Real estate in brief

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The winning entry in the design competition at the Atlas building

Swig closes lease with H&R Block

Swig Equities has signed a new lease with H&R Block, the world’s largest tax services group, at 5 Hanover Square. H&R Block will be leasing 1,902 square feet of retail space in the Financial District spot, located on the corner of Pearl Street. Swig Equities’ Todd Korren, with Mel Zimmermann and Andrew Puleo of Helmsley Spear, represented the landlord in the deal, according to a press release sent from the Swig Equities office.

Historic preservation group lobbies for landmarking “South Village”

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The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission will host a public hearing tomorrow on the possible landmark designation of Greenwich Village’s so-called “South Village” neighborhood, which is located south of Washington Square Park and is centered around Carmine, Bleecker, MacDougal and Sullivan streets. The South Village, unlike the rest of the Greenwich Village neighborhood, is not landmarked, yet contains vital Italian-immigrant historical sites, according to the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. The society’s pitch to landmark the area comes after the destruction of important city landmarks, the group alleges. “In recent years developers and institutions like NYU have destroyed more and more of its historic sites and architecture, including the Provincetown Playhouse, the Circle in the Square Theater, the Sullivan Street Playhouse, and the Tunnel Garage,” the group said in a release sent today.

Garment District rental building serves as site for interior decoration contest

Two interior design heavyweights recently went head to head at the Atlas New York rental building for a competition to see who could design the “quintessential Manhattan apartment” in under 45 minutes. The contestants, HGTV host Krista Watterworth and New York City-based designer Oskar Torres, were given identical units in the building at 66 West 38th Street on the corner of Sixth Avenue, and given 15 minutes to select furniture provided by Pier 1 Imports, according to a release sent today. After that, the contestants had 30 minutes to arrange the furniture within the homes. Watterworth came out on top, with her team winning the “Best Design” prize.

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