Amazon’s doorbell-camera company raises surveillance concerns, Hudson’s Bay sells Lord & Taylor: Daily Digest

A daily roundup of real estate news, deals and more for August 28, 2019

TRD New York /
Aug.August 28, 2019 05:14 PM

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Zillow has moved to dismiss a shareholder derivative suit. The real estate data conglomerate has disputed claims in a lawsuit brought by shareholders who say its senior staff and board of directors made misleading statements while the company was embroiled in a kickback scandal. [Inman]


Hudson’s Bay sells Lord & Taylor for $100 million. The iconic clothing retailer was purchased by a seven-year-old rental clothing startup, Le Tote, a San Francisco-based firm. The deal includes the acquisition of the brand and 38 stores. [CO]


Police surveillance fears in real estate have been stoked again. An Amazon-owned doorbell-camera company, Ring, has partnered with more than 400 police departments across the United States to provide video feeds from the front of houses. Earlier this year, a massive multifamily owner in New York faced backlash for considering the installment of facial recognition software at one of its properties. [WaPo]

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos (Credit: Getty Images)

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos (Credit: Getty Images)


Amazon kept a detailed log of insults New York public figures lodged against it. Months after the ecommerce giant backed out of plans to bring half of its second headquarters to Long Island City, the Wall Street Journal discovered a Microsoft Word document called “NY Negative Statements” that included details of insults politicians and labor leaders made. [WSJ]


A building collapse in the Bronx killed one worker and injured five. Segundo Huerta was crushed by a heavy object he was carrying when the under-construction building caved in. He was one of seven Ecuadorian relatives working at the site at East 208th Street in Norwood. [NYT]


A home mortgage refinance boom has been cut short after rates rose. The average contract interest rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage jumped to 3.94 percent, up from 3.90 last week. As a result, refinancing applications fell 8 percent, and mortgage applications to buy a home dropped 4 percent. [CNBC]

Leona Helmsley's mugshot taken after her arrest in 1988 (Credit: Wikipedia)

Leona Helmsley’s mugshot taken after her arrest in 1988 (Credit: Wikipedia)

The executors of Leona Helmsley’s estate have been awarded $100 million in fees, a judge ruled. It comes more than a decade after the death of Helmsley, who inherited a $5 billion fortune from her second husband and real estate mogul, Harry Helmsley. The decision states that the executors dealt with challenges including operating the Helmsley’s hotels and maneuvering the sale of the family’s take in the Empire State Building and other properties. [WSJ]


A former Toys “R” Us in Long Island City has new signs of life. Discount retailer Burlington Coat Factory signed a 40,000-square-foot lease for the strip mall building at 35-00 48th Street. [CO]


Staten Island’s new outlet mall has filled one third of its stores, three months after opening. Empire Outlets is currently occupied by H&M, Shake Shack, Nordstrom Rack and Brooks Brothers. Since it opened May 15, on 26 of 75 storefronts have been filled. [The City]


New York City’s infrastructure needs more money. That’s the determination of a recent report that found even though city capital spending has doubled, agencies still have less than 40 percent of their state-of-good-repair projects funded. [Crain’s]


Hollister is in advanced talks to take a space at 130 West 34th Street. While it’s unclear if the clothing retailer will take the entire 22,500-square-foot space, it would position the store opposite Macy’s flagship store, and in one of Manhattan’s key shopping districts. [NYP]


StreetEasy has crossed the river. The residential listing site, which was previously exclusive to New York’s five boroughs, has integrated some New Jersey neighborhoods to its search portal. It comes as an influx of developments have started to rise on the state’s Gold Coast. [TRD]


Taconic Investment Partners has brought on a partner for its ABC campus buy. Nuveen is joining the firm in the acquisition of a portion of Silverstein Properties’ ABC campus on the Upper West Side. The joint venture — which has purchased other real estate in the city together — paid $230 million to acquire the three-property “West End Campus.” [TRD]

Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman and Stuyvesant Town (Credit: Getty Images and Wikipedia)

Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman and Stuyvesant Town (Credit: Getty Images and Wikipedia)

Blackstone Group is currently warehousing some units at Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village. The landlord has between 20 and 50 units empty following the introduction of new state rent laws which will impact the landlord’s ability to raise rents through renovations. Blackstone previously announced it would temporarily halt renovations (with the exception of emergency issues such as leaks and hot water service) at the site. [TRD]




Verbena Road Holdings refinanced 377 East 33rd Street in Kips Bay with a $103 million loan from New York Life Insurance Company. [ACRIS]


New permit filings:

Abraham Leifer’s Aview Equities filed plans to build a 51,000-square-foot mixed-use building at 275 Livingston Street/23 Hanover Place in Downtown Brooklyn. [DOB]

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