Governor Hochul Celebrates Groundbreaking for the People’s Theatre: Centro Cultural Inmigrante in Inwood

Governor Kathy Hochul today celebrated the groundbreaking for the People’s Theatre: Centro Cultural Inmigrante, a new 19,000-square foot performing arts center in Manhattan’s Inwood neighborhood that will also serve as the home for the theater nonprofit organization The People’s Theatre Project. The center, which will be located at 407 West 206th Street, will amplify the voices of New York City’s diverse immigrant communities and cultivate work by local artists and arts organizations.

“As the largest Latine theater in New York City and the city’s first Dominican-managed cultural institution, the People’s Theatre Project’s new home will be more than a performing arts center – it will be a tribute to the diverse artists, cultures, and communities that define our great state,” Governor Hochul said. “New York has always cherished its diversity and inclusiveness, and through our support for timeless institutions like this one, we always will. I will continue working with my partners in government and the arts community to find ways to celebrate the history, creativity, and culture of all New Yorkers, and I look forward to cutting the ribbon on this beautiful space in a few short years.”

Founding Executive Artistic Director of the People’s Theatre Project Mino Lora said, “The People’s Theatre: Centro Cultural Inmigrante will be an exemplary space, developing and producing theater that is more equitable and representative of immigrants, Latine artists and our communities of color. For the last 15 years, we have been committed to uplifting the voices of marginalized communities, and The People’s Theatre will connect, inspire, and catalyze generations of immigrants and their allies. We are extremely grateful for the catalytic support from Governor Hochul, EDC, DCLA, The Miranda Family Fund and New York-Presbyterian during this exciting moment for our neighborhood and our organization, with an opportunity to build a community-rooted and anti-oppressive cultural institution in New York City from the ground up.”

Luis A. Miranda Jr. and Lin-Manuel Miranda of the Miranda Family Fund said, “It is with tremendous pride that we break ground today on The People’s Theatre: Centre Cultural Inmigrante, here in Northern Manhattan. It is no secret our family loves this neighborhood. This is because Northern Manhattan is a vibrant, hardworking community of diverse creators, makers, movers and shakers – all looking to share their stories. Theater is about community, offering a space where art, culture, and identity converge. Our uptown neighborhood is more than ready to have a permanent home for its theater practitioners, to nurture and showcase countless generations of storytellers and stories to come.”



Beyond Class A: Life Sciences, A Winning Investment Strategy In New York City’s Office Market

On the surface, the news from the New York City office sector may look grim: vacancy rates nearing 20%, occupancy rates stubbornly stuck at around 50%, interest rates rising, values dropping, anemic investment sales activity and owners giving keys back to lenders.

Fortunately, that isn’t the full story. As I discussed in my previous Forbes article, landlords are holding onto Class A, well- tenanted buildings even as they let go of others. Additionally, four other strategies show long-term health for the office sector:

  1. Repriced assets are attracting investors to properties with current weak fundamentals but strong potential.
  2. Entities such as Hyundai, NYU and Enchanté are snapping up buildings for their own use.
  3. New York City’s housing crisis has prompted developers to consider office to residential conversions, which I explored in a March 2023 Forbes article.
  4. Also, while office finds its footing, there is another workplace and innovation asset class that continues to see strong demand citywide: life sciences. In fact, this demand is leading a number of owners to explore activity in this appreciating sector.

West End Labs signs first tenant in Graviton Bioscience for new 400K-square-foot life sciences building

West End Labs, Elevate Research Properties’ just-completed life sciences center at 125 West End Ave., signed its first tenant. Graviton Bioscience, a developer of therapeutics to treat autoimmune diseases, leased 30,000 square feet in the new, 400,000 square-foot building.

Graviton will use the space as its new research and office headquarters. The asking rent was $125 per square foot.

Elevate president Matthew Weir said, “We are excited to announce the opening of New York City’s premier lab building and we are thrilled to welcome Graviton Bioscience as our first tenant partner. This combination of milestones has created great momentum for the project and the New York life sciences market as a whole.”

Governor Hochul Announces Start of Construction on $416 Million, 698-unit Mixed-Income Development in Upper Manhattan

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that development of two interconnected, mixed-income, mixed-use residential buildings with nearly 700 apartments, including 281 affordable units, is underway in the Inwood neighborhood of Upper Manhattan. The $416 million Inwood development will feature all-electric heating and cooling and other sustainable features that advance the State’s climate goals and offer free broadband internet to residents.

“My administration is fighting to ensure every New Yorker has the opportunity to live in a safe, secure, sustainable home in a thriving community like Inwood,” Governor Hochul said. “This development will not only create new homes but will also provide essential services and amenities that increase quality of life and boost the economy for the entire community.”

