Amazon to open first NYC bookstore at Time Warner Center

Online retailer plans to open 4K sf store in the spring

Jeff Bezos and the Shops at Columbus Circle
Jeff Bezos and the Shops at Columbus Circle plans to open its first Big Apple bricks-and-mortar bookstore at a prime location — the Related Companies’ Time Warner Center.

The online retail behemoth announced late Wednesday that it will open a 4,000-square-foot store in the spring at the Shops at Columbus Circle, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Amazon is also considering opening a location at Related [TRDataCustom] and Oxford Properties Group’s shopping mall at Hudson Yards, which isn’t expected to be finished until 2018.

The Seattle-based firm, led by Jeff Bezos, opened its first bookstore in Seattle in 2015, followed by locations in San Diego and Portland, Ore., and plans to open stores in Chicago and Dedham, Mass.

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After years of focusing purely on online sales, Amazon has been making a push to open bricks-and-mortar locations. And it’s doing it at a time when the retail market has seen a decline in rents, in part due to retailers’ struggles with competition from online shopping.

Availability in nine of Manhattan’s 11 retail submarkets increased year-over-year during the third quarter, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

Amazon had long been rumored to be planning a retail location where customers could pick up same-day deliveries on the ground floor of its New York City headquarters at 7 West 34th Street, but then apparently dropped the plans.

The company is in the market for as much as 250,000 square feet of office space in Manhattan. [WSJ] – Rich Bockmann