Picky developers put prime retail spaces at risk of becoming afterthoughts

From left: 11 Times Square, 9 West 57th Street and 1333 Broadway (building credit: PropertyShark)

While global economic concerns have landlords of vacant U.S. retail spaces scrambling for any tenant, in Manhattan, landlords are patiently awaiting the perfect tenant for their trophy spaces, the Wall Street Journal reported.

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For example, it’s not for lack of interest that the 55,000-square-foot retail space in SJP Properties’ 11 Times Square, at 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue, has sat vacant for two years. Rather the developer wants to land a big-name and raise the profile of the one million-square-foot tower.

Similarly, Sheldon Solow’s 9 West 57th Street, has let one of its retail spaces sit vacant since the building was completed decades ago. Now, brokers say, rumors no longer even surface about a potential tenant. These two spaces, in addition to Tony Malkin‘s 1333 Broadway, near 35th Street, and the retail semicircle at Lexington Avenue and 57th Street owned by Charles Cohen, are prime retail spaces so coveted by tenants, but managed so closely by developers, that they risk becoming afterthoughts.

“When is the line crossed?” said Jeffrey Roseman, a broker at Newmark Knight Frank. “Sometimes it’s when the right tenant is shunned over because the offer is a dollar off per foot. But when brokers stop paying attention to space, it’s definitely a bad thing.” [WSJ]

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