Tishman Buys Stuy Town, Plays Nice With Residents
The little is-MetLife-breaking-an-old-contract? headfake notwithstanding, Tishman Speyer closed its purchase of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village on Friday. That night, residents of the two mammoth complexes came home to find notes from their new landlords tucked under their apartment doors. It says many of the right things with the hope, no doubt, of assuaging middle-class residents’ fears that they’re going to be forced out. “We are a business with deep roots in New York, a true love of our city and a great respect for the neighborhoods that make it special,” the letter says. “We are committed to maintaining the unique character and environment that have made Peter Cooper Village and Stuyvesant Town such a wonderful place to live for so long.” But what’s most heartwarming about the letter is this: Rob Speyer, the company’s senior managing director and “head of New York,” who signed it, has the signature of a third-grader. Who can be scared of that?
There’s a larger image of the full letter here.
in other news
MetLife Stuy Town Deal Tripped Up by 50-Year-Old Fine Print?
There’s a major plot twist in the story of Stuyvesant Town’s impending $5.4 billion sale, potentially the largest real-estate deal in history. As any good plot twist should, it begins with a lawyer, alone in a library after hours, poring over a dusty folio (or so we’d like to think). He’s representing the megacomplex’s tenants (who lost their own bid for the place to Tishman Speyer), and he has unearthed an obscure provision in the 1942 agreement between the city and MetLife, Stuy Town’s owner. Under its terms, MetLife would get a 25-year tax break in exchange for a promise: The insurance company would keep rents low and, crucially, it would cap its annual profit at six percent.
The tenants’ lawyer has thus concluded that, should MetLife go on with the sale, it must either dissolve its subsidiary named in the agreement or fork over all excess profit to the city (yeah, right). MetLife, meantime, is of course shrugging this off as “a last-minute, desperate attempt to interfere.” Tishman Speyer is staying out of the mess altogether. And the ball is now in the city comptroller’s court, where the discovery may actually get some traction. Consider Comptroller William Thompson’s original statement when the sale was announced: “I am deeply disappointed that Metropolitan Life rushed to sign a deal without giving serious consideration to the offer submitted by the residents of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village.” Is this his chance to remedy that disappointment?
MetLife Real Estate Deal Could Be Derailed [Crain’s]
Thompson Statement, 10/17/06 [NYC.gov]
it just happened
Stuy Town Sold for $5.4 BillionSo much for the tenants’ group: Tishman Speyer, the real-estate behemoth that controls Rockefeller Center, among other things, has won the auction for Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village, agreeing to pay MetLife $5.4 billion for the complex. That works out to $486,769 for each of the complex’s 11,232 apartments. Which would take only 243 months — a mere twenty years and change to recoup if each unit rented for the maximum allowable stabilized amount of $2,000 per month. Naturally Tishman will wait that out, right?
110-Building Site in N.Y. Is Sold to Speyer [NYT]