On Feb. 27, Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. issued his annual development report ranking the largest projects of the year in the Bronx by dollar value. His latest list includes the usual suspects—a raft of large residential and commercial initiatives—but also one notable outlier: Riverdale Country School. There, work will begin in June on three big construction projects, including a $25 million natatorium with a six-lane, 25-yard-long pool. Make no mistake—with 22 buildings and a total of 300,000 square feet of enclosed space sprawled over 27.5 acres on two campuses one mile apart, the school pays dividends for its immediate area and its borough. And because RCS is one of three schools of similar size in the area—the other two being Fieldston and Horace Mann—the aggregate impact is that much greater. Throw in two small local colleges, Manhattan and Mount St. Vincent, and the neighborhood has a humming private-education dynamo that officials point out is Riverdale's biggest employer. It generates jobs not just for teachers and administrators, but also bus drivers, cooks, landscapers, painters, plumbers and others.
Macy's Inc. announced that it will open its first four bargain stores this fall, in Brooklyn and Queens, and on Long Island. Called Macy’s Backstage, the stores will test the off-price concept here before rolling it out to more locations. The stores, which will each be about 30,000 square feet and staffed by 30 employees, will include unsold clearance items from full-priced stores, as well as exclusives for the outlets from fashion brands.
Wegmans Food Markets Inc. is opening its first location in New York City with a store in Brooklyn. The new store will anchor a $140 million redevelopment of Brooklyn Yard's Admiral's Row that's being led by Steiner NYC. Several buildings will be knocked down and replaced with Wegmans, other stores, industrial space and parking. Steiner NYC, creator of the Navy Yard’s 25-acre film studio, will develop the complex, set to open in 2017. The 74,000-square-foot store at the Navy Yard will be the company’s smallest by about 25 percent. The Navy Yard selected Steiner and Wegmans above three other proposals because of the affordability of the store’s offerings and its commitment to hiring locally for full-time jobs. Because of its emphasis on prepared foods, the company offered to create at least twice as many full-time jobs (200), and more total jobs (600) than any of the rivals. In its first two weeks of hiring, the store will interview exclusively from the three housing projects that border the Navy Yard. Across a large parking lot will be the supermarket, part of a larger building with 126,000 square feet of industrial space.
Gateway National Recreation Area, part of the Park Service, has signed a five-year lease with Brooklyn Night Bazaar, which has attracted thousands to its weekly food and entertainment events in Greenpoint. Starting Memorial Day weekend, the company, under the name Riis Park Beach Bazaar, will stage free outdoor concerts at Jacob Riis on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. In addition, it will offer food concessions in two of the large bays that run the length of the brick bathhouse, as well as smaller food carts on the boardwalk. Among the food vendors expected to participate are Ample Hills Creamery, the Brooklyn Star, Court Street Grocers, Wild Feast Foods, Fletcher’s Brooklyn Barbecue and La Newyorkina.
New York County
Yodle's, a company that specializes in providing online marketing solutions to small business, is about to move into its news space near Penn Station. And as it more than doubles its office size, the online marketing company is also planning to nearly double its head count. The 10-year-old firm will add 250 hires to its current 300-person staff over the next three years, the startup announced at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its 114,000-square-foot headquarters on West 34th Street. The new hires will be in all areas, but with a concentration in software and product development.
Zaro’s Bakery plans to open two locations at the transit hub this summer, the local chain announced Wednesday. Zaro’s will operate both a 400-square-foot shop and a 200-square-foot kiosk at the Fulton Center. The bakery has 11 other locations in the New York metro area. The closest outposts to lower Manhattan are at Penn Station.
The partners behind the Tao Group restaurant and nightclub empire — Marc Packer, Richard Wolf, Noah Tepperberg and Jason Strauss — are extending their hospitality to hotels. A new 23-story hotel on 414 W. 15th St. in the Meatpacking District will be the first-ever Tao-branded hotel. Rockpoint Group and Highgate Holdings have been developing the vacant lot and expect to complete it in the summer of 2016. CetraRuddy is the architectural company for the hotel that will rise to 278 feet and include a huge rooftop lounge for up to 240 people, a 23rd floor lounge for the same number, as well as another lounge and terrace on the second floor, city permits show.
NYU Langone Medical Center plans to open a two-story, 45,000-square-foot multispecialty ambulatory care facility in Long Island City. The new location is accessible via four subway lines within two blocks and will be complete in 12 to 18 months.
Detroit-based watchmaker Shinola is opening a store in Brooklyn on the Dumbo waterfront. The company is taking 5,000 square feet of space at Empire Stores, a former coffee warehouse that is in the process of being converted into an office building with ground-floor retail space. The new location will be Shinola’s second in the city and its first in Brooklyn. The company has a store on Franklin Street in TriBeCa. Like that location, the new one will feature a cafe operated by The Smile.
New York County
Anheuser-Busch InBev seeks to fill around 50 positions in its new marketing and sales office. This is part of an aggressive recruitment effort aimed at attracting top talent to the office, which will soon open in Chelsea on West 24th Street between Sixth and Seventh avenues. The location will eventually house some 250 sales and marketing professionals, including many who will transfer from the brewer's U.S. headquarters in St. Louis. Plans include a beer garden on the ground floor that will be open to the public. The move marks a significant cultural change for the company, whose U.S. operations have long been run from St. Louis (where it was founded in 1852), even after Anheuser-Busch's acquisition in 2008 by InBev, which is based in São Paolo. While AB InBev will keep its U.S. headquarters in St. Louis, the U.S. "commercial strategy" office in New York is meant to provide it exposure to urban trends, according to an internal memo sent late last year when the decision was made. The move also gets marketing executives closer to key partners based here, including ad agencies, sports leagues and music and entertainment execs. And it provides for greater proximity to the brewer's global office, which opened in New York at 250 Park Ave. in 2009. The city's attractive talent pool is a key part of the relocation equation.
