It’s an often-overlooked enclave with the largest concentration of Federal and Greek Revival style houses in New York City. Its origins can be traced back to historical figures as esteemed as George Washington, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jacob Astor, but it’s just as deeply connected to Italian immigrants and radical 20th-century innovators. The most dyed-in-the-wool New Yorker will have trouble telling you if it’s in Greenwich Village, SoHo, or Hudson Square.
The tiny Charlton-King-VanDam neighborhood is, as its name would imply, located along charming Charlton, King, and VanDam Streets between Sixth Avenue and Varick Streets, with a little arm extending up the southernmost block of MacDougal Street just below Houston Street. It was only the fourth designated historic district in New York City when it was landmarked on August 16th, 1966, and for good reason.
The area was once the home of Richmond Hill, one of Manhattan’s most imposing mansions, built in 1767 by Major Mortier. That grand home was located on a 400-foot-high hill, “surrounded by gardens, meadows and woods, all with an impressive view of the Hudson” according to the Landmarks Preservation Commission. The mansion quickly became famous for more than just its grandeur when it was used by George Washington as his New York headquarters during the Revolutionary War. After the war, when New York City was briefly the nation’s capitol, Richmond Hill became the Vice-Presidential mansion and home of John Adams. After the capitol was moved, Aaron Burr (who would eventually succeed Adams as the country’s third Vice-President) bought the mansion and made it his private home, using it for lavish parties and social gatherings.
As New York grew northward from the tip of Manhattan, Burr saw the writing on the wall that his country estate’s days were likely numbered, and that there was money to be made in developing the land. In 1797 he mapped the property, dividing it into lots and laying out the three streets from which the neighborhood would eventually take its name. But Burr left the property undeveloped, even as he followed his President, Thomas Jefferson, to the nation’s new capitol, Washington D.C., in 1801.
Of course in 1804, in the final year of his single term as Vice-President, Burr challenged Alexander Hamilton to a duel, shooting and killing him. The scandal ended Burr’s political career and led to his fleeing New York. He soon sold the newly mapped Richmond Hill Estate to John Jacob Astor. Astor rolled the mansion down the hill to the corner of Charlton and Varick Streets, where it remained and functioned as a theater for many years. The hill upon which the mansion was located and from which it took its name was leveled, the streets were laid out, and soon after starting in the early 1820s development of rowhouses on the former estate began.
An incredibly high percentage of those houses from this first wave of development, which lasted until 1829, all in the Federal style, survive to this day. Several houses in the district were lost to early fires and replaced with Greek Revival houses in the 1830s and early 40s; most of those also survive today. In the 1880s and 90s as waves of immigrants washed over Lower Manhattan, a small number of the houses were replaced with tenements. But compared to almost every other nearby section of Manhattan, this occurred here to a remarkably small degree, with most of the houses remaining intact.
Perhaps even more remarkably, as entire blocks of similar houses were destroyed along the streets (including Charlton, King, and VanDam themselves) to the west and south of here to make way for factories in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, these houses survived. This is perhaps because most remained in private hands, while virtually the entire neighborhood to the west and south, now known as Hudson Square, was (and still is) owned by Trinity Church. Trinity, perturbed by an 1894 lawsuit by the Health Department of the City of New York over deplorable conditions in the housing it owned and operated, decided to all at once get out of the business of providing homes for people. It razed all its housing for commercial and manufacturing buildings, which came with fewer obligations. Until a 2013 rezoning of Hudson Square which allowed residential development, the Charlton-King-VanDam district remained a tiny oasis of residential life within a commercial/industrial desert south of Houston Street and west of Sixth Avenue.
While never as saturated with immigrants as neighboring Greenwich Village to the north or the South Village to the east, Charlton-King-VanDam nevertheless housed its share of new arrivals to this country and their families in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This was particularly true of immigrants from Italy, many of whom attended nearby Our Lady of Pompei Church on Bleecker Street and St. Anthony of Padua Church on Sullivan Street.
In the 20th century, Charlton-King-VanDam’s charming houses began attracting more bohemian residents, particularly those in theater and music, who appreciated its increasingly anachronistic character. It also drew education innovator Elisabeth Irwin, who in 1921 founded the Little Red Schoolhouse, considered the first progressive school in New York City, just a few blocks away on Bleecker Street. The school’s ethos of fostering creativity and individualized learning was geared towards both the bohemian and immigrant residents of the neighborhood, many of whom embraced it. Irwin, who was openly lesbian, was a radical figure in her day. Just a year before her death in 1941, Little Red Schoolhouse founded a high school at 40 Charlton Street. Now known as the Elisabeth Irwin High School, it continues to operate at that location to this day.
By the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the neighborhoods surrounding Charlton-King-VanDam, including Greenwich Village and SoHo, were becoming among the city’s most desirable and expensive. Even the low-key backwater of Hudson Square has, as a result of the 2013 rezoning, become a boomtown of new high-end residential and office development. Charlton-King-VanDam has followed as housing prices here have risen sharply, and its charming homes are increasingly sought-after. But owing to the 1966 landmark protections and a devoted population of homeowners, the area has probably changed less than any of its neighbors. While meticulously restored and cared for, the houses remain simple in design and modest in dimension and still harken back to a time when New York was just beginning its long run as an ambitious but young metropolis.
Hudson Square is undergoing another transformation. The neighborhood was once known as the Printing District because of the printing companies attracted to the large concrete and steel factory buildings located close to their Wall Street clients. In the 1970s and ‘80s, technology and design companies replaced the printing industry, attracted by the architecture, location, transportation options, and affordable rents. But the area is once again evolving. This time it’s experiencing a boom of what developers and realtors call “affordable luxury” condominiums (in the $1 – $2 million range) due to the largest privately-initiated rezoning efforts in the history of New York City. Not only is the neighborhood growing in height and residences but a large fund has been set aside to increase the neighborhood’s commercial mix, greenery, and traffic flow.