The development announced today is part of Governor Hochul’s $25 billion comprehensive Housing Plan that will create or preserve 100,000 affordable homes across New York, including 10,000 with supportive services for vulnerable populations, plus the electrification of an additional 50,000 homes.

Together, the buildings at 405 and 407 West 206th Street will have a mix of studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments. Forty percent of the apartments are reserved for residents earning at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income. An additional ten percent of apartments will have rents restricted up to 30 percent of 120 percent of AMI and be subject to NYC Rent Stabilization Guidelines. The remaining units will be market rate apartments.

The project is pursuing a LEED BD+C Silver certification and meets the new sustainability standards established by New York State Homes and Community Renewal in 2022 which promote healthier living environments and highly efficient buildings, and support the goals set by the New York State Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. In addition to advancing the State’s climate goals, 405 and 407 West 206th Street will offer free broadband, building on the Governor’s ConnectALL initiative, which has made historic investments to deliver high-speed internet in underserved communities and close the digital divide for lower-income New Yorkers.

Shared amenities for all residents will include landscaped courtyards, an attended lobby, multiple roof decks, a fitness center, co-working spaces, lounge spaces and music rehearsal rooms. The complex will house a supermarket under the city of New York’s Food Retail Expansion to Support Health Program (FRESH) program, neighborhood retail space, parking, and an immigrant-centered performing arts center to be owned and operated by the People’s Theatre Project.

Financing for the affordable portion of the new development includes nearly $70 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credit equity and nearly $82 million in tax-exempt bonds and almost $182 million in taxable bonds provided by New York State Homes and Community Renewal. In addition, the project applicant is applying for an estimated $39.5 million in tax credits following work completed to investigate and clean up contamination under Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) oversight as part of the state’s successful Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP).

The bonds were purchased by Wells Fargo Municipal Capital Strategies and Wells Fargo Bank. Credit enhancement will be provided by Fannie Mae at conversion. The Low-Income Housing Tax Credits were purchased by the Urban Investment Group within Goldman Sachs Asset Management. Additional sources include nearly $87 million equity from the joint venture and the Urban Investment Group.

The development is a joint venture among LMXD affiliate of L+M Development Partners, MSquared and Taconic Partners. The Community League of the Heights (CLOTH) is the community sponsor. The buildings were designed by Beyer Blinder Belle Architects

Climbing gym VITAL signs lease at Essex Crossing in Lower East Side

Essex Crossing, the thriving mixed-use complex near the foot of the Williamsburg Bridge, has apartments, offices, shops, restaurants, a movie theater and a photography museum. Soon it will have a climbing gym, too.

VITAL, which has three locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn, signed a lease for 45,000 square feet at 182 Broome St.

It will move into the vacant space in spring 2024 and offer instruction in climbing, bouldering, yoga, cycling and weightlifting.

New research facility at Lou Gehrig’s birthplace to be named Iron Horse Labs

New York Yankees legend Lou Gehrig, the “Iron Horse” who played in a then-record 2,130 consecutive games from 1925-1939, was born at 309 E. 94th St.

So it’s altogether appropriate that developer Elevate Research Properties, a subsidiary of Taconic Partners, plans to name a cutting-edge research facility it’s building at the site Iron Horse Labs. It’s a tribute to the great first baseman who died in 1941 at age 37, a victim of the paralyzing condition known as ALS, which is commonly called “Lou Gehrig’s Disease.”

“His story can inspire life-saving research,” said Elevate president Matthew Weir.

The 200,000 square-foot project, reported here for the first time, will be leased as a potential “flagship opportunity to medical and scientific research organizations, life-science laboratories and academic medical institutions,” Weir said.

Elevate and its partners, Nuveen Real Estate and Flatiron Equities, bought the land for $70 million, part of their total $350 million development cost. The new building will have features such as a unique, double-height specialty research space, sophisticated energy-efficient systems and several outdoor terraces.

An exterior plaque at the site marking Gehrig’s birthplace, installed by the Yankees in the 1990s, is to be restored and re-installed in the lobby.

A Sand Hill Road in the Sky: Inside Venture Capital’s New Power Building

I really should show you the roof,” said Alexa von Tobel, perched on a white bouclé chair in the gleaming Manhattan offices of her venture firm, Inspired Capital. “Let’s pop up there.”

We whisked out of the ninth-floor conference room, past a large portrait by Alex Katz, the Brooklyn-born artist currently receiving a Guggenheim Museum retrospective, to ascend to the top of 817 Broadway. The 125-year-old Beaux Arts tower just below Union Square has turned into an unexpected locus for New York City’s tech investors and founders, not to mention their spouses, siblings, college friends and interior designers.