A new dumpling chain is opening a location on Hudson Street. Dumpling Go opened on West Third Street in Greenwich Village earlier this year and at 188 Second Avenue in the East Village earlier this month. Dumpling Go's website lists a fourth incoming location as well, coming to 350 Third Ave at 26th Street.
The Japanese retailer Uniqlo is opening its first Queens outpost this spring at The Shops at Skyview Center. The brand — which has stores in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Staten Island including a flagship shop on Fifth Avenue — signed a deal on a 8,000-square-foot space and should open in the next few weeks, according to a spokeswoman for the Flushing mall. Uniqlo is known for its well-made basics and graphic T-shirts. The 700,000-square-foot mall is also home to a Nordstrom Rack, Forever 21, Restoration Hardware and Nike Clearance Store, as also has restaurants and a supermarket.
Applebee's, Gap and White House Black Market inked leases to spaces in Empire Outlets, a new mall that's breaking ground on Thursday. The mall — slated to open in 2016 — announced 100,000 square-feet of new leases on Tuesday. The latest tenants will join H&M and Nordstrom Rack which previously took space. Other stores headed to the mall include Banana Republic Factory Store, Columbia Sportswear Company, Guess Factory Store, Wilsons Leather, G.H. Bass & Co., Lids, Obey Your Body, Innovation Luggage, Walgreens, Haagen Daz, Krispy Kreme and Nathan’s Famous.
The city will invest $150 million over 12 years to revitalize and fortify the Bronx's Hunts Point Market, the world's largest food distribution center, through which 60% of the city's food supply flows. City-funded infrastructure improvements had been anticipated after the market cooperative signed a new lease last year as it was being wooed by New Jersey. The money will go toward modernizing the market's buildings and infrastructure as well as opening up space for new businesses. The city is already working with the nearby Fulton Fish Market, which is the second-largest fresh-seafood market in the world, to put underutilized space to better use by making room for complementary food processing and manufacturing. The money will also be put toward parking lot repairs at the fish market, fixing long-delayed maintenance items, urgent short-term repairs at the Meat Market, and rail infrastructure along Food Center Drive. The city will also clean up a brownfield site to create a development parcel for new industrial uses, such as a food processing or manufacturing facility. The $150 million investment will be in addition to another pot of money for the market from the city and federal governments.
Furniture and home-decor retailer Design Within Reach has signed a lease to open a 40,000-square-foot outlet store and repair facility at the Industry City complex in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. It will also include a design studio and showroom. It is expected to be fully operational in late spring and will bring 25 jobs to the waterfront site. In addition to traditional shopping, Design Within Reach will offer design workshops and programming for home-furnishing designers and manufacturers.
New York County
A Bloomingdale's for price-conscious consumers is coming to the Upper West Side. The northwest corner of Broadway and W. 72nd St. will be home to a new Bloomingdale’s Outlet store this fall that will offer a range of “off-price” merchandise targeted to shoppers watching their budgets. The new outlet, slated to open at 2085 Broadway in time for the holiday season, will be Bloomingdale’s 14th and the first in an urban area.
The original Airport City concept (an airport integrated economic region) facilitated by Greater Jamaica Development Corp. (GJDC) surrounding JFK's AirTrain Station in Downtown Jamaica is poised for takeoff. The drivers for the revitalization of Jamaica's Airport City or Village are two private investments; a 26-story, 240 room Hilton Garden Inn and a 100,000 s/f mixed-use retail and residential development. Both projects, due to break ground in 2015, are located directly across the street from the AirTrain/LIRR/Subway transit hub with a combined investment value of $279 million. Supporting the redevelopment is a variety of public improvements. GJDC, in coordination with NYC Economic Development Corp. and city, state and federal agencies, has been working on over $90 million of infrastructure projects.
Chicago-based General Growth Properties has announced a multimillion-dollar redevelopment of its 1.2-million-square-foot Staten Island Mall in New Springville that will add 1,300 new jobs to Staen Islands employment pool. Construction on the project, which will include interior and exterior upgrades, new fashion retailers, restaurants, a cinema, public piazza and a Fairway Market, is expected to commence following necessary city approvals. Construction is expected to be complete by 2017.
Simone Development Companies will build a 1.9-million square foot mixed-use office, academic and medical complex on a 33-acre site at 1500 Waters Place, a parcel in the east Bronx. The state-owned site, next to Simone’s Hutchinson Metro Center development, currently houses the Bronx Psychiatric Center of the state’s Office of Mental Health. OMH plans to downsize to a newly built 43-acre campus south of the Waters Place parcel. The $16 million deal, which is subject to a diligence period and public approval process, is expected to create 1,900 construction jobs and several thousand permanent jobs. Much of the development will comprise of office space for healthcare tenants, as well as other businesses and government agencies, similar to the Hutch Metro Center. Plans for the site also include a retail plaza, a 150-room hotel, and space for higher education—although agreements with tenants have not been finalized.