In 2013, the largest privately-initiated and virtually uncontroversial rezoning passed in NYC’s Hudson Square, also known as “West Soho.” Hudson Square, a total of 18 blocks, is bounded by Greenwich Street, West Houston Street, Varick Street and Sixth Avenue, and Canal Street. This massive rezoning effort was spearheaded by Trinity Real Estate, the property arm of the Episcopal church, with the aid of the PR firm Global Strategy Group, who describe the effort on their website as “grassroots.”
The benefits of the Hudson Square rezoning to Trinity Church were enormous. The church owned almost 40 percent of Hudson Square due to a royal act of Queen Anne, who granted the church the 215 acres of land in 1705. That 40 percent ownership included millions of square feet of commercial space and ground leases.
In the early 1900s, the Hudson Square neighborhood was known as the “Printing District” because of the numerous printing companies that set up shop in the large concrete and steel factory buildings located close to their Wall Street clients. In the 1970s and ‘80s, the printing companies moved out as technology and design companies moved in, attracted by the high ceilinged buildings, location, transportation options and affordable rents.
The old zoning rules (pre-2013) outlawed residential development but allowed for the development of commercial and manufacturing uses, such as hotels and condos. In 2007, the well-publicized protesters’ chants of “Dump the Trump” accompanied the ground-breaking ceremony of the Soho Grand Hotel. The hotel pushed the then zoning rules in height variance and was marred by controversy, lawsuits and tragedy, most notably a construction worker who fell 42 stories to his death while working on the building. (As an aside, last month, the Trump organization announced they were “exiting” their agreement with the building’s owner and no longer going to manage the failing property).
But the 2013 rezoning was a huge coup for residential development and made way for a massive residential building boom. According to a City Planning Commission report from that year, the rezoning efforts allowed for more than 3,300 units of new residential units (20 percent of which are affordable), 140,000 square feet of retail space, 140,000 square feet of office space, 75,000 square feet of community facilities, funding for nearby open space and recreational amenities, and a new K-5 school that can facilitate 450 students. It also required special permits for any hotels with more than 100 rooms.
In addition to the rezoning, there is a $27 million streetscape plan underway. The beautification project has the goals of improving traffic flow, creating open spaces, making the streets greener, and promoting pedestrian culture.
Many of the new residential buildings are termed “affordable luxury” as many of their unit prices start between $1 and $2 million. This “sweet spot” is attracting local New Yorkers who are priced out of neighboring communities but still want convenient access to them.
The first residential building to break ground after the rezoning was Extell Development’s 70 Charlton, which was designed by Beyer Blinder Belle as two towers (one 22 stories, the other 23) connected by a common lobby and a landscaped courtyard.
The architects used masonry, metal, and glass to harken back to the Printing District style of oversized openings and high ceilings. There are 91 market-rate units, starting at $1.51 million, as well as 30 affordable rentals, which started at just $833 a month.
Similarly, 570 Broome based its design on the location’s industrial past. The 25-story building is covered in Neolith sintered stone slabs (Neolith creates massive, sintered stone by fusing raw clay, feldspar, and silica together at exceptionally high temperatures) and has three-story-high expanses of glass with interiors by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. Architect Tahir Demircioglu describes the buildings’ silhouettes as “evocative of staggered cubes.” 570 Broome just launched sales this fall with prices starting at $1.37 million.
s opposed to the other two buildings, 565 Broome, designed by Renzo Piano, does not directly harken back to the Printing District but rather, “its materials will not only complement the historic context, but…introduce an elegant 21st century inflection onto that neighborhood.” The 30-story structure has 115 units, all with floor-to-ceiling curved glass windows and is on track to become Manhattan’s first “Zero Waste” residential high rise. Units start at $2.075 million.
Clearly, this neighborhood is growing at a fast pace (it’s even getting a Trader Joe’s next year). But the more things change, the more they stay the same. Real Capital Analytics reported this October that Trinity Real Estate made the largest deal of the quarter by paying $580 million to buy the leasehold at the 1.1 million-square-foot office building anchored by advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi at 375 Hudson Street in Hudson Square from Tishman Speyer. It seems that Queen Anne’s grant has grown.
NEW YORK CITY—Robert A. Iger, chair and CEO of the Walt Disney Company, and the Rev. Dr. William Lupfer, rector of Trinity Church Wall Street, announced Disney has purchased the rights to develop Trinity’s property at 4 Hudson Square in New York City. Disney will house its New York operations at the location for 99 years. The transaction was valued at $650 million.
Iger says Disney plans to build state-of-the-art facilities in the downtown Manhattan location, where employees will have all they need to do their best work and to lead the industry. In addition to being LEED-certified, Iger says the new building will also incorporate the latest technology and ability to adapt to the next generation of technological advances.
“This move represents a historic step forward toward our long-term vision for our New York operations. The Hudson Square district is rapidly becoming a dynamic, innovative hub for media, technology and other creative businesses,” says Iger. He adds Disney looks forward to investing in the growth and development of the neighborhood.
“This is a significant development in Trinity’s centuries-long commitment to this neighborhood and to the area’s continuing growth and transformation,” says Lupfer. “The transaction will help further Trinity’s mission to serve the people of New York City and around the world through our programs and ministries.”
