The Real Deal New York

Developers may cut back parking in future NYC malls, ICSC panelists say

By Adam Pincus | December 06, 2011 10:57AM

Developers have built too much parking garage space in some of the city’s newest mall developments including the Gateway Center at the Bronx Terminal Market, according to real estate professionals speaking at a panel this morning at the International Council of Shopping Centers New York convention.

Parking floors are sitting mostly empty in some projects even as the overall mall might do well, the retail owners and brokers said.

“What that really tells you going forward is that there is a case to be made that you don’t necessarily need as much parking if it is just urban vertical retail,” said Larry Rose, a principal with advisory firm RK Realty Advisors.

Rose spoke on an eight-person panel titled “Urban Retail: The Vertical Integration of Retail,” at ICSC’s New York National Conference & Deal Making, taking place this week yesterday and today in Midtown. Ken Narva, managing partner of Street Works, moderated the panel.

Developers are often pressed by local residents and elected officials to provide a large amount of parking so that the streets do no becoming flooded by cars owned by non-resident shoppers.

Another panelist, Patrick Smith, vice president of real estate for BJ’s Wholesale Club, said the developer of Bronx Terminal Market spent about $35,000 per parking space, even as they are rarely used. He did not identity the developer, which was the Related Companies.

Panelist Dennis Bachman, senior real estate representative for Wakefern Food, said in some Pathmark stores, parking spaces were leased out to garage operators because shoppers were not using them.

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