Jewelry maker Alexis Bittar is expanding into what increasingly is becoming one of the city’s most popular destinations for fashion and manufacturing companies. The Dumbo-based firm is taking about 17,000 square feet at the sprawling former warehouse complex, Industry City, along the waterfront in Brooklyn's Sunset Park. The space will become the main manufacturing facility for the company's jewelry line. Alexis Bittar had previously fabricated its collection in Dumbo. The company will keep its 16,000-square-foot corporate office, with its sales, marketing and executive staff, at that 45 Main St. location. Its manufacturing space will greatly expand at Industry City. The company is at least the second jewelry maker to go to the complex. In September, BaubleBar signed a deal to take a nearly 53,000-square-foot space at Industry City to use as a distribution center for shipping its jewelry to customers. Industry City has drawn businesses that have fed off of Brooklyn’s thriving culture of artisanal and locally made goods, and that hope to transition to a grander scale while still staying plugged into the borough’s trendiness and ecosystem of creative businesses
OSP Group has signed a 15-year lease to move its headquarters to One New York Plaza, a 2.5 million-square-foot tower at the foot of lower Manhattan that is owned by Brookfield Office Properties Inc. The retailer—whose products include women’s apparel, shoes and lingerie—is consolidating offices from two Midtown buildings into 156,000 square feet in One New York Plaza. OSP Group currently is in about 150,000 square feet at 462 and 463 Seventh Ave. The company is receiving a $1.8 million grant from the Empire State Development and New York City Economic Development Corp., linked to creating 150 new jobs. OSP will invest $20 million to consolidate the two offices.
A luxury hotel in Queens will rise after the project cleared its last legal hurdle. Plans to build the Hilton Garden Inn in downtown Jamaica were blocked by a legal battle between the Greater Jamaica Development Corp. and Robin Eshaghpour, who owned a portion of the property. Even though Eshaghpour had sold the property, he tried to hold onto a 99-year lease he had for the site. Supreme Court Judge Duane Hart ruled Eshaghpour had to accept the $444,000 payment for his remaining interest in the property, paving the way for Greater Jamaica to sell the land to developer Able Management Group. The 240-room hotel will rise 24 stories across from the Air Train on Sutphin Blvd. — a 10-minute ride to JFK Airport and a 22-minute commute to midtown Manhattan via the Long Island Rail Road
Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. has signed a lease to take more than 100,000 square feet at Liberty View Industrial Plaza, a technology and industrial complex in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Sunset Park. The home-furnishings retailer plans to place four of its stores on the building’s second floor: Bed Bath & Beyond; buybuy BABY; Cost Plus World Market; and Harmon Face Values. The lease will run for 15 years with options for additional years and the stores are slated to open in November 2015
A City-financed innovation hub is set to open at the Liberty View Industrial Plaza in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park section. The Manufacturing Innovation Hub for Apparel, Textiles & Wearable Tech is financed by a $3.5 million grant that was recently announced by the New York City Economic Development Corp. (NYCEDC). Another $4.5 million is available through NYCEDC’s Industrial Modernization Initiative, the city’s effort to foster the industrial sector by modernizing and subdividing industrial space across the five boroughs. The funds will be used to complete the fit-out, upgrades and spaces subdivision of the new fashion innovation hub. The project is slated to occupy 160,000 square feet of space, of which 110,000 square feet will be dedicated to active manufacturing. The space will house around 30 businesses and up to 50 fashion designers and is expected to create or retain about 300 full-time jobs.
Amazon.com Inc. is getting $5 million in tax credits from New York state to bring 500 jobs to a property across the street from the Empire State Building. The online retailer is opening an office at 7 W. 34th St. in the Herald Square shopping district. The credits will come from the state's Excelsior Jobs Program.
New York's chief economic development agency has entered an agreement with Buzzfeed that gives the company $4 million in tax credits to promote the creation and retention of in-state jobs, the agency said in a statement. The announcement comes on the heels of news that Buzzfeed has signed one of the year's biggest leases in Midtown South, which has increasingly become a focal point for the city's tech and creative industries. The deal helped seal a commitment from Buzzfeed to stay in New York after it had considered several other locations around the country. Buzzfeed confirmed it had looked at other cities but declined to name them or discuss the details of their search. The digital media powerhouse moves from its current offices at 200 Fifth Avenue into 200,000 square feet on the 11th through 16th floors of 225 Park Ave. South next year. The $4 million granted by the Empire State Development Corp. comes out of New York's Excelsior Jobs Program, which was originally signed into law in 2010 and offers tax credits to cover a portion of the payroll costs at companies in booming industries. It is intended to offset the expenses Buzzfeed incurs for agreeing to create 475 new jobs over five years and to retain Buzzfeed's current New York workforce of more than 450 employees.
An arm of developer Forest City Ratner Cos. will buy its partner's stake in the Brooklyn Navy Yard modular-construction facility that had produced units for the former Atlantic Yards residential project. That process ended late this summer when a lawsuit between the two parties brought operations to a standstill. The firm has already reached out to the more than 150 workers who were furloughed as a result of the factory closure, and will begin a ramping-up process to bring the factory back online.
