The Real Deal New York

Oxford Properties reveals design for
St. John’s Terminal redevelopment

COOKFOX Architects draws up plans for glassy project
By Rich Bockmann | October 02, 2018 07:30AM

Oxford Properties Group released the first set of renderings for its redevelopment of the St. John’s Terminal into a glassy, 1.3 million-square-foot office building.

Designed by COOKFOX Architects, the firm behind the Durst Organization’s One Bryant Park and Vornado Realty Trust’s new High Line office development at 512 West 22nd Street, the redevelopment retains the first three stories of the former rail warehouse at 500 Washington Street and adds another nine floors of new construction on top.

Dean Shapiro, Oxford’s head of U.S. developments, said the company contemplated developing a taller building, but decided to go with a lower, squatter structure with larger floor plates in the area of 100,000 square feet.

“We think there’s a big demand – and generally an underserved demand – for well-located, extraordinary large floorplates,” he said.

Shapiro said the building will have lots of natural light by virtue of the amount of glass covering its façade and the high floor heights, which stretch as tall as 28 feet on the ground and second floors and a little taller than 16 feet across the new construction.

The design also features loads of outdoor space.

“In total there’s about three acres of it,” Shapiro said. “And a portion of it is publicly accessible.”

Oxford Properties Group, the real estate arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System, teamed up with the Canada Pension Plan in January to buy the southern portion of the St. John’s Terminal for $700 million from Westbrook Partners and Atlas Capital Group. The latter partners are retaining the north site, where they plan to develop 400,000 square feet of residential space.

This is Oxford’s first solo project in New York City, having co-developed Hudson Yards with the Related Companies.

Construction on the St. John’s Terminal is scheduled to kick off in the second quarter of next year, with Oxford expecting the building to be occupied by 2022.