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Real Deal: signs of distress, at least in short-term for office space and luxury units

Is New York real estate showing symptoms of distress? asks the Real Deal asks in its 6/1/17 issue. Here's a relevant passage for AY/PP watchers:
On the whole, office leasing across the boroughs has been healthy.... However, much of the leasing activity has been driven by concessions...
Absorption is especially low in Brooklyn, where about 7 million square feet of office space is in the pipeline despite very little interest from big-name Manhattan tenants. Amid the growing oversupply, the vacancy rate in Brooklyn reached 7.1 percent in the first quarter, up from 5.7 percent in late 2015, according to CoStar Group data.
So that suggests that developer Greenland Forest City Partners might not be unhappy that its two contemplated--though not yet approved--office projects are still a good way from fruition: the plan to transfer bulk from the approved B1 tower at the arena plaza across the street to Site 5, as well as the plan to convert the B4 tower at the northeast corner of the arena block from residential to office.

Both require approval by Empire State Development, the state authority overseeing/shepherding the project, which is generally a rubber stamp. However, the public process hasn't yet begun.

The delay in Site 5 is related to an unresolved lawsuit from P.C. Richard, whose store at the site is subject to eminent domain. The delay in B4--which has also been marketed to outside investors--seems more a business decision, though actual construction would have to wait until further work is completed on project infrastracture.

Delayed apartments?

Despite design plans for the B12 condo building (aka 615 Dean), it hasn't launched, as Greenland Forest City has paused development to see how the luxury market shakes out.

The article states:
While the city’s multifamily market continues to serve as a safe haven for investors, the vibe is definitely not as positive as it was just two years ago. Fewer deals are getting done in several key multifamily markets such as Northern Manhattan and Brooklyn.
...Dollar volume in the sector was down 60 percent year-over-year, to $1.6 billion, in the first quarter, an Ariel Property Advisors report shows.
As of May 12, there were 2,300 active rental listings in Manhattan and 600 in Brooklyn and Queens offering free rent or brokerage fees paid by the landlord, according to a monthly report by Town Residential. Respectively, 62 percent and 65 percent of those incentives were on units priced between $2,500 and $5,000 a month.
In other words, as we know well, there's a glut in luxury units. That should change at some point, but not immediately.

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