Hudson Square, New York City, Disney discussed on Realty Speak

Realty Speak


I say? Real estate is is in my DNA now back to the show. The first rezoning took place in two thousand thirteen and the second one was two thousand seventeen so if we go back to two thousand nine I guess it took four years for the first one and I guess eight years for the second one. No it took. I would say to way a longer than four years for the first one if you were to ask Trinity at. It took several lifetimes but the rezoning was in the works as the bid was in the works works the original rezoning the two thousand thirteen rezoning. That was really the big creation of the Hudson Square special district. What percentage of the area was rezoned as of two two thousand thirteen? So as of two thousand thirteen the original boundaries of the bid was rezoned one hundred percent and part of the reason. The bid was helpful in that process. was that we were able to be a vehicle to assure that public amenities would be installed installed and maintained in association with zoning the second rezoning which is the two thousand seventeen rezoning is really just the rezoning of what was the Saint John's terminal which is was at that time the largest footprint. Office building in Manhattan. It's where they highlight originally terminated and that building which which had been very under utilized for a number of years was rezoned just that building was rezoned and in that action the developers also gave one hundred million dollars to Hudson River Park for excess air rights so that was a separate rezoning that really only dealt with five fifty Washington and that was rezoned to Oh it was rezoned to allow. There was a hybrid scenario which allowed the building to be divided into about half residential half commercial shaw now with this residential development. That's going on in Hudson. Square is their mandatory inclusionary housing. This was before mandatory inclusionary housing but there is voluntary inclusionary housing and there is a bonus provision for that and several of the developments are including affordable housing. So there are awesome affordable rentals in the area. Yes there are some affordable rentals in the area. Would you say are the stakeholders that benefiting most from this the office building the owners the retail building owners the existing co-ops and I guess there weren't really any existing condos but the renew condos now and and then of course the multifamily rental properties who'd you say are the stakeholders that are benefiting most from the Hudson Square bid. I think that probably the biggest beneficiary are the commercial tenants and therefore of course the commercial property owners let me just say a word. What about that with the creative companies and the tech companies? Who are coming into Hudson Square today? Of course they're concerned about rent. They're running businesses but what their real challenge for. Their businesses is attracting talent and one of the things. The Hudson Square bid tries to do is to provide a neighborhood which will be a tool for these companies in attracting talent. I talked about the campus like environment that we've created here. That's something that we liked to say that if someone is being offered a job at a company X. which is located somewhere else in New York City or somewhere else outside of New York City and they're being offered the same job for the same salary in Hudson Square. We want to be able to make the difference. We want to be able to say we want that a person to say this neighborhood is great. It's a place I want to work. These things are important to a lot of the people who were choosing where to work today and we hope to help satiate. She ate that competition for talent. Disney and Google. Obviously you're going to be here. Google is already occupying some of the existing space that they've leased who are some of the other tenants that are attracting talent to the neighborhood. We have so many. We have places as diverse as worby Parker and New York public radio. The have eshelman public relations. We still have saatchi-and-saatchi we have horizon media. We have Viacom and then we have lots of small mall companies companies of videography and different kinds of graphic designers. And we have artists of different kinds people experimenting with sound and experimenting with light people who are creating new products to bring to the technology market for use by creative industries. We have a lot of companies that decide that they want to have their marketing arms down here. So for example Pepsi has a small marketing office here other agencies some of the some of the accounting firms have marketing offices down here because there's just something about creativity and innovation that thrives when people are surrounded with like minds. It's a wonderful wonderful thing to send online at a lunch place in Hudson Square and here the kinds of things that people are talking about and the ideas that are being exchanged how always google and Disney attracted to Hudson Square. I WanNa tell the story about Disney because I just love this story. There was a big site owned by Trinity was multiple buildings and once it became known that Disney was looking for space. I'm sure that they were neighborhoods. All over the city buying for such a marquee tenant to come into their area. What we're told is that actually Bob Eiger? WHO's the head of Disney without anybody knowing it walked some of those neighborhoods because what Disney wanted was to capture a certain kind of culture for their workers and that he walked and walked and walked around here and I guess nobody recognized him? He came to feel that this was really the kind of place that he thought that Disney could thrive. He really picked up the vibe of what's going on in this neighborhood going on on the streets going on in the cafe's going on the lines ends of people waiting for lunch. He really picked it up and thought she's this is really where we WANNA be. What are some of the legacy features of