Many of the company’s New York operations from several locations will relocate to the new development. This will include the Upper West Side Campus which was sold to Silverstein Properties in April for reportedly more than $1 billion. That property runs along West 66th Street and West End Avenue.
The 4 Hudson Square building will include offices and production spaces. The joint press release issued at the time of the acquisition states WABC-TV, the city’s most-watched station; ABC News; “Live with Kelly and Ryan” and “The View” will operate from the new facility. Disney Streaming Services will relocate to the new headquarters from their current location in Chelsea Market. However, “Good Morning America” will continue to be broadcast from its Times Square studio.
4 Hudson Square covers a full city block bordered by Hudson, Varick, Vandam and Spring streets. The property was originally a land grant given by Queen Anne to the church in 1705. Many of the offices in the Hudson Square district were constructed in the 1900s as buildings for printing presses. Today, however, the neighborhood has been rebranded as a creative industries and business hub.
Disney chose Silverstein Properties as the buyer of its Upper West Side complex due to the real estate firm’s successful track record of development in Manhattan. In addition, the real estate company provided an explicit, stated commitment to respectfully engage with the city and the local community. Disney will lease back the facilities for up to five years during the construction of 4 Hudson Square, ensuring continuity without disruptions to current operations.
In the 4 Hudson Square transaction, Eastdil Secured advised Disney and CBRE represented Trinity. For the legal matters, Kramer Levin represented Disney in both the Hudson Square and Upper West Side transactions, Fried Frank advised Trinity, and Skadden served as counsel for Silverstein Propertie
In recent years, the neighborhood now known as Hudson Square—once called Manhattan’s Printing District due to the large number of printing factories located there—has been making a quiet transformation. Media companies, attracted by the neighborhood’s large warehouse-style buildings, came first, while a 2013 rezoning of the neighborhood, which cemented the name “Hudson Square,” ushered in a wave of residential development.
Many of those projects, including Renzo Piano’s first NYC residence, are now nearing completion. (Others, including an Extell condo and rentals by Related, have already welcomed residents.) And Disney’s recent announcement to move its New York headquarters to Hudson Square has once again thrust this tiny neighborhood into the spotlight—which is a good time to look at the ongoing projects in the area.
Hudson Square is roughly bounded by West Houston Street to the north, Canal Street to the South, Varick Street to the East, and the Hudson River to the West. The neighborhood is also home to the entrance to the Holland Tunnel, and the adorably tiny Charlton-King-Vandam Historic District.
110 Charlton St
New York, NY 10014
This 30-story building on Charlton Street will bring a total of 170 apartments to the neighborhood. The project was first announced in November 2016 by a development team comprising Strategic Capital, Cape Advisors, and Forum Absolute. Since then, they’ve brought on Adamson Associates as the architect of record, and two Parisian firms, Loci Anima and Sebastien Segers, as the design architects. Apartments at Greenwich West will ask from just under $1 million, with sales expected to get underway this fall. Construction on this project is expected to wrap in 2020.
2. Disney New York headquarters
304 Hudson St
New York, NY 10013
Earlier this month, the Walt Disney Company announced plans to develop its new New York headquarters at 4 Hudson Square. Disney picked up a five-parcel site from Trinity Church Real Estate for a whopping $650 million. The new headquarters will be built to LEED certifications and will be home to The View, Live with Kelly and Ryan, and WABC-TV.
570 Broome St
New York, NY 10013
Once home to Our Lady of Vilnius Church, a national parish for the Lithuanian Catholic community from 1910 to its demolition in 2015, this site is now home to a 25-story condo designed by Tahir Demircioglu of Builtd. Located next to the Holland Tunnel entrance, the condo is currently under construction, and will feature interiors by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. In all, the building will have 54 apartments that are currently on the market from $1.35 million.
565 Broome St
New York, NY 10013
Despite the “Soho” in the name of Renzo Piano’s first NYC residential project, the location—south of and across the street from 570 Broome—puts it within our boundaries for Hudson Square. The project is a 30-story dual tower structure with 115 apartments. Sales launched in 2016 with apartments asking from just under $1 million. Recently, the condo building unveiled its sky-high penthouse for $40.5 million—it comes with a private, outdoor swimming pool. Construction on the condo should wrap later this year.
111 Varick St
New York, NY 10013
The only rental in the mix, Madigan Development’s 30-story tower will bring a total of 100 luxury apartments to the area. In February this year, the developer secured a $73 million construction loan, allowing work to move forward. The apartments here will measure just over 1,000 square feet on average, and have condo-like finishes, according to the developer’s website. Madison has been feuding with the Agime Group over the latter’s tower at 570 Broome Street, over how both buildings will block each others’ views.
100 Vandam St
New York, NY 10013
This quirky residential development was first announced toward the end of 2015, but it wasn’t until late last year that detailed plans materialized. Florida-based developer Jeff Greene plans to demolish the interiors of a six-story red-brick building at the corner of Vandam and Greenwich Streets and build a 25-story tower that will keep the exterior of the brick structure at the base. The building will have 70 condos, an automated parking garage for 11 cars, a gym, and a subterranean screening room. COOKFOX is designing the condo, and Terrain NYC will work on the landscaping.
77 Charlton St
New York, NY 10014
This warehouse-replacing project will see the creation of two 15-story towers that sit upon a common base, similar to 565 Broome Street. Developer Toll Brothers purchased the warehouse in 2012 for $56.5 million, but it wasn’t until early 2017 that the firm announced development plans. The condo will bring 161 apartments to Hudson Square; earlier this year, plans filed with Attorney General’s office revealed that Toll Brothers is going for a $324 million sellout, which translates to about $2 million per unit on average. It’s not yet clear when work on this project will wrap.
