The New York City Housing Authority said it will vacate its headquarters at 250 Broadway by 2019 and move all employees to its other Financial District office at 90 Church Street after agreeing to a new 20-year lease there.
The agency claims that the consolidation will save it $13 million per year between 2020 and 2024 and $26 million per year after that until the lease expires in 2039. NYCHA currently occupies 359,000 square feet at 250 Broadway, where it has been since the 1960s.
The move will reduce NYCHA’s overall footprint from 1.35 million square feet to 1.02 million square feet. The agency insists it will not reduce staff but rather use space more efficiently. Cushman & Wakefield’s Peter Hennessy, Robert Lowe, Christine Colley and Jared Thal advised NYCHA on the move. The property at 90 Church Street is owned by the U.S. Postal Service while the owner of 250 Broadway is Amtrust Realty, according to property records.
Parallel to its new lease at 90 Church, NYCHA also agreed to a new 20-year deal at Andrew Chung and Westbrook Partners’ 23-02 49th Avenue, where the agency currently occupies 440,000 square feet under a bargain lease expiring in 2020. The agency plans to apply for a property tax abatement for public benefit corporations that, if approved, could save it upwards of $2 million per year.
Meanwhile, NYCHA also plans to sell an industrial property at 23 Ash Street in Greenpoint, which it hopes will fetch more than $20 million. The site, currently home to a single-story warehouse, offers 112,000 buildable square feet.
NYCHA’s efforts to reduce its real estate expenses come as the agency faces a more uncertain funding environment. Earlier this year, the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development said it plans to slash spending on NYCHA projects by $75 million. “The hard-fought gains to improve service levels may slip backwards at one of the first casualties of cuts,” NYCHA chair Shola Olatoye said at the time.
NYCHA isn’t the only city agency making a move. Last month, The Real Deal reported that the Economic Development Corporation is in talks to sign a 220,000-square-foot lease at One Liberty Plaza.