Related expected to start Hudson Yards tower, despite lack of closed lease

A rendering of the Coach Tower
A rendering of the Coach Tower

Related Companies is likely to start work on its first Hudson Yards office tower in advance of signing a finalized lease with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the New York Post reported. The MTA board is expected to vote tomorrow to let the developer begin $50 million worth of excavation and foundation work at the site, although the lease has not closed.

Under an agreement from 2010, Related was not permitted to start developing the 26-acre site until the 99-year lease closed. But, as previously reported, MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota said last month that Stephen Ross’ Related was trying to amend the deal, which would require approval from the transit authority’s board.

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The tower’s anchor tenant, luxury retailer Coach, must move in by mid-2015 because of lease expirations at other properties.

In exchange for the early start, Related has committed to a firm lease closing date of June 1, 2013. Both parties said the closing will likely happen sooner, possibly as early as Dec. 31.

“There’s been a lot of smoke. This is fire,” MTA director of real estate Jeffrey Rosen said. [NYP, 1st item]Leigh Kamping-Carder