8. Jackie Robinson Museum
75 Varick St
New York, NY 10013
Decades in the making, the Jackie Robinson Museum, will finally open to the public in the spring of 2019, on the ground floor of a former warehouse building at the corner of Canal and Varick Streets. The museum will not just highlight the life of this American baseball hero and civil rights icon but also look to address ongoing issues of racial inequality. The museum will span 18,500 square feet and have features like a 75-seat theater, two flexible galleries for traveling exhibits, classrooms, and retail space.
9. 60 Charlton Street
60 Charlton St
New York, NY 10014
A year after a developer put down $65 million on a mid-size warehouse building on Charlton Street, the firm has now announced plans to transform it into a large office and retail building. While the exterior of the existing six-story, red brick building will remain, its interiors will be gutted, and a 12-story glass building will rise from within it. The building will have retail on the ground and cellar level, and offices above that. HOK is behind the design of this expansion.
This week, the Greenwich West condominium tower officially broke ground in Hudson Square, Manhattan, at 110 Charlton Street. The first renderings have also been revealed, showing an exterior mix of classical masonry tinged with industrial-inspired ornamentation, typical for the SoHo-adjacent neighborhood.
The building is designed in partnership by French architects Loci Anima and Sebastien Segers with architects of record Adamson Associates. Curbed was the first to report on the renderings this week.
The development will replace an assemblage of warehouses purchased in 2016 for $78 million . The new 30-story tower is expected to yield 170 apartments spread across 225,802 square feet, with an additional 2,800-square-foot retail space on the ground floor. Plans also detail a parking garage located on the building’s first through fourth floors with accommodations for 34 vehicles.
Residential amenities have not yet been confirmed by the project team which now includes developers Strategic Capital, Cape Advisors and Forum Absolute.
Base-line properties will be offered starting just under $1 million, with sales led by Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group. Painter Aaron Zulpo has been tapped to produce illustrations for the building’s marketing campaign.
The steel superstructure for 68-74 Trinity Place is now rising quickly into the Financial District’s neighborhood skyline. Designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects, with Stephen B. Jacobs Group as the executive architect, the 26-story building is being developed by Trinity Real Estate, and will include around 310,000 square feet of rentable office space that will start from the seventh floor and continue up to the top of the nearly 500-foot-tall tower.
Steel framework has already passed the main setback, as seen in the above construction photos. Most of the interior is composed from diagonal trusses that transfer the weight of the top portion of the building to its podium.
The first five floors will be for public use, which most likely includes the original pedestrian bridge that will connect the office tower with the backside of Trinity Church crossing above Church Street. Offices for Trinity Church will be located on the sixth and eighth floor.
Several design changes had been seen in the past, but the final renders and recent construction photos show a steel structure encased in glass on all sides, with a series of thin vertical louvers on the eastern facade facing Trinity Church.
Trinity’s latest office tower may not be as tall as its new surrounding neighbors like 50 West Street, 77 Greenwich Street, and 125 Greenwich Street, but the reflective glass facade could substantially impact the aesthetics of the overall architectural style and adherence surrounding Trinity Church. The landmark is in the middle of traditional-style skyscrapers known for ornate stone work and masonry, mostly dating from the late 1800’s up to the 1920’s.
Only time will tell how the outside of 68-74 Trinity will look when it’s fully enclosed.
A completion date has not been announced yet, but 2020 appears likely.
In a move that could speed the transformation of two Manhattan neighborhoods, the Walt Disney Company said on Monday that it would move its New York operations from its longtime home on the Upper West Side to Hudson Square, the downtown neighborhood once known as the printing district now being refashioned into a home for media, advertising, internet and other “creative” companies.
Disney, which is in the midst of acquiring 21st Century Fox, plans to build a modern, one-million-square-foot complex that would house ABC headquarters, WABC News, offices, production facilities and studios, including those for “The View” and “Live With Kelly and Ryan,” on an entire block bounded by Hudson, Varick, Van Dam and Spring Streets. The company is leasing the property, known as Four Hudson Square, for 99 years from Trinity Church in a deal valued at $650 million.
On Tuesday, Disney plans to close on a separate agreement to sell its two Upper West Side campuses to the developer Larry Silverstein for $1.155 billion. Disney is leasing back the eight buildings that comprise its operations from Silverstein for up to five years while it draws up plans for the downtown complex, demolishes the existing buildings at Hudson Square and erects a new home.
Robert A. Iger, the chairman and chief executive of The Walt Disney Company, said in a statement Monday that the new building will let it adapt new technology and that the “move represents a historic step forward toward our long-term vision for our New York operations. The Hudson Square district is rapidly becoming a dynamic, innovative hub for media, technology and other creative businesses.”
Disney has not yet settled on an architect for the complex, but a spokeswoman said the company is working with Hines, a development and management company, on the project. Eastdil Secured, a real estate investment bank, worked on both the sale of its campus and the deal to build downtown at Four Hudson Square.
Trinity Church, the Lower Manhattan Episcopal parish, remains one of the city’s biggest landowners, and it owns many of the buildings in Hudson Square, once the home of New York’s printing industry. While some of the former industrial space has been converted to industrial chic office space for tech companies over the last two decades, Disney plans a new high-tech complex that it could not create at its buildings on the Upper West Side.
Several years ago, the 18-block Hudson Square area was rezoned at Trinity’s behest to allow for new residential development and modern office space, though not for the super-tall towers rising in Midtown.
The area’s evolution is similar to the transformation of other Manhattan industrial neighborhoods, like the garment district, the flower district and the meatpacking district, which have become havens for white-collar companies and luxury apartment dwellers.
