Mixed Use

By Patrick Hedlund

New Wall St. drop

After showing the most growth of any Manhattan neighborhood in the co-op market in 2007, the Financial District finished at the bottom last year — posting a nearly 20 percent drop in price per square foot year over year.

According to a recent report by Prudential Douglas Elliman, which covers the past decade of sales across the borough, prices per square foot for co-ops in the Financial District fell from $1,056 in 2007 to $857 last year, an 18.8 percent decrease. A limited number of sales in the market contributed to the sharp decline, as well layoffs on Wall St., the report stated.

The average sales price of co-ops also slipped 22.6 percent in the neighborhood last year, from $1.426 million in 2007 to $1.102 million in 2008, and the number of total sales tumbled from 60 to 20 year over year. However, condos in the Financial District remained steady, inching up slightly from 2007 to 2008.

The condo scene in the Battery Park City fared much better, jumping by 31 percent, from $879 per square foot in 2007 to $1,153 last year. The average price of condos in the neighborhood also increased, by 56.6 percent year over year, from $810,854 to $1,270,406.

The Soho/Tribeca co-op market also enjoyed significant gains, with a 23.6 percent uptick in prices per square foot (from $1,081 in 2007 to $1,337 last year) and a 40.2 percent increase in averages sales prices (from $1.814 million to $2.544 million year over year). The condo market also showed slight, if negligible, gains.

Additionally, the East Village/Lower East Side co-op market saw modest increases — jumping 7.9 percent in prices per square foot and 7.4 percent in average sales prices.

100 Church inks anchor

A financial-data services firm signed a 65,000-square-foot lease last week at 100 Church St. on the Tribeca-Financial District border.

Interactive Data Corporation, a global provider of financial market data and analytics to financial institutions, active traders and individual investors, will become the anchor tenant at the building, stated developer the Sapir Organization.

The company will initially occupy 51,000 square feet as part of the 15-year lease, expanding by 14,000 more over the subsequent five-year period.

IDC plans to relocate 212 employees within its Pricing and Reference Data business, including 85 evaluators, to 100 Church St. from its current offices in Midtown in November 2009.  

“We selected 100 Church Street following a comprehensive search of buildings with the appropriate infrastructure and floor plan for our company,” said Mark Hepsworth, president of Interactive Data’s Institutional Business, in a statement. “We are excited about the move to 100 Church Street and are looking forward to making it one of our two major office locations in New York City.”

The 1.13-million-square-foot, 21-story office building, between Park Pl. and Barclay St., is undergoing extensive renovations as part of a $30 million capital improvement program.

Claremont Prep has also just signed a lease for 200,000 square feet of space to house its middle school and expand to a high school with a pool and two regulation size basketball courts [See article].

Dorm life

Always wanted to live in a new building on the ultra-hip Lower East Side but never resided in the requisite tax bracket? Did you adore college life and its accompanying bunk beds and communal bathrooms?

Then the School of Visual Art’s brand-new dormitory at Delancey and Ludlow Sts. is the place for you, as the 20-story building has opened itself up to short-term renters through the end of July.

According to recent brokers’ listings, prices for two-bed units at the S.V.A. dorm start at $1,600 a month and include enrollment in a continuing-education course as part of the deal — likely a way to skirt any pesky rules stipulating only co-eds can live in the building.

Pictures of the units show the rooms’ expectedly drab, cell-like designs, but the building does include 24-hour security, as well as electricity, heat, air-conditioning, Internet, cable and laundry, all free of charge.

Each floor also has a common rec room and kitchen, but expect to hear it from your R.A. if you leave behind any dirty dishes or forget to shove a towel under the door before performing more clandestine recreational activities.

Wine wars

A state proposal to expand wine sales to New York’s supermarkets has received criticism from community advocates fearful that the move could jeopardize the state’s 2,700-plus liquor stores.

The plan, put forth by Gov. David Paterson, would act to generate $150 million for the state, mostly through franchise fees to help fill New York’s growing budget gap.

According to Tony Juliano, secretary of the Greenwich Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce, the proposal’s immediate effect would be the closing of many of the city’s independent liquor stores, since New York is one of 15 states that currently prohibit supermarket wine sales.

“I suspect that’s going to put a lot of those liquor stores out of business,” said Juliano, who, as chairperson of Community Board 4’s new Small Business Task Force, recently broached the issue with his committee. “It’s going to close some of those stores down, employees are going to lose their jobs. There’s nothing I’ve read that suggests the supermarkets are going to add staff.”

Whole Foods, with big stores in Tribeca, the Lower East Side and Chelsea, is among the stores lobbying for the change as a way to help close the state budget gap.