Residential development in Long Island City appears to be helping to drive demand for office and retail space in the neighborhood.
In the past decade, some 11,000 condo units and rental apartments have been built in the Queens neighborhood, with another 22,000 apartments planned or being built, the Wall Street Journal reported. The newspaper points to the fact that Tishman Speyer and Qatari Diar (a subsidiary of Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund) have pre-leased a majority of their planned 1.1-million-square-foot office project as a sign of mounting demand. The developers pre-leased more than 800,000 square feet in their project, which features two 27-story office towers and a four-story retail building at Queens Plaza South and Jackson Avenue. Tenants include WeWork and Macy’s.
“We are in the infant stages of commercial development in Long Island City,” Evan Daniel, executive vice president of the Commercial and Investment Property Group for ModernSpaces, told the newspaper. “You have to have the people first to have the commercial and retail survive.
The neighborhood currently has 13 million square feet of office space, according to Cushman & Wakefield. Asking rents have been on the rise, jumping from $35 per square foot last year to $38 per square foot in 2016. The vacancy rate also fell from 9.9 percent in the second quarter of 2015 to 7.7 percent during the same time this year. [WSJ] — Kathryn Brenzel