of a landmarked building at 126-128 East 13th Street and a mixed-use building at 123 East 12th Street in a transaction valued at $21,500,000. Cushman & Wakefield’s James Nelson and Matthew Nickerson were engaged by Ultimate Realty to handle the transaction.

This is the second transaction for Ultimate Realty that Cushman & Wakefield handled within the last year. James Nelson sold 28 East 14th Street for $29,500,000 or $2,484 per square foot in 2015, which was one of the most notable sales ever completed in the neighborhood. Ultimate Realty also recently picked up a trio of Lower East Side buildings in partnership with Caspi Development for $24,500,000.

126-128 East 13th Street, located between Third and Fourth Avenues, is a NNN leased, three-story, Beaux-Arts style loft building that contains approximately 15,600 square feet and sits on a 49.67’ x 103.25’ lot. It is currently leased by Peridance, a dance studio, until March 2028 with a five year option. The lease is guaranteed by Capezio Ballet Makers Inc. The building is the former Van Tassell & Kearney auction house and studio of renowned painter and printmaker, Frank Stella. The building features 15’ ceiling heights on the ground floor, 12’ ceiling heights on the lower level and soaring 30’ cathedral ceilings on the second floor magnified by multiple skylights.

123 East 12th Street, also located between Third and Fourth Avenues, is a newly renovated, three-story mixed-use building that contains approximately 4,804 square feet and sits on a 19.75’ x 103.25’ lot. The property consists of a ground floor retail unit with a lower level and a three-bedroom duplex apartment featuring a private rooftop above. The retail unit is leased to a Jiu Jitsu instruction school until August 2023. The duplex unit was gut renovated in 2012 and features 14’ ceiling heights, an eat-in chef’s kitchen, stone counter tops, and a private patio.

Both properties are located within two blocks from Union Square and enjoy convenient access via the 4, 5, 6, N, Q, R and L train lines at the 14th Street – Union Square station.

Click here for press release.

Neighborhoods: East Village/ Agents: James Nelson

January 27, 2016 | Commercial Observer | Bob Knakal

Mayor Bill de Blasio must be beside himself now that the 421a tax benefits program has expired. Labor’s unwillingness to agree to reasonable wages for construction workers has dealt a crushing blow to the mayor’s objective of creating/preserving 200,000 units of affordable housing over the next 10 years. “Preserving” is always a necessary hedge word when politicians employ it, as it is impossible to accurately determine how many units get preserved. This provides elected officials with wiggle room when examining actual results versus numerical projections. However, new construction is a critical component of any initiative to increase affordable housing in the city. Without the 421a program—or some kind of equivalent—even a fraction of this target is outlandishly optimistic.

There is no doubt that New York City is in dire need of more affordable housing for residents across a broad range of earning levels. Affordable housing is typically thought of as housing for the poorest among us; however, the working class is an equally important segment of society that requires housing within the city’s boundaries...

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Agents: Robert Knakal

The first Cushman & Wakefield Speaker Series event successfully launched last night. It was the first of the firm's new in-house speaker series designed to educate and empower employees with tools that can enhance their success and productivity.

Industry Cushman & Wakefield veterans, Ken McCarthy, Gus Field, Joanne Podell, Steve Kohn, and Bob Knakal, presented an overview of the New York City Market. It was a condensed version of our Year-End Press Conference held earlier this month.


Agents: Robert Knakal

A retail condominium at 95 Chambers Street (also known as 77 Reade Street), located between Broadway and Church Street in Manhattan’s TriBeCa neighborhood, was sold in an all-cash transaction valued at $17,750,000.

The property consists of a ground floor and basement space totaling approximately 12,638 square feet and features high 15’ ceilings. The unit sits within a newly renovated building that runs block through from Chambers Street to Reade Street. The building boasts 79’ and 49’ of frontage, respectively. The unit is currently occupied by European Wax Center and Reade Street Prep. The seller was Rob Kaliner in partnership with HP Investors of San Diego. The buyer was HUBB NYC.

The unit is located less than two blocks from the Chambers Street and City Hall subway stations, providing access to multiple subway lines.  It is also four blocks from the World Trade Center and WTC transportation hub.  Neighboring tenants include Dunkin’ Donuts, Starbucks, LePain Quotidien, GNC, Smyth Hotel, and Sophie’s.

“At the time we purchased the property, there was significant leasing risks due to the extensive construction along Chambers Street, but our long term vision paid off nicely,” said Kaliner.

