The Real Deal New York

Minskoff chooses Jones Lang LaSalle, Robert K. Futterman to lease 51 Astor

By Katherine Clarke | November 15, 2011 06:38PM

Minskoff Equities has tapped commercial real estate brokerage Jones Lang LaSalle to market the office space at 51 Astor Place, the company’s forthcoming 400,000-square-foot property, which is currently under construction near Cooper Union, company founder Edward Minskoff told The Real Deal today. Robert K. Futterman & Associates will be marketing the property’s retail component, he said.

“Jones Lang LaSalle had good market coverage for the tenants out there that we feel strongly about — stronger than other firms,” Minskoff said. “They represent a lot of the tech tenants and financial tenants that we feel are our most promising [prospects.]”

As for Futterman, Minskoff said he had a long and successful relationship with the brokerage, making it the obvious choice for the retail at the East Village building, which is slated to be completed by 2013.

Asking rents for office space in the building will be $88 to $115 per square foot, Jones Lang LaSalle said. It was not immediately clear what the asking retail rents would be.

The Jones Lang LaSalle team handling 51 Astor Place will include Peter Riguardi, president of the company’s New York region; Mitchell Konsker and Paul Glickman, both vice chairmen, and Cynthia Wasserberger, managing director. The team launched a marketing campaign for the building a few weeks ago, Glickman said, and has begun reaching out to the brokerage and tenant community.

It’s an exciting project for the firm, he said, because “there’s nothing like this — a standalone building in a vibrant dynamic area. A 200,000 to 250,000-square foot tenant could not only brand the building, they could brand the neighborhood.”

While some brokers had expressed skepticism over the asking rents at the building, Minskoff said they are fair when compared to similar buildings in Midtown.

Glickman said building will be state-of-the-art building will be more modern than most New York City office inventory.

“The average vintage of office property in the city is dated,” he said. “When you compare on an apple to apple basis, there are tremendous economic benefits to moving to a building like this, [in terms of] operating costs.”

Jones Lang LaSalle is currently in discussions with a few prospective tenants, he said, but declined to comment further.

Though Robert K. Futterman & Associates did not respond to requests for comment, Minskoff told The Real Deal that he would not begin leasing the property’s retail component until the office space was 90 percent leased.

“It would be the tail wagging the dog,” he joked.

He said he is confident however that the retail will easily find tenants.

Though Minskoff Equities closed on a construction loan valued at between $165 and $200 million with Bank of America earlier this month, construction had begun previously. The building is slated to be ready for tenant fittings in the third quarter of 2012, with completion set for early 2013.

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