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. may have scrapped plans to build a new headquarters on Manhattan’s far West Side, but the bank still will have a presence in the neighborhood with its digital group. It signed a 10-year lease deal for about 123,000 square feet on the ninth floor of 450 W. 33rd St., a 16-story building that is part of Brookfield Property Partners LP’s planned Manhattan West development, said Jeremiah Larkin, Brookfield executive vice president and director of leasing for New York and Boston. The bank plans to consolidate its digital teams in the tri-state area into this location and use the new office as a recruiting tool. The neighborhood is viewed as an emerging tech corridor. Brookfield is spending about $200 million to make over the 1.7 million-square-foot tower with a new pleated-glass exterior, interior renovations and new mechanical systems. For Brookfield, the lease is another step toward realizing the rest of its Manhattan West project, which includes the construction of two office towers, a residential high-rise building and a hotel.
The hotel boom in the South Bronx is showing no signs of slowing down. A Queens-based developer has filed plans with the city to construct a nine-story hotel with 94 rooms on East 147th St. in east Mott Haven. Additionally, a 12-story hotel is already under construction on Exterior St. and E. 146th St., and a Comfort Inn is beginning to rise on 135th St. and Third Ave. In September, plans for a 75-room luxury hotel on the Grand Concourse near 140th St. were filed with the city. And in Pelham Bay, a 125-room Residence Inn by Marriott at the Hutchinson Metro Center is scheduled to open in early 2015.
Spreemo, a cloud-based health care platform based in Hoboken, announced that it will be moving to 88 Pine St. in lower Manhattan early next year. Spreemo, which has doubled its headcount to 40 over the past year, will move into a 7,500 square-foot space in the 32-story tower. The decision to move was made easier by $600,000 in tax credits provided by New York's Empire State Development Corp. The credits are contingent on Spreemo creating 95 jobs over 10 years.
Snapchat, the app that allows users send messages that delete themselves after a few seconds, is opening an office near Times Square. Snapchat is taking the 16-story, 750,000-square-foot tower's entire 15th and 16th floors. Earlier this year, the app outfit was valued at as much as $10 billion.
Lowe's, the home improvement chain, is planning to open two stores in Manhattan in the second half of 2015, its first ever in the borough. Among other things, the new Lowe's outposts will offer home organization and storage products for customers used to living in small apartments. Both its locations will be around 30,000 square feet in size. Combined, the stores will create 125 jobs.
Fika, the Swedish coffee chain, is gaining a new reputation: that of the fastest-growing café in the city. It has opened seven stores in Manhattan since February for a total of 12, and it's about to open three more in November. The largest of the cafés is at 824 10th Ave. The bilevel, 5,000-square-foot eatery will have a café, open bakery, catering kitchen and event space. A 12th Fika is opening in October at 555 Sixth Ave. Fika hopes to open as many as 25 restaurants in New York City.
Bed Bath & Beyond and WeWork have each signed leases for 30,000 square feet at 5 West 125th Street in Harlem, a project under development between Fifth and Lenox Avenues. Both leases mark the tenants’ first locations in Harlem. The tenants will occupy their respective spaces by the third quarter of 2015. A 130,000-square-foot building is expected to be completed at the site in fall 2015. It will include 30 residential rental units over commercial space. The home superstore will be located on the second floor of the development, while the co-working company will occupy the third floor.
Cadillac, long the king of Detroit's auto brands, is abandoning Motown. General Motors Co. said on Tuesday that its struggling luxury brand will move 50 key employees and its headquarters to New York next year amid a wider effort to carve Cadillac out as a stand-alone business unit with more autonomy. Long run from Detroit, GM's brass feels being in Manhattan will help Cadillac better reach luxury buyers.
Big-box buying comes to Bensonhurst. BJ’s Wholesale Club opened its Bensonhurst store quietly on Sept. 13. The grand opening followed week later, but residents eager to buy provisions by the pallet took to the Shore Parkway store in droves ahead of the formal ribbon cutting. The 1752 Shore Parkway location is the third BJ’s to open in Brooklyn — the other two are in Canarsie and East New York. The store employs 250 workers — 210 of whom live in Brooklyn.
Luxury retailer Neiman Marcus will make its New York City debut as the retail centerpiece of the Hudson Yards venture, a flashy step forward in the developers' drive to create a mini-city on Manhattan's far West Side. The news Wednesday that Neiman had agreed to lease terms ignited a flurry of contacts from retailers interested in the seven-story retail project being built by Related Cos. and Oxford Properties Group, the developers said. The flagship store will occupy 250,000 square feet on the top three levels of the building. Developers intend to use the Neiman Marcus brand in part to entice consumers up successive levels of the complex near 10th Avenue and West 30th Street. The 1-million-square-foot complex will be sprinkled with restaurants and have an entrance on its fourth level to an observation deck planned for a tower on the 28-acre site. The Neiman Marcus store is expected to open in 2018
The Bronx is gaining hundreds of new hotel rooms. The Empire Hotel Group, opened the Opera House hotel on 149th St. last December. A sleek new 56-room tower in Melrose, dubbed the Umbrella Hotel, is set to start taking reservations by the end of the September. And plans were filed to build a 75-room luxury hotel on the Grand Concourse and 140th St., according to the office of borough president Ruben Diaz Jr. A 12-story hotel is already under construction on nearby Exterior St. and E. 146th St., and work has begun on a Comfort Inn on 135th St. and Third Ave. Some big names are being drawn to the borough as well. A 125-room Residence Inn by Marriott is currently under construction at the Hutchinson Metro Center in Pelham Bay. The seven-story extended-stay hotel will occupy the upper tier of a new 300,000-square-foot building at the heart of the sprawling 42-acre complex. Many of the hotels in the Mott Haven and Melrose areas are located near transit hubs that offer visitors quick commutes to traditional tourist destinations in Manhattan.