Oddsson Square that you preserved in terms of businesses and streetscape when we first started doing our plan? The first thing we did is we went on a listening tour and something something really interesting happen. We found that the okay there were thirty thousand people working here nut seventy thousand at the time. We certainly didn't talked all thirty thousand but we found that everybody everybody who we talked to who worked here and lived here. Maybe took classes here. We found they really loved it here and so we began as we began to do our plan. We began to think. Gee We don't want to change a place that people really love. What would be the point of that? So everything we've done tries is to preserve the essence of this neighborhood and the essence of this neighborhood is something that's gritty. It's authentically New York the buildings things very much typify what this neighborhood feels like and we've really tried to preserve that everything we do surrounding neighborhoods. We we have Soho. We have Greenwich Village. The West Village Tribeca. How has the Hudson Square bid impacted those locations? Well I think something interesting interesting is that and I say this is a New Yorker in the old days before two thousand nine if you wanted to walk from Tribeca to Greenwich Village a lot of people when around Hudson Square because it was so uninviting to walk through this what felt like a highway really so I think one of the big things that we've done one is we've helped create continuity between the neighborhoods. We also hope that we're helping people in Soho and in neighborhoods to the east to encourage them. MM to walk east West as well as North South because at the very edge of our boundaries. We have the wonderful Hudson River Park and people feel that a park is closer oeser if getting there is a more pleasant experience so I think that's the real impact that we've had on the surrounding neighborhoods. We call this place making as a new Torres to New York. Which of course I'm not? I mean you could tell by my accent but when a new torres come to New York and they're coming to Hudson Square. What are some of the places that they should visit? There are places for tourists to visit in Hudson Square. There's the very wonderful children's Museum of the arts which is not just a place for tourists but really a place for people from all all over the city who want to find great things to do with their kids. I highly recommend it. There is here arts center which is a place for avangard theater. There's also so the Soho playhouse. which has some wonderful shows? There is the Fire Museum which is a Quirky Little Museum. That is actually run by the Fire Department of the city of New York and has some very interesting nine eleven exhibits there and I guess the best thing that we want people to do when they're here here is really walk around because this is what New York really feels like an issue really cool old bar here isn't there. Oh the Ear Inn is absolutely. It's one of the oldest bars in New York. How old is it? You know it dates back to the early eighteen. Hundreds one thing very cool about the Iranian. I find this very cool. I get all geeked out about stuff like this. If you go outside of if you look at the sidewalk outside the ear inn there is a demarcation. There where New New York Manhattan Island specifically originally ended before we started filling in and grading concrete all the way west of their interestingly when sandy struck the line that the water went up to followed almost exactly that original shoreline of Manhattan pretty cool. That's a very cool fact. That didn't know that that's very interesting. You told us the Disney story. What about the Google story you know? Google all is looking for property everywhere they are very committed to the lower west side of Manhattan. The property here is is walking distance. It's a decent walk but it's walking distance from their other campus and gave them an unparalleled opportunity to really create a a big footprint. The building that they're moving into has very large floor plates and that was something that's really important to them. And a lot of tech companies today in Google typifies this as well as anyone. There's sort of a horizontal culture rather than a vertical culture. They want their people laid out on the same floor. And this this building which the Saint John's terminal which had the largest floor plate of any building in Manhattan. It gives them the opportunity to do that so they were very excited about that. They also saw an opportunity to move in into some lease space. In some of our other buildings they too were attracted to the culture. Like people I guess WanNa be around like people has Amazon knocked on the door. They haven't knocked on my door. Oh well maybe they'll listen to this. And maybe they'll knock on the door. Not to cast any aspersions at Amazon Zahn at all. I have an economic development background so I understand how subsidies go but Google and Disney and everyone else who has come here has come here without any public subsidy. So they're funding the whole thing. That's great they're funding the whole thing and what we're talking about funding. What does it cost the property owners in the area to have have a business improvement district as part of where they're located different bids have different ways of assessing property owners? In our case our budget is three point. Two million dollars a year. That budget is spread out primarily. They're very small completely inconsequential assessments for for residential and for vacant land so the budget is almost completely spread out over commercial square footage. And how much per square foot does that end up being. It varies aries depending on the number of square feet. But it ends up being in the mid twenty cents per square foot. I was going to say twenty dollars wasn't enough and I like to say that I like to say to my building owners you know. We're we're charging you. Twenty six twenty.

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