“They did a beautiful job,” said von Tobel, exiting from an elevator onto a finished roof deck with tables and benches encircled by the space’s distinguishing feature: a crown of brick arches. “The views are insane. At night, the city is glowing. And when it’s not freezing, you can work from up here.” You can throw parties up here, too, as Inspired has done with fellow building tenant Union Square Ventures.

While big tech has claimed an ever-larger slice of the Big Apple over the last several years—Netflix has a new studio in Brooklyn, Meta Platforms has spread to the stately Farley Building near Penn Station and Google has expanded to fresh confines at Pier 57—the city’s venture capitalists have carved up a smaller footprint centered around a single area, roughly a mile south and a mile west of Union Square. And as VCs have sought square footage here, 817 Broadway has become a blinking-red beacon.

National Real Estate Advisors and Taconic Partners Celebrate Topping Out of 312 West 43rd Street

New York, N.Y. (December 12, 2022) – National Real Estate Advisors, LLC (National) and Taconic Partners, along with Triton Construction and hundreds of women and men from the building trades, celebrate 312 West 43rd Street’s topping out, the ceremonial marking of completing vertical construction.

The 367,000-square-foot, mixed-use development project is located at the vibrant confluence of Times Square and Hell’s Kitchen. Designed by Handel Architects, the 33-story building will contain 330 rental apartments accessed via a distinct 43rd Street entrance, and approximately 42,000 square feet of prominently positioned retail spread across two floors on West 42nd and West 43rd Streets.

“Our experience in this market, paired with the expertise and vision of the Taconic team, should create one of the highest-quality living options in the burgeoning Midtown West,” stated Jeffrey Kanne, president and CEO of National. “We are proud of the hundreds of jobs this project is creating within the community and would like to thank our experienced and steadfast labor partners for their dedication.”

The property will be further enhanced with over 28,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor wellness-centric tenant amenities, including a rooftop pool and landscaped outdoor space accessible by residents across multiple floors. The building has also been uniquely engineered to provide filtered outside air to all residences and common spaces. Situated amidst an abundance of restaurants, entertainment and retail offerings, the site is adjacent to 12 subway lines with direct access to Grand Central Terminal, Hudson Yards, The Port Authority and Penn Station.

“312 West 43rd Street was thoughtfully designed to bring its residents an unparalleled combination of bespoke homes, contemporary amenities and convenient proximity to commercial office centers and mass transportation hubs,” said Colleen Wenke, president and chief operating officer of Taconic Partners. “We’re excited to celebrate this topping out milestone alongside our partners, and are now one step closer to bringing one of the city’s most celebrated neighborhoods its next iconic residential and retail destination.”

Taconic and National leased the ground rights for 99 years from the respected 1199SIEU Health Care Workers Union for the redevelopment of the site, which is expected to be completed in Fall 2024.

Taconic Partners secures 151K-square-foot industrial lease in Morristown

When Taconic Partners launched its industrial investment strategy, it chose New Jersey to do so. Now, the company from neighboring New York has secured a lease for 151,000 square feet at that Morristown property, marking the first milestone, it said, along that course.

Allmodes Transport Inc. signed a 151,000-square-foot lease renewal at 1 Cory Road, Taconic announced Nov. 8 — the company’s first industrial investment.

Situated on 17 acres, Taconic and Nuveen Real Estate acquired the 297,000-square-foot warehouse facility for $55 million last December.

“Recently, we launched a new initiative to begin investment in well-located, superior, industrial assets and 1 Cory Road really fit our investment thesis,” Vice President David Milch said in a statement.

The company reported Morristown’s vacancy rate at 0.6%.

“This transaction confirms our thesis that strategically located, high quality assets will continue to see high occupancy with healthy rent growth,” he continued.

For the third quarter of 2022, JLL’s New Jersey Industrial Insight Report found asking rents were up 34% over the past year for an average total asking price of $15.56 per square foot. Even still, the pursuit of the state’s logistics and last-mile sites persists: for the same period, Colliers reported new and renewed leases in N.J. adding up to nearly 7.5 million square feet.

In Morristown, 1 Cory Road is 97% leased with 8,000 square feet of warehouse space and 2 acres of car or trailer parking available.

Altogether, the property features 6.5 acres of parking — necessary for transportation and shipping tenants. It also hosts a 450-kilowatt solar panel system that Taconic said provides clean energy to tenants and, helps to satisfy the company’s ongoing commitment to sustainability.