A new livery service for women that was supposed to start operating on 9/16/2014 in New York City, in Westchester County and on Long Island has been delayed until later this month to allow the company to recruit more female drivers. Tamika D. Mallory, the company spokeswoman, said more than 100 women had signed up to drive cars for the service. But she added that the company, which is expecting to receive hundreds if not thousands of requests every day, had decided to line up 500 female drivers before it began operating to avoid any delays for potential riders. SheTaxis — known as SheRides in the city’s five boroughs — will instead start its website and begin holding what it calls “opportunity fairs” at its office in Long Island City, Queens, to encourage more drivers, both women and men, to join the livery industry. SheTaxis will operate through a smartphone app to connect female livery drivers sporting pink pashmina scarves with female riders.
MediaMath Inc. will be moving its headquarters downtown to 4 World Trade Center. The global technology firm has signed a 15-year lease with Silverstein Properties Inc. for 106,000 square feet. Early next year, MediaMath will consolidate more than 300 employees at 4 WTC from three existing Midtown offices. The 450-employee technology company projects it will add 200 jobs this year and create some 1,000 new jobs in the city over the next five years. MediaMath considered other locations in New York and New Jersey. An incentive package, including a $5.8 million a federally funded Job Creation and Retention Program grant jointly offered by Empire State Development and New York City Economic Development, was a major factor in keeping the company in New York City. obility for its workforce." MediaMedia, which was founded in the city in 2007, was the first to introduce demand-side platform, a digital-advertising management system.
H&M opened its new Fifth Avenue flagship store on July 17th. The largest outlet for the company in the city, the store will house each and every one of H&M's product categories, including the home goods collection, the first H&M store in the United States to do so.
Vice Media, the online-content company that has grown into an international symbol of hipness along with its home base of Williamsburg, is doubling the size of its presence in the Brooklyn neighborhood. The company's move to a 60,000-square-foot former industrial building at South Second Street and Kent Avenue will allow it to add 525 employees to its 400 who now work in Williamsburg, where it is one of the largest tech and creative employers. Three-quarters of its workers live in the neighborhood, the company said. Founded in 1994 in Montreal as a punk magazine, Vice moved to Brooklyn in 1999 and has been in Williamsburg since 2001. Since then, it gradually has consumed much of the space on its side of the block. This year alone, Vice has moved into a former bus depot and the former Beacon's Closet thrift store space. It now occupies 30,000 square feet of space. The company, run by co-founders Shane Smith and Suroosh Alvi, is set to receive $6.5 million in state tax incentives if it meets its jobs target.
Bank of New York Mellon, in a move that boosts the already-improving fortunes of Lower Manhattan, has decided to move its headquarters to Brookfield Place downtown. The deal is for about 350,000 square feet at 225 Liberty St., the former 2 World Financial Center. The agreement, confirmed by several industry sources plugged into the deal, definitively ends a saga that began when BNY Mellon announced last year it would put its landmarked tower at 1 Wall Street up for sale. BNY was negotiating both for the Brookfield tower and also for a building in Jersey City. While the smart money was on the bank staying in Manhattan, it was never a sure thing. Its decision is good news both for Brookfield, which is rapidly refilling space left behind by Merrill Lynch, and for downtown as a whole.
Queens is leading the outer boroughs in new hotel development, spurred by one of its hottest neighborhoods, Long Island City, which has become a magnet for nearly every prominent hotel brand. Queens added about 500 rooms this year through mid-April, or 9% more than the same period last year, according to STR, a research firm that tracks hotel data. The majority of hotels in Queens are clustered around LaGuardia and JFK, but the significant growth is occurring outside the airport markets. Of the 50 properties currently under construction in the city, 46% are being built outside Manhattan, with 10 in Queens, nine in Brooklyn, three in the Bronx and one in Staten Island, according to NYC & Company, the city's tourism bureau. In Long Island City, the hotel boom has been especially pronounced. There are 23 properties with 2,008 rooms and another eight under construction, including two Wyndham properties and an Aloft by Starwood Hotels & Resorts. The demand is buoyed, in part, by some of the large employers based in the neighborhood, such as JetBlue, Citibank and MetLife, but also by intrepid overseas travelers, many of whom are repeat visitors to the city. The Ravel Hotel in 2008, a boutique property at the foot of the Queensboro Bridge. is adding to its waterside property, building a 10-story tower that will have 48 rooms, a rooftop pool, event spaces and a third-floor garden. Another stylish boutique hotel, the Paper Factory—in a former industrial building—opened earlier this year in Long Island City. Other areas of Queens are adding hotels to their landscape. A 96-room Parc Hotel opened recently in Flushing, which is mainly attracting day-trippers and travelers from Asia. That's reflected in how the hotels are marketed. The Parc Hotel's front sign, for example, is prominently displayed in English and Chinese. The airport hotel market hasn't changed much in recent years, with a few exceptions: The 350-room Crowne Plaza JFK opened earlier this year. It had originally been a Hilton before falling into disrepair.
