The Real Deal New York

Central Park Tower may be keeping nearby storefronts vacant

Landlords could be holding out for high rents once luxury tower is complete

March 04, 2016 09:31AM

The Nordstrom Tower at (inset Gail Brewer)

Rendering of Central Park Tower at 217 West 57th Street in Midtown (credit: Extell Development) (inset: Gail Brewer)

Over a dozen storefronts near the foot of Extell Development’s Central Park Tower, formerly known as Nordstrom Tower, have been vacant over two years.

A total of 13 retail properties on Broadway between Central Park and 53rd street are shuttered, with five more storefronts closed nearby. That includes the site of the former Famous Oyster Bar on the corner of 54th Street and Seventh Avenue, the former home of Pie Face at 53rd Street and Broadway, along with other closed shops, DNAinfo reported.

Landlords may be waiting out the construction of the planned 88-story 1.2 million-square-foot residential tower at 217 West 57th Street – along with other high-end residential and retail developments in the area – in hopes of earning higher rents and choosing a tenant better suited to the future character of the neighborhood.

The tower – which contain 233 luxury condo units – is under construction and scheduled for completion in 2019. It will be home to the city’s first Nordstrom Department store.

Extell assembled the site in 2005. The developer hopes for a sellout of as much as $4.4 billion, according to a regulatory filing. That would be a world record.

“Forfeiting income from commercial real estate in order to hold out is very detrimental to the neighborhood,” Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer told DNAinfo. “It’s a deterrent to pedestrian traffic on that side of the street, and it’s a killer for the businesses that remain there.” [DNAinfo]Ariel Stulberg

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