The latest news on New York architecture.

  • Brooklyn warehouses avoid residential fate

    August 08, 2012 01:30PM   1155-1205 Manhattan Avenue in Greenpoint Nearly all of Brooklyn’s large manufacturers have left the borough, chasing locations with less regulation, and cheaper labor and real estate. Sometimes, the massive warehouses and factories they leave behind are renovated into luxury apartments, as will be the case at the former Domino Sugar factory. But, according to the New York Times, there is a flowering niche manufacturing industry in Brooklyn that is keeping some of these forgotten buildings in their original industrial intent. The scale of the manufacturing in Brooklyn’s industrial buildings has become smaller and more specialized. One building, at 1205 Manhattan Avenue in Greenpoint, has been divided into more than a dozen micro-factories, producing everything from specialty metal and wood pieces to artisanal glass. The small scale gives entrepreneurs an affordable alternative to outsourcing their product’s manufacture, keeping production costs low. “We think this is the future of urban manufacturing,” Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center CEO Brian Coleman, said. “There is a highly skilled work force making products for local consumption.” However these tiny factories are not employing anywhere near the number of New Yorkers the traditional factories employed. In 2011 Brooklyn businesses averaged 11.2 workers per business in 2011. The average in 2000 was 16.8 workers. [NYT] – Christopher Cameron Go to THE REAL DEAL

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  • Penney shines image with Lafayette lease

    Last Updated: 12:24 PM, May 2, 2012 Posted: 11:50 PM, May 1, 2012   Lois Weiss BETWEEN THE BRICKS: EXCLUSIVE JCPenney just got a fair and square deal of its own with a lease for all 130,000 square feet of 200 Lafayette St. at Broome Street. The move is designed to attract a hip workforce and continue the corporate culture shake-up under relatively new CEO and former Apple executive Ron Johnson. “They will build out a spectacular rooftop deck,” said our SoHo spy. The fate of the 11,500-square-foot retail space being marketed by Susan Kurland of CBRE is still under discussion. A CapitalOne branch is in the building, which is otherwise vacant and being renovated. Kurland did not return calls for comment, although she worked on the office deal along with leasing agents David Falk, Jason Greenstein and Daniel Levine of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, who also declined comment through a spokeswoman. The SoHo building was snapped up by Jared Kushner and CIM Group in January for $50 million from John Zaccaro, who was the husband of the late vice presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro. Marketing brochures say the new owners are doling out $30 million more to upgrade every corner of the seven-story building and its numerous arched windows. Kushner and CIM did not return calls for comment, and JCP declined comment via e-mail. While others saw residential condos, Kushner, from his experience with the nearby Puck Building, had an eye on renovating the loft building and renting updated offices to the techies being drawn to Midtown South. Indeed, Falk, who spoke at Bisnow’s Silicon Alley Real Estate Summit yesterday without revealing the tenant, said they were conducting about seven space tours a week before a lease went out for the entire building. Sources said the fully signed 15-year lease took just 45 days to complete and had an asking rent of about $68 a square foot. The net effective rent will be less as Penney will be responsible for all expenses, including property taxes that are running now at about $280,000 a year. Among the companies that kicked the sandy-colored bricks were Restoration Hardware, Facebook, Armani and ad agency Droga5, which has 23,000 square feet at 400 Lafayette St. and is growing rapidly. Penney was headquartered in New York from 1914 until they fled to Dallas in 1987, and sold their 1.5 million square-foot tower at 1301 Sixth Ave. Go to New York Post  

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