“This is a significant development in Trinity’s centuries-long commitment to this neighborhood and to the area’s continuing growth and transformation,” said the Rev. Dr. William Lupfer, rector of Trinity Church Wall Street.
Disney will retain ownership of the Armory it renovated on West 66th Street, where its sports broadcasting arm, ESPN, has offices.
But the sale could accelerate the profound changes that have hit the Upper West Side, in recent years, as Disney vacates its buildings on Columbus Avenue and 66th and 67th Streets and on West End Avenue between 66th and 67th Streets. Silverstein Properties has not disclosed its plans for those properties, or for a parking lot it owns nearby. But the most likely outcome would be a new series of tall residential towers.
Silverstein promised to work with the local community in defining what could be built there.
Marty Burger, chief executive of Silverstein Properties, said, “We look forward to working collaboratively with all our stakeholders, as we have always done, as we assume responsibility for Disney’s properties in the heart of Manhattan’s Upper West Side.”
Disney had already sold air rights to its properties to the developer Gary Barnett, the principal at Extell Development, who is planning to build a super-tall tower on West 66th Street. The plan has faced stiff opposition from many in the neighborhood.
Project will improve pedestrian, vehicular and bicycle safety between Canal and West Houston Streets, and include public realm improvements along the corridor
New York– New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), in partnership with the Hudson Square Connection Business Improvement District (HSC), today announced a major investment for the Hudson Street streetscape between Canal Street and West Houston Street, to improve pedestrian, bicycle and vehicular safety, while transforming the corridor into a grand boulevard that will beautify the neighborhood.
As part of the $27 million Hudson Square is Now streetscape improvement plan, this key project will extend sidewalks up to five feet and add new street amenities along the seven-block corridor.
Rendering by AKRF and W Architecture and Landscape Architecture
Designed in partnership with NYCEDC and consulting firms AKRF and W Architecture and Landscape Architecture the project scope will include:
- 8041 square feet of planting areas filled with various trees, shrubs, and perennials
- Application of the Hudson Square Standard for urban forestry, using continuous tree pits and permeable pavers to maximize stormwater capture and support healthier trees
- New benches providing the capacity for approximately 168 seats
- 2,255 square feet of allowable space for future sidewalk cafes
- Sidewalk realignments and new pedestrian ramps
- A dedicated and parking-protected bike lane on Hudson Street from Houston to Canal Street
- Over 40 additional bicycle racks
For more renderings of the project click here.
The design creates continuity with the strolling environment of Hudson Street in the West Village, and also evokes the district’s industrial past while accommodating the contemporary needs of the area’s creative workforce. Additionally, the design includes several elements that are also being installed in Spring Street Park, which is slated to open this summer.
NYCEDC and DOT, in partnership with HSC, began preliminary design of the streetscape in February 2017. Construction will commence in Spring 2019, with completion expected in 2021.
“The Hudson Street streetscape will become a vibrant connection for surrounding communities,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation President James Patchett. “We are very pleased to work with our partners to beautify this area through public realm enhancements and improve public safety conditions for all New Yorkers.”
“We are pleased to work with EDC and the Hudson Square Connection to bring significant streetscape enhancements to Hudson Street,” said DOT Manhattan Borough Commissioner Luis Sanchez. “The project will bring additional sidewalk space, energy efficient street lighting, bike racks, and a parking protected bike lane to an area thriving with pedestrians and cyclists. We believe these enhancements make the area safer and more enjoyable for all road users.”
“This project, a cornerstone of our $27 million streetscape improvement plan, Hudson Square is Now, is designed to provide a lush green boulevard that can be shared by all users – pedestrians, bicycles and vehicles,” said Ellen Baer, President of the Hudson Square Connection Business Improvement District. “The unique design will evoke the strolling environment of the iconic Hudson Street of Greenwich Village while reinforcing the unique vibe of today’s Hudson Square.”
“Today marks a major step forward for the Hudson Square is Now streetscape plan, which promises to transform a part of the city once known for car horns and gridlock into a neighborhood oasis and make the area more environmentally and socially sustainable in the process,” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson. I applaud the Hudson Square Connection for the invaluable work it is doing and I thank DOT and EDC for their help in making this dream project a reality.”
“The improvements slated for Hudson Square will take the area from an afterthought to a wonderful new destination for workers, residents and visitors,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer.
“CB2 Manhattan strongly supports this plan which represents a welcome potential for transforming Hudson St. into a vibrant place for people,” said Shirley Secunda, Chair of CB2’s Traffic & Transportation Committee.
HSC’s comprehensive $27 million streetscape improvement plan, Hudson Square is Now, was conceived as a public-private partnership with the City of New York. The plan proposes physical improvements on public land to manage traffic, create pedestrian-friendly open spaces, identify sustainability opportunities, and support retail opportunities. Each improvement is designed toward creating a pedestrian-friendly environment that improves the quality of life for the people that live, work in, and visit Hudson Square.
To date, HSC has implemented several key improvements identified in the multi-phase master plan, including the planting and retrofitting of 250 trees as part of the award-winning Hudson Square Standard. In 2015, Hudson Square is Now received an International Downtown Association Planning Merit Award.
New York City Economic Development Corporation is the City’s primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. NYCEDC’s mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City’s competitive position. NYCEDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City’s many opportunities. Find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, or visit our blog to learn more about NYCEDC projects and initiatives.
