Tishman Speyer Secures ‘Spire’ Site for $438 Million
BY SAM SPOKONY | After a $438 million deal that reportedly closed on April 29, the tallest office building on the far West Side (potentially the tallest in the nation) could soon be built not by Related Companies or Brookfield Properties ― two of the area’s current biggest stakeholders ― but by another major developer who’s decided to get in on the action.
Tishman Speyer’s purchase of the two adjacent 10th Avenue lots now gives the developer control of the entire block between West 34th and West 35th Streets. In an April 30 release, Tishman said it also hopes to purchase additional development rights in order to construct a massive 2.85 million-square-foot office tower, which it added would likely also include street-level retail.
One of those lots, at 435 10th Avenue, was sold to Tishman by the real estate firm Massel Knakal, which had, since January, prominently marketed the undeveloped lot as the future site of “Hudson Spire,” an imagined tower that could rise to 1,800 feet ― slightly taller than One World Trade Center, currently the nation’s tallest building.
No construction permits for the site have yet been filed, and the developer has not released any further details about the planned height or design of the tower. Tishman’s co-CEO Rob Speyer told the Wall Street Journal on April 29 that he and his firm will not start construction until finding a major tenant to anchor the building.
Tishman’s tower would sit just north of Related’s 26-acre, $15 billion Hudson Yards megaproject, which, when completed, will cover a swath bounded by West 30th and West 33rd Streets, and Tenth and Twelfth Avenues. Related’s first office tower, the 1.7 million-square-foot 10 Hudson Yards (which will rise to 895 feet), is still on track to open next year.
Notably, Tishman was the first developer to make a deal with the Metropolitan Transit Authority on that Hudson Yards site back in 2008, but the deal went south ― reportedly affected by the financial crisis that began that year ― before Related eventually swooped in to secure the project. This is the first time Tishman has committed to a development site in the area since then.
The future 10th Avenue tower would also sit north of Brookfield’s $4.5 billion Manhattan West project, another mixed-use development that, just east of Hudson Yards, will span between West 31st and West 33rd Streets, from Ninth Avenue to 10th Avenue. Brookfield has said it hopes to construct and open a new 60-story office tower within that site by 2016, and is currently undertaking major renovations at the 44-year-old building at 450 West 33rd Street, which are also planned to be completed by 2016.
In other news, Brookfield also announced on April 29 that it has received City Council approval for a zoning change that will allow the developer to move forward with plans to double the size of the open space within the Manhattan West project. The development’s green space and plazas — which will snake between the project’s two office buildings, hotel and residential tower — can now officially be bumped up to two acres, after the original proposal called for just one acre.
Given all of the dense commercial development already underway in the area, the Council apparently had no qualms about boosting the size the of Brookfield’s park sliver.
“These new changes will make this a better project with more open space and amenities that the entire community can enjoy,” said Councilmember David Greenfield, who chairs the Council’s Committee on Land Use, in an April 29 statement released with Brookfield’s announcement. “This is exactly the kind of economic development that we need in the city. A project that creates jobs, builds a beautiful neighborhood and improves neighboring communities.”