The first beneficiaries of the governor's START-UP NY program are heavily concentrated upstate, but two will be moving into incubator space owned by SUNY Downstate—where they will enjoy a completely tax-free existence for 10 years. Americord Registry, a cord-blood bank, and Modern Meadow, a synthetic meat cultivator, were chosen as part of the START-UP NY initiative launched last fall by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Americord Registry, a six-year-old company, will be moving more of its operations to Brooklyn in the coming months. The company collects and stores stem cells from umbilical cord blood for future medical use, such as treating leukemia or lymphoma—cases in which a bone marrow donor could be hard to find. The company currently contracts with a lab in Indianapolis to process collected cord blood, said chief executive Marty Smith-Myer. "We probably wouldn't be doing this expansion if it weren't for this program," he said. Mr. Smith-Myer aims to open a lab inside the biotech incubator on SUNY Downstate's campus by October, and plans to hire about 10 employees to work there. Modern Meadow, which grows synthetic meat and leather products, will be moving to New York from Columbia, Mo., where the company was founded. The company will move into the BioBAT incubator operated by SUNY Downstate at the Brooklyn Army Terminal in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. The company's founder, Andres Fogacs, previously said he was relocating to be closer to New York's restaurant and fashion industries. Modern Meadow will invest $6.5 million into the move; Americord Registry will invest more than $402,000. The SUNY Downstate Medical Center acted as a sponsor for the two startups, vetting their business and financing plans and helping them apply to the state program. The university broke ground in May 2014 on an expansion for its biotech incubator, located next to its central Brooklyn campus, which will double the facility's available space. For the university, proximity to biotech companies means more job opportunities for students—an important factor at a time when jobs in academia are scarce.
The developer behind the Condor Hotel in South Williamsburg is building another hotel near the Wythe Hotel, the successful pioneer of what now has blossomed into a string of hotel projects in the neighborhood. Developer Zelig Weiss has acquired 121 N. 12th St., a parcel that fills the entire block front between North 12th and North 13th streets along Wythe Avenue. Mr. Weiss just closed on an $18.35 million loan from Madison Realty Capital. A 320,000-square-foot hotel can be erected there with about 180 rooms. The new hotel, to be called the Level Hotel, is one of several that is being built in North Williamsburg along Wythe Avenue, where commercial zoning prevents the wave of residential development that has overtaken much of the rest of the neighborhood. Heritage Equity Partners, for instance, is also building a 150-room hotel around the block from the Wythe.
Tech darling Etsy is expanding in Brooklyn. The online marketplace for web-savvy artisans has signed on as the anchor tenant for the new DUMBO Heights project underway in the former Watchtower buildings. The 9-year-old company, which already has headquarters in the neighborhood, plans to nearly double its workforce with 300 new jobs in the next five years. The move to the new 200,000-square-foot space at 117 Adams St. is scheduled for 2016. Etsy is expected to join a host of tech and creative companies in the former Jehovah’s Witnesses’ stronghold. Five buildings, connected by skyways, have been rebranded Dumbo Heights, a tech-friendly campus in the midst of Brooklyn's Tech Triangle.
Smartling, a cloud-based, one-stop shop for the translation needs of global companies, like Sony, Spotify and Nokia, has raised $25 million in a Series D round that will be used to increase market share as it looks ahead at an IPO. Founded in 2009, Smartling raised $24 million in a Series C round in October, and spent very little of it, according to founder and CEO Jack Welde. The latest addition to the company war chest provides "an opportunity to be a little more aggressive and take more" of the $35 billion online translation market, he said in an interview. That means possible acquisitions and more hiring in sales and marketing as the company leaves lower Park Avenue for 22,000 square feet at 1375 Broadway, at West 37th Street, in June. Smartling currently has 70 employees in New York. In its new quarters it will have room for 200—a number Mr. Welde expects to reach within a year and a half.
Work is starting on the hotel that will be Shakespeare's next-door neighbor. The city Buildings Department issued a demolition permit in late April for the small commercial building at 95 Rockwell Place – which will be mostly torn down and replaced with a high-end boutique hotel designed by high-profile architect Thomas Leeser. After the demolition, “rubble walls” on the sides of the building will be left standing, said Steve Pfister of Second Development Services (SDS), one of the firms partnering on the hotel. City Finance Department records indicate it will be a Marriott Autograph Collection property. It will be directly adjacent to the Shakespeare-centric Theatre for a New Audience, which opened in November to wide acclaim – and three blocks away from Barclays Center.
The 3-D printing pioneer MakerBot is downsizing. The Brooklyn-based company recently laid off staff and closed its three retail stores, including a flagship in the Nolita neighborhood. A company spokesman declined to comment on specifics, but a report by a tech blog called Motherboard estimated that about 100 employees, or 20% of MakerBot's staff, were given pink slips.
Catholic Charities Neighborhood Services, a division of the larger Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens social services organization, said its programs for the developmentally disabled have lost the agency $13 million since 2010. It's now looking for other agencies to take over 24 of its residences and day programs by August. CCNS was losing $400,000 a month delivering services to 203 people with developmental disabilities. The closures will result in 719 layoffs, 198 of whom are substitutes for staff, at the 2,047-employee nonprofit. Those affected include health care workers such as registered nurses, psychologists, therapists and occupational therapists, and support staff, including maintenance workers, housekeepers and cooks. Some of these employees are represented by District Council 1707 and United Food and Commercial Workers Local 888.