About the Hudson Square Connection
The Hudson Square Connection business improvement district is leading the effort to improve the public spaces in a major creative hub, home to more than 40,000 people working in advertising, design, media, technology, and other cutting-edge businesses. In 2012, the Connection unveiled its $27 million, neighborhood improvement plan for improving pedestrian safety, traffic flow, and the overall streetscape environment through a public-private partnership with the City. The neighborhood is generally bounded by Clarkson Street on the north, Canal Street on the south, 6th Avenue on the east and Greenwich Street on the west.
74 Trinity Place will be a substantial addition to the Financial District’s tapestry of buildings, and now, work for the project is starting to progress above ground level. Once complete, the 26-story tower will bring 310,000 square feet of new office space to the neighborhood, which is somewhat of a surprise, since it was originally expected to house condominiums.
The bottom five floors will be dedicated to public use, with floors six through eight set to house the offices of Trinity Church. The 17 floors above will become rentable office space. Trinity Real Estate is responsible for the development.
Thanks to images by 5B Films and NY Construction, we do see that the installation of steel framing has started, but has not begun to reach significant heights.
Once finished, 74 Trinity Place, along with its neighbor at 77 Greenwich Street, will add substantially to the Financial District’s ongoing resurgence. Most new development in the surrounding blocks has been of the budget hotel variety, at least until 50 West Street began to rise at the start of the decade. In any case, with projects like 125 Greenwich Street and 5 World Trade Center also in the works, the area’s population is becoming increasingly in-transient.
Stephen B. Jacobs Group is acting as the executive architect, with Pelli Clarke Pelli responsible for the design. The curtain wall façade will have setbacks on the sixth and eighth floors, opening up to outdoor terraces, and the existing pedestrian bridge will be integrated into the new building.
A completion date has not been formally announced, but signage indicates a 2020 estimate.
CBRE and Newmark Grubb Knight Frank (NGKF) have been appointed exclusive leasing agents for nine of the 11 buildings in the Hudson Square office and retail portfolio owned by Trinity Church Wall Street and Norges Bank Real Estate Management.
Hines, which manages the assets on behalf of the owners, said the partnership will give ownership the benefit of double the borkerage expertise.
“These teams are complementary and collegial, and together they bring formidable talent and market knowledge to their assignments,” said Tommy Craig, Senior Managing Director, Hines. “Ownership views these properties as a unified portfolio, but the market will recognize each building for its particular assets and opportunities. CBRE and NGKF will help the market understand every floor, every space and every option that these assets offer. It’s a large assignment — even in half.”
Hines said the appointment of two distinct firms will enable the five million-square-foot portfolio to benefit from diverse expertise, thereby expanding reach for the marketing of the properties.
Hines also noted that CBRE and NGKF, combined, are responsible for more than two-thirds of all leasing activity in the Hudson Square market.
CBRE will serve as exclusive marketing agent for five buildings located in the northern end of Hudson Square, including 10 Hudson Square, 225 Varick Street, and 345, 350 and 435 Hudson Street. Vice Chairmen Howard Fiddle and Paul Amrich, along with Senior Vice President Joan Meixner, will lead the CBRE team on this assignment.
NGKF will be exclusive leasing agent for four properties located in the southern portion of Hudson Square, including 1 Hudson Square, 100 and 155 Avenue of the Americas, and 205 Hudson Street.
David Falk, President New York Tri-State Region, and Peter Shimkin, Executive Managing Director, of NGKF will head the office leasing assignment.
In addition, NGKF will serve as exclusive leasing agent for retail space throughout the entire portfolio. Mitchell Friedel, Executive Vice President of NGKF will direct this assignment.
The remaining two properties in the portfolio, 200 Hudson Street and 12-16 Vestry Street, are fully leased with no impending vacancy.
Hines Will Manage 11-Building Portfolio Totaling 4.9 Million Square Feet
New Partnership Reaffirms Trinity’s Commitment to the Hudson Square Neighborhood
NEW YORK (April 29, 2016) — Hudson Square Properties LLC, a joint venture of Trinity Church Wall Street and Norges Bank Real Estate Management, today announced that, after a comprehensive review process, international real estate firm Hines has been selected as the operating partner for its portfolio of 11 office buildings in Hudson Square comprising 4.9 million square feet of commercial space. Hines will become the operating partner, effective June 1, acquiring a minority equity stake of one percent of the portfolio. Trinity Church Wall Street maintains a 51% majority interest in the joint venture, and Norges Bank Real Estate Management retains a 48% stake for the duration of the 75-year ownership period.
The joint venture partnership results in a diversification of Trinity’s total assets for the critical purpose of sustaining the church’s mission that encompasses programs, services, and ministries reaching millions of people in New York City and around the world.
“This partnership marks an exciting new chapter in Trinity’s centuries-long commitment to Hudson Square and the city of New York. Following decades of investment in our properties and the community, Hudson Square is poised to continue its dynamic growth and transformation into a vibrant, 24-hour neighborhood,” said the Reverend Dr. William Lupfer, Rector of Trinity Church Wall Street. “We are pleased to welcome Hines into the joint venture as a partner that shares our values and understands the critical role these holdings represent in sustaining our ministries around the world.”
Hines, active in the New York market since 1981, has made major contributions to the city’s skyline including Philip Johnson’s “Lipstick Building” at 866 Third Avenue and the recently completed 7 Bryant Park office tower. Hines is currently involved in four major development projects underway in Manhattan: as developer of the $1.5 billion residential tower 53w53 above the Museum of Modern Art, and as builder of 56 Leonard Street, 100 East 53rd Street and One Vanderbilt Avenue. Hines manages $13.5 billion in assets throughout the tri-state region.