“The in-place income along with the lease up value presented an excellent opportunity for the buyer. We’re glad we had the privilege to satisfy the needs of both the seller and buyer,” said Cushman & Wakefield’s James Nelson who exclusively handled this transaction with Will Suarez and David Shalom.


Click here for press release.

Neighborhoods: TriBeCa/ Agents: Guillermo Suarez, James Nelson

Bob Knakal and Cushman & Wakefield were honored at The Greater New York Chapter of the Institute of Real Estate Management Annual Awards Dinner.

Nicholas Stolatis, CPM, presented Bob Knakal, Chairman, New York Investment Sales with the Real Estate Person of the Year award.

John Santora accepted the Accredited Management Organization of the Year award on behalf of Cushman & Wakefield.

Other honorees included Diana Bosnjak, Vice President – RY Management Co., Inc, who received the Certified Property Manager of the Year Award and Andrew Rosenwach from Rosenwach Tank Company, who received the Industry Partner of the Year Award.

The event was held on January 14, 2016 at 230 Fifth in Manhattan.

Agents: Robert Knakal

The Real Deal | January 13, 2016 | Rey Mashayeki

Cushman & Wakefield executives delivered a mixed outlook Tuesday on the city’s commercial real estate market in 2016, as continued macroeconomic strength is expected to drive market fundamentals but major questions persist over the fate of the current cycle.

The commercial brokerage giant noted positive market trends ranging from continued job growth – with 46,000 jobs added in the city in October and November alone, according to principal economist Ken McCarthy – to office asking rents that have hit all-time highs in the Downtown and Midtown South submarkets.

A resurgent financial services sector has helped drive that momentum, with the industry overtaking the TAMI sector to account for 29 percent of all new office leases in 2015, Cushman said...

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Agents: Robert Knakal

Yesterday morning, a panel of Cushman & Wakefield experts  presented on the state of the New York City real estate market. At the event, fourth quarter statistics were released for the Manhattan commercial real estate market that show year-end new leasing activity totaled 28.2 million square feet (msf), representing the third highest total in the past decade.

The strong leasing volume lowered the overall Manhattan vacancy rate to 8.5 percent, the lowest it has been since year-end 2008, when the vacancy rate was 8.1 percent.

“2015 was a very strong year, and we are optimistic that the combination of a healthy TAMI sector coupled with stronger growth in financial services will continue to drive the market forward in 2016,” said Ron Lo Russo, President, New York Tri-State Region.

“New York City has experienced extraordinary job growth over the past five years. We expect that the City will continue to act as a magnet to the young professional millennial worker that companies are seeking to hire,” said Ken McCarthy, Principal Economist, Applied Research Lead.

Manhattan’s three major markets closed the year with vacancy rates in the single digits. Midtown South, with a 6.2 percent vacancy rate, was surpassed as the tightest Central Business District in the nation by San Francisco, which had a vacancy rate of 5.9 percent. The Midtown market closed the year with a vacancy rate of 8.8 percent, a decrease of 1.0 percent year-over-year and the Downtown market closed at 9.4 percent, a decrease of 0.3 percent year-over-year.

At year-end, the overall average asking rent in Manhattan increased 5.7 percent year-over-year to $71.58 per square foot (psf), from $67.70 psf and the Manhattan class-A average asking rent increased 4.2 percent to $76.76 psf.

Overall absorption for the year was positive in all three major markets, totaling nearly 4.5 msf. The Midtown market represented 75.0 percent of Manhattan’s positive absorption, with 3.3 msf.

“Fundamentals and activity at the outset of 2016 are strong,” said Gus Field, Vice Chairman. “Due to pending variables, we see either moderate growth or a moderate slowdown this year.”

Mr. Field, who presented the Manhattan office market at the firm’s year-end press conference, pointed to changing interest rates and the upcoming election as some of the variables that will affect the growth of the market this year.

The TAMI (Technology, Advertising, Media & Information) sector has been the main reason for the growth in office leasing following the recession, but financial services has become an important factor in the continued growth in the market. From 2011 to 2014, the TAMI sector accounted for 28 percent of the market share of Manhattan new office leasing, with financial services accounting for 25 percent. This year there has been a shift. For year-end 2015, the financial services sector accounted for 29 percent of the market share and the TAMI sector accounted for 27 percent.