The publisher of The American Lawyer and other publications, which changed hands last year after repeatedly downsizing, is about to lay off 61 employees. ALM Media will make the cuts in phases from the end of July through September. In an emailed statement, ALM CEO Bill Carter said the planned layoffs were part of the company's evolution from a "publisher of legal titles to a leading provider of information and data solutions ... serving multiple industry verticals. Having grown through several strategic acquisitions, we have looked to streamline our operations to take advantage of the synergies of our newly integrated businesses.” Based in Manhattan, ALM was acquired—actually, reacquired—last July by private-equity firm Wasserstein & Co. from Apax Partners for $417 million. ALM also publishes The National Law Journal, New York Law Journal and more than 300 other print and digital properties. In January, the company furthered its expansion into new industries with the acquisition of Summit Professional Networks, a trade publisher for the insurance industry.
In anticipation of a deal to spin off the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University posted a notice of mass layoffs. The WARN notice covers 1,512 employees who may lose their Yeshiva jobs on June 30. The affected unions are 1199 SEIU Healthcare Workers East, the New York State Nurses Association and APTA. Most qualified Einstein employees are expected to be offered positions at either the new entity or Montefiore.
The Streit's matzoh factory, the oldest such bakery in the U.S., is planning to shut down its 9-decade-old ovens by year's end and move to a 21st-century computerized plant somewhere in the New York area. The contract has yet to be signed. All employees will be offered jobs at the new location.
Junior's to move baking operation from Queens factory to New Jersey. The restaurant needs to move out if its Maspeth factory because the owners sold the 20,000-square-foot space. The four companies it operates in the factory will move from 58-42 Maurice Ave. to a new location in Burlington, New Jersey by July. Four subsidiaries, Vanilla Fudge, LLC; Sweet Dream Desserts, LLC; Great American Dessert Company LLC; and GAD Bakeries operated out the factory for last 15 years. The new factory will be five times the size of the Queens location and the staff will move their operations to New Jersey in the next few months. A filing with the state's Department of Labor said the companies employed a combined 75 people. The company hopes to transfer as many of the employees to the new facility as possible.
Metro Cable Communications will lay of 226 workers by 4/15/2015. The workers are represented by International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 3.
Cache Inc, which is in bankruptcy, laid off 103 workers effective 3/18/2015.
Morris Okun, a Hunts Point-based food distributor, announced the sale of its site to Katzman Produce. 115 workers were notified of possible layoff by 6/12/2015. The workers are members of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters or the Office & Professional Employees International.
DAL Global Services lost a contract to provide airline cabin cleaning and baggage handling services for Delta Airlines at JFK Intl airport. All 621 DAL employees were notified of possible layoff as of 6/1/2015. Air Serv Corp is the new contractor.
Air Serv Corp lost a contract to provide cabin services for Delta Airlines at LaGuardia Airport. 178 employees were notified of possible layoff by 6/1/2015. Gates Aviation is the new contractor.
The Mondrian Soho Hotel is facing possible foreclosure. The current owners are trying to sell the hotel. The Hotel’s 201 staff members were notified of possible layoff effective 5/28/2015. The workers are represented by the New York Hotel & Motel Trades Council.
Two years after opening its lower-priced casual line, Kate Spade Saturday, the high-end retailer Kate Spade & Co said it will close it down. That means that all 19 shops, including a 3,000-square-foot store at 152 Spring St., in the heart of SoHo, will be shuttered by July. The Spring Street store was open for less than 18 months, following innovative digital displays that operated as stores. The company also said it is shuttering the retail outposts of its Jack Spade men’s brand—a move that will put two more prime retail spaces on the market downtown. By the second half of the year, space at 400 Bleecker St. and 56 Greene St. will be up for grabs.
GL Bus Lines, operator of Gray Line tour buses, announced plans to permanently lay off 149 workerss effective 3/12/2015. The company is currently in negotiation with the union representing it's workers.
Jones Apparel filed plans to lay off 229 workers between 1/28/2015 and 7/31/2015 as part of a previously announced restructuring.
Following the surprise announcemment of unexpected financial losses, Federation Employment and Guidance Services (FEGS) will cease a variety of programs run under contract with the City of New York and lay off more than 850 workers effective 4/20/2015.
Century Direct , a Long Island City-based printing firm, will invest $4.21 million in acquiring two, 85,000 square-foot properties in Islandia (Suffolk County) to house the company’s manufacturing operations. The $1.16 million renovation will allow the company to add 135 new jobs, and move its existing 177 employees to the Town of Islip-based properties from Queens. Century Direct plans to open the new facility in March 2015. Aiding Century Direct with the relocation and expansion are tax breaks from the Islip Industrial Development Agency
Reiko Wireless, a manufacturer and distributor of cellphone accessories that’s relocating from Brooklyn, will make a 130,000-square-foot former state distribution center on 13 acres in Central Islip (Suffolk County) its national headquarters. Reiko is moving to Long Island with the help of economic incentives from the Town of Islip Industrial Development Agency and discounted power from PSEG. The company is bringing 90 employees to its new location and has pledged to add 30 more in the next three years. Reiko will spend an additional $2 million on renovations and equipment for the Central Islip complex. Reiko plans to move in by the spring of 2015.
The retailer dELIA’s, which focuses mostly on teenage girls, is going to sell off all of the merchandise it owns and anticipates filing for Ch. 11 bankruptcy protection "in the very near term." The chain said Friday that it decided to take such action after being unable to find a merger partner, or get an acquisition or financing proposal enabling it to remain a going-concern.
iQor, a global outsourcing company , will relocate its headquarters to St. Petersburg, Florida. More than 100 employees of iQor U.S. are expected to move into three floors at the Tower at One Progress Plaza, 200 Central Ave., in January 2015.