“Hines looks forward to the careful stewardship of these important assets and contributing to the vibrant future of the Hudson Square area,” said Tommy Craig, Senior Managing Director and head of Hines’ TriState activities. “We are pleased that Trinity Church and Norges have placed their trust in our team and I am confident we will be a successful partner.”
In January, Trinity and Norges Bank Real Estate Management issued a request for qualifications, casting a wide net seeking well established companies with significant experience managing large commercial properties in Manhattan. Subsequently, a request for proposals solicited qualified firms to provide long term visions for maximizing the potential of the portfolio. During a months-long, highly deliberative process, respondents were vetted to ensure that potential partners align with Trinity’s core values and responsible stewardship of one of New York’s oldest neighborhoods. The thorough process yielded an outstanding list of finalists from which Hines was chosen.
Trinity, one of the oldest parishes in the nation, has played a prominent role in lower Manhattan for more than 300 years and owns 40 percent of the land in Hudson Square. Properties in the joint venture portfolio include: 12-16 Vestry Street, 200 Hudson Street, 205 Hudson Street, 75 Varick Street, 100 Avenue of the Americas, 155 Avenue of the Americas, 345 Hudson Street, 350 Hudson Street, 10 Hudson Square, 225 Varick Street and 435 Hudson Street. The properties are unencumbered by debt.
The office buildings on the properties were originally built in the early 1900s to house printing presses, but have been redeveloped by Trinity Church Wall Street into a hub for creative industries and businesses that are drawn by the energy of the neighborhood and the flexibility of the space. At present, the buildings are approximately 94 percent leased. The joint venture will work with Hines to select qualified third-party brokerage firms to provide landlord representation for office and retail leasing.
Some operations of Trinity Real Estate, the property arm of Trinity Church that previously managed the Hudson Square portfolio along with the church’s other holdings, will be folded into the joint venture under Hines. Trinity’s other real estate holdings not included in the joint venture will be restructured within the Trinity Church Wall Street organization.
About Trinity Church Wall Street
Now in its fourth century, Trinity Church Wall Street is a vibrant and welcoming Episcopal community with a wide-ranging ministry of service to others. The parish welcomes approximately three million visitors per year to its historic Lower Manhattan sanctuaries, Trinity Church and St. Paul’s Chapel. Trinity’s mission focuses on worship, social justice, music, art, and education, both locally and worldwide. More than 20 worship services are offered every week, many of which are webcast online at trinitywallstreet.org.
Hines is a privately owned global real estate investment firm founded in 1957 with a presence in 182 cities in 20 countries. Hines has $89.1 billion of assets under management, including $42.5 billion for which Hines provides fiduciary investment management services, and $46.6 billion for which Hines provides third-party property-level services. The firm has 109 developments currently underway around the world. Historically, Hines has developed, redeveloped or acquired 1,126 properties, totaling over 351 million square feet. The firm’s current property and asset management portfolio includes 457 properties, representing over 193 million square feet. With extensive experience in investments across the risk spectrum and all property types, and a pioneering commitment to sustainability, Hines is one of the largest and most-respected real estate organizations in the world. Visit www.hines.com for more information.
Norges Bank Investment Management, which oversees Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, has entered into contract to acquire a 44 percent interest in a portfolio comprising 11 office properties in New York City, in a joint venture with Trinity Wall Street.
The binding agreement was signed on November 20, 2015 and is expected to close before year-end 2015.
Norges Bank Investment Management will acquire its 44 percent share in a 75‐year ownership interest for 1.56 billion dollars, valuing the properties at 3.55 billion dollars. The assets will be unencumbered by debt at closing.
The properties are approximately 94 percent leased and total over 4.9 million square feet. They are all located in the Hudson Square neighborhood of Midtown South in Manhattan.
Properties include 12‐16 Vestry Street, 200 Hudson Street, 205 Hudson Street, 75 Varick Street, 100 Avenue of the Americas, 155 Avenue of the Americas, 345 Hudson Street, 350 Hudson Street, 10 Hudson Square, 225 Varick Street and 435 Hudson Street. The total portfolio comprises more than 30 percent of the Hudson Square commercial neighborhood.
The buildings were originally built in the early 1900’s to house printing presses, but have been redeveloped by Trinity Church to attract a mix of creative office tenants.
The joint venture results in a diversification of Trinity’s total assets, currently overwhelmingly in real estate, for the critical purpose of sustaining the church’s mission that encompasses programs, services, and ministries reaching millions of people in New York City and around the world.
Reverend Dr. William Lupfer, Rector of Trinity Wall Street said: “For more than 300 years, Trinity Church has nurtured and shared its gift of land in Hudson Square, which has directly supported the church and its mission, as well as the growth of New York City. Our partnership with Norges Bank Investment Management will help to sustain Trinity’s ministries around the globe for many generations to come.”
About Trinity Church Wall Street
Now in its fourth century, Trinity Church Wall Street is a vibrant and welcoming Episcopal community with a wide-‐ranging ministry of service to others. The parish welcomes approximately three million visitors per year to its historic Lower Manhattan sanctuaries, Trinity Church and St. Paul’s Chapel. Trinity’s mission focuses on worship, social justice, music, art, and education, both locally and worldwide. More than 20 worship services are offered every week, many of which are webcast online at trinitywallstreet.org.
NEW YORK CITY—Trinity Wall Street Episcopal Church has reached an agreement in principle to partner with Norway’s sovereign wealth for 11 of its office buildings in the Hudson Square section of Manhattan, according to Bloomberg News.
A church spokeswoman confirms that the organization’s governing body has voted to proceed with the joint venture, though she declined to reveal financial details. Trinity owns one of Manhattan largest office property portfolios.