For the retail market, the evolution of technology is playing a larger role in retailers’ real estate decisions.

“Retailers who embrace the omni-channel experience – the integration of e-commerce, bricks-and-mortar, technology, and mobile and social apps – are likely to do so in urban flagship locations,” said Joanne Podell, Vice Chairman. “This seamless integration of cutting-edge technology makes them well-suited to promote in-store product, create memorable experiences, and pull big data to better understand their customer.”

Manhattan average retail ground floor asking rents increased in five of the 11 retail corridors, with Flatiron seeing an increase of 6.9 percent, Meatpacking an increase of 5.2 percent, SoHo an increase of 4.6 percent and Lower Manhattan an increase of 4.2 percent. The availability rate increased in eight of the corridors, with Herald Square/West 34th Street closing the year up 8.3 percent and Fifth Avenue (42nd to 49th Streets) up 6.2 percent.

In the equity and debt market, Steve Kohn, President, Equity, Debt & Structured Finance, noted that despite global economic noise creating volatility in fixed income markets, CMBS persevered in 2015.

Mr. Kohn stated that there has been significant volatility in the world affecting spreads in debt. Looking forward, he questioned if this is a period of “short term volatility or a longer term upward trend in capital costs?”

Robert Knakal, Chairman, New York Investment Sales, stated at the mid-year point that the sales market was surging toward an all-time dollar volume record. That, in fact, was the case. By year-end there was a total of $74.5 billion of completed transactions.

The total number of properties sold decreased year-over-year, with 5,089 properties sold in 2015 compared with 5,532 properties sold in 2014.

Agents: Robert Knakal

Cushman & Wakefield has been retained on an exclusive basis to sell the Mann Portfolio, consisting of five properties in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood. The asking price is $21,500,000.

The properties are located at 257 Quincy Street, 570 Jefferson Avenue, 308 Stuyvesant Avenue, 788 Madison Street and 790 Madison Street. The five walk-up apartment buildings combine for approximately 45,462 square feet and 62 residential units. Of the 62, 31 are rent stabilized, 18 are free market, and 13 will be delivered vacant upon sale, allowing for immediate upside in gross income. The combined unit mix consists of eight studio, eight one-bedroom, 35 two-bedroom, eight three-bedroom, and three four-bedroom apartments.

257 Quincy Street, located between Nostrand and Marcy Avenues, contains approximately 17,650 square feet on a 50’ x 100’ lot and consists of 21 units. 570 Jefferson Avenue, located between Lewis and Stuyvesant Avenues, contains approximately 7,364 square feet on a 25' x 80' lot and consists of nine units. 308 Stuyvesant Avenue, located between Hancock and Halsey Streets, contains approximately 8,320 square feet on a 26’ x 100’ lot and consists of 16 units. 788 Madison Street and 790 Madison Street, located between Ralph and Patchen Avenues, are two neighboring buildings that each consist of 8 units, contain approximately 6,064 square feet and sit on 27.5’ x 100’ lots. One of the two buildings will be delivered entirely vacant.

In an area with both established and up-and-coming attractions, featuring global cuisine, Off-Broadway shows, and a considerable number of nightlife options, this portfolio presents a rare opportunity to make an overnight footprint one of Brooklyn’s most dynamic and evolving neighborhoods. The properties are conveniently situated in and around Stuyvesant Heights Historic District which provides access to Manhattan via the A, C, G, J and Z subway lines.

“This is one of the best located portfolios we have seen come to market in Central Brooklyn. This opportunity offers a unique balance of scale, architectural significance, strong in-place income and legitimate upside,” said Cushman & Wakefield’s Michael Amirkhanian who is exclusively marketing this portfolio. 

Click here for listing details

Neighborhoods: Bedford Stuyvesant/ Agents: Michael Amirkhanian

Commercial Observer | January 7, 2015 | Bob Knakal

As 2016 begins, trying to figure out how the investment sales market will perform is no easy task. Within the next week or so, we will be making our forecast for the year and we will look at several metrics to craft our projections.

An important component of the data for review will be the 2015 year-end sales statistics. While the figures are not yet compiled, it is a safe bet that last year will set a new all-time record for dollar volume of investment sales. The previous peak was $62.2 billion in 2007 and last year will end up significantly above that threshold. The number of properties sold will likely not eclipse 2014’s all-time record but will be extremely strong, likely recording a second-strongest-year-ever total...

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Agents: Robert Knakal