MetLife, the world’s biggest insurance company, is looking to send more of its workforce from the New York metro area to less expensive locations in North Carolina. The total number of jobs to be relocated may be as high as 6,000. According to the company filings, it currently has approximately 2,600 workers in North Carolina and the state has offered the company tax breaks that could reach $87.2 million over 12 years. The plans largely hit back-office IT employees, many of them based in New York and New Jersey, although New York City impact is not yet clear.
RBC Capital Markets indicated that over 900 jobs will be transferred from Manhattan to Jersey City, NJ by January 2015. All the affected employees will be offered transfers. Back in May 2014 the company announced receipt of a major incentive package from NJ that committed them to create at least 900 jobs in Jersey City.
Windmill Distributing, a beer and spirits wholesaler, announced 577 layoffs – 159 in Orange County and the balance in Brooklyn - effective 1/15/2015 because they are merging with Manhattan Beer.
Montefiore Medical Center is laying off approximately 200 people from three mental health treatment centers affiliated with the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. The layoff will commence during the first week of January 2015 and is expected to take about two weeks.
After eliminating 570 positions a year ago and another 775 positions in April, the Visiting Nurse Service of New York hired consulting firm Alvarez & Marsal in July to restructure its operations. Now the company has laid off nearly 170 more people, and sources say VNSNY Choice Health Plans is for sale.
The Food Emporium supermarket chain is shrinking. Two of the 13 stores in the city are closing within the next several months and more may follow. In early December, the Food Emporium at 1211 Madison Ave. and East 87th Street will be replaced by a Morton Williams store. In January, the Kips Bay Food Emporium at 200 E. 32nd St. will close. The Food Emporium in Kips Bay has reportedly been squeezed by the Fairway Market that moved into the neighborhood in December 2012. According to the WARN notice file with the NYS Department of Labor 60 employees will be affected by the closure. The East 87th Street store will be renovated over the next several months, but will not close to the public.
The Holiday Inn SoHo on Lafayette Street will close in January 2015 for a massive renovation lasting about a year. According to published reports new owner RFR Holdings will transform the property into a swanky boutique hotel like some of the others it owns, including Gramercy Park Hotel, the Paramount Hotel and the W South Beach. Some 74 employees at the Holiday Inn SoHo will be laid off starting Jan. 5.
New York Times Co. plans to cut jobs across the company, including about 100 positions in the newsroom, to help boost long-term profitability as digital businesses have struggled to make up for the declines in print. The publisher disclosed plans for the buyouts and layoffs in a regulatory filing 10/01/2014, saying the reductions “are necessary to control our costs and to allow us to continue to invest in the digital future of The New York Times.” In a memo to the newsroom, Executive Editor Dean Baquet said there will be forced layoffs if 100 newsroom jobs can’t be eliminated through voluntary buyouts. A smaller number of positions will be reduced on the business side.
The InterContinental New York Barclay closed its doors 09/27/2014 for a $175 million renovation that started just before the busy fall and holiday season in New York. In fact, the 685-room property would likely have been sold out this week while the United Nations General Assembly is in session. The closure affects 447 employees, who are members of the New York Hotel & Motel Trades Council and were offered buyouts or the option to return to the hotel when it reopens. A spokeswoman for the hotel said the renovation will take about a year.
Sears will close it's Fordham Road store in the Bronx, 91 workers will be laid off effective 11/23/2014
JPMorgan Chase & Co., the biggest U.S. lender, is cutting hundreds of technology support employees in its corporate and investment bank amid a revenue decline, people with knowledge of the move said. Workers in locations including New York, Tampa, Chicago and Dubai were notified of the cuts this month. Wall Street firms are trimming expenses by paring support employees and moving personnel to lower-cost locales amid a decline in fixed-income trading. The bank, which acquired Washington Mutual Inc.'s bank units and Bear Stearns Cos. during the financial crisis, is streamlining the group's technology systems.
Coach will lay off 150 of employees from the NYC corporate headquarters, as the company struggles to restructure its operations to attract a more fashion conscious clientele.
The Rivington House, a Manhattan residential care facility, is closing and will lay off 231 workers beginning 10/31/2014.
Manhattan Ford Lincoln is closing and will lay off 245 workers effective 09/30/2014. Swissport USA which handles cargo at JFK Intl Airport will lay off 180 workers effective 9/3/2014.
Gotham Transportation Corp (Brooklyn) laid off 311 school bus drivers and escorts on 8/15/2014 because of the loss of a contract.
The downward spiral of the e-commerce site Fab continues, with reports that it's going to trim its New York City office to less than 30 people, down from a few hundred. "Fab is going to reduce its NY office down to 20 to 25 people" and is "selling their warehouse in NJ," a source close to the company told Valleywag. This lines up with an earlier TechCrunch report that said that the company would be seriously down-sizing. Fab filed notice with the NYS Department of Labor that it would lay off 81 workers by 8/31/2014.
Viola Sweets, a Brooklyn Bakery, is closing 7/21/2014 and laying off 72 workers.
IAC Acoustics, A Bronx-based manufacturer of noise control products and systems, will cese operation by the end of 2014. Layoff of the company's 101 workers will 7/18/2014.
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