The deal with Norway’s fund—known as Norges—will allow the church “to diversify its real estate assets in order to ensure that it will be able to sustain the hundreds of programs, services and ministries provided by the church in service to millions of people for generations to come,” the spokeswoman says.
The transaction comprises about 5 million square feet of office space, according to the spokeswoman. She declined to say which properties are involved. However, most of the church’s office buildings sit north of Canal Street near the Holland Tunnel entrance and west of Sixth Avenue. Trinity’s tenants, according to its website, include MTV Networks, Saatchi & Saatchi and CBS.
“By reallocating these holdings, Trinity continues its tradition of responsible stewardship for the long-term benefit of our mission, both in New York and beyond,” Reverend Dr. William Lupfer, the church rector, tells Bloomberg.
In the second quarter, rents in the Hudson Square/West Village area averaged $68.47 a square foot, according to Cushman & Wakefield. Included in the Midtown South submarket, the area features nearly 11 million square feet of office space.
At $830 billion, Norges is the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund. It has been expanding its real estate holdings by buying properties in New York, Paris, London and Berlin. Its holdings here include stakes in Times Square Tower, 601 Lexington Ave and, as of this past March, 11 Times Square.
Lower Manhattan’s Trinity Wall Street Episcopal Church reached an agreement in principle to bring in Norway’s sovereign wealth fund as a partner for 11 of its office buildings in the borough’s Hudson Square neighborhood.
The church’s governing body voted to proceed with the joint venture late Wednesday afternoon, Betsy Vorce, Trinity’s chief communications officer, said by telephone. She declined to disclose financial details, saying the deal still needs final review and documentation.
Trinity, whose chapel sits across Broadway from the western end of Wall Street, traces its ownership of Manhattan property to the early 1700s. The deal with Norway’s fund will enable the institution “to diversify its real estate assets in order to ensure that it will be able to sustain the hundreds of programs, services and ministries provided by the church in service to millions of people for generations to come,” Ms. Vorce said.
Norway’s $830 billion sovereign-wealth fund, the biggest in the world, has been expanding in real estate, snapping up properties in cities including New York, Paris, London and Berlin. Its Manhattan holdings include stakes in Times Square Tower and 601 Lexington Ave.
The fund was informed by Trinity that it was picked as the preferred partner, Line Aaltvedt, a spokeswoman, said in an e-mail on Thursday. “We don’t have any further comments until an agreement has been signed,” she said.
The Trinity transaction comprises about 5 million square feet (465,000 square meters) of offices, according to Ms. Vorce. She declined to specify the properties involved, saying that it is still subject to negotiation. The church’s office buildings mostly lie north of Canal Street near the Holland Tunnel entrance and west of Sixth Avenue.
Trinity’s Manhattan real estate holdings date back to a 1705 grant of 215 acres from Britain’s Queen Anne. Originally farmland, many of the properties would later house print shops used by the city’s financial institutions.
As manufacturing declined, the buildings gradually became popular with technology and creative companies. Tenants include MTV Networks, the Saatchi & Saatchi advertising firm and CBS, according to the church’s website.
Hudson Square is part of Manhattan’s midtown south office market, which has the lowest vacancy rate in the U.S. The Hudson Square/West Village area, which consists of 10.7 million square feet of offices, had a second-quarter vacancy rate of 6.7%, compared with 6.2% for midtown south, according to Cushman & Wakefield Inc. Rents averaged $68.47 a square foot, higher than midtown south’s $66.86.
“By reallocating these holdings, Trinity continues its tradition of responsible stewardship for the long-term benefit of our mission, both in New York and beyond,” Reverend Dr. William Lupfer, the church rector, said in an e-mailed statement.
Trinity Real Estate has found a venture partner for its 11-building portfolio in Hudson Square: Norway’s sovereign-wealth fund, the largest in the world.
The real estate arm of Trinity Wall Street Episcopal Church agreed, in principle, to bring in the $830 billion fund as a partner on 5 million square feet of real estate.
The church’s governing body voted late Wednesday on the deal, Bloomberg News reported Thursday. Financial terms were not disclosed, but sources previously told The Real Deal that the offering could fetch $3 billion. An earlier offering of just four buildings was expected to go for $1.25 billion.
The partnership will enable Trinity “to diversify its real estate assets in order to ensure that it will be able to sustain the hundreds of programs, services and ministries provided by the church in service to millions of people for generations to come,” Betsy Vorce, Trinity’s chief communications officer, said.
Trinity took bids last month from suitors including SL Green Realty, Vornado Realty Trust, Brookfield Property Partners and Ivanhoe Cambridge. CBRE’s Darcy Stacom was marketing the properties.
Norges Bank Investment Management, a division of Norway’s central bank, has been expanding its real estate holdings globally and in New York.
In February, the fund acquired a 49 percent interest in 11 Times Square, following a $725 million deal in September to buy a 45 percent interest in Citigroup Center at 601 Lexington Avenue from Boston Properties.
Trinity’s ownership of 215 acres of Manhattan real estate dates back to 1705.
1 Hudson Square, with 1.2 million square feet, is the largest of the 11 buildings in Trinity’s offering, which also included 100 Avenue of the Americas, 155 Avenue of the Americas, 10 Hudson Square, 200 Hudson Street, 205 Hudson Street, 345 Hudson Street, 350 Hudson Street, 435 Hudson Street, 225 Varick Street and 16 Vestry Street.
“By reallocating these holdings, Trinity continues its tradition of responsible stewardship for the long-term benefit of our mission, both in New York and beyond,” Reverend Dr. William Lupfer, the church rector, told Bloomberg in an emailed statement.