0 Financial District Tower Proposed Again

Proposed office tower location in Financial District Boston

Credit: Boston Business Journal

Round two for the proposed tallest building in Boston; the BRA might be offering the 47,738 square-foot parcel up for sale. The market rents in Class A Financial District buildings continue to move up as vacancy rates continue to drop.

According to the BBJ, “Mayor Thomas M. Menino, who had previously sought proposals to build a 1,000-foot tower with 1.3 million square feet of office space at the Winthrop Street Garage site on Devonshire Street between Winthrop Square and Federal Street, confirmed the BRA’s plan to seek a developer for the 47,738-square-foot parcel.”

Additional details can be found on the Boston Business Journal’s article, Menino Tower to get Second Chance

0 188 High Street may become Niche Hotel

188 High Street Boston

Credit: Boston Herald

Today it offers parking for three cars wide, tomorrow it could offer two twin beds or a queen.  The is the parcel know as 188 High Street which will be under review for a new 15 story glass façade hotel.

According to the Boston Herald, “a 60-room hotel is being proposed for a narrow paved lot on Boston’s High Street, across from the towering International Place in the Financial District…Developer Ronald Luccio Jr. plans to build an estimated $6 million, 15-story, glass-faced building for the moderately priced, limited-amenities hotel, where rooms would be small.”

The full article is up on the Boston Herald website.

0 Sublease-market Risks Brought to Light with First Marblehead Corp’s IRS Problems

First Marblehead Corp logoShould I sublease space or go direct to the landlord? That is a common question in the industry and the answer truly depends. If you are considering a sublease you need to consider the financial capacity of the sub lessor. After all, you could be paying your obligation, but if they aren’t covering the shortfall then you could find yourself looking for new space.

The Boston Business Journal wryly reports, “First Marblehead Corp.’s blasé mention this week that it might, possibly, probably owe the IRS some $300 million would be bad enough if the potential fallout was confined to its own operations. So listen up, all of you subtenants over at 31 St. James Avenue and 800 Boylston St.”

The BBJ’s extensive look at First Marblehead Corp’s IRS issues is available on its website: First Marblehead’s IRS headache

0 East Berkeley Street to House New 11-Story Office Building

80 E. Berkeley St in Boston

Credit: Patch

Our city continues to grow, expand and evolve. The Druker Company is proposing a 290,000 RSF building on East Berkeley Street to replace a surface lot and auto repair facility. With rents continuing to push north and available options dwindling, the market is ready for new inventory.

Patch is reporting that “the Boston Redevelopment Authority will host a public meeting on Wednesday night to go over the details of the project…The proposal from developers The Druker Company, Ltd., calls for 290,000 square feet of office space on ten floors, 18,000 square feet of retail or restaurant space on the ground level, and a parking garage with 200 spaces.”

Southend Patch has the full article available on its website.

0 Seaport Traffic Growing

Summer Street office building in Boston's seaport district

321 Summer Street

This is a citywide problem that is not just plaguing the Seaport. As we know, Boston is an old city with both old and new infrastructure. The solution is changing the habits of our commuting population, do we need our car at work every day? Perhaps the city and or employers can offer incentives to keep our cars at home? In London, there is a toll to enter the city during rush hour and as a result that reduces the number of passenger vehicles on the roadways.

The Boston Globe recently looked at how the growth of the Seaport submarket is playing out on the roadways:

“While the morning commute is tolerable, everyone seems to head out at 5 p.m., creating bumper-to-bumper traffic along the main spine on Seaport Boulevard, spilling out onto Atlantic Avenue, and clogging side roads throughout the area…’All this growth wasn’t supposed to happen until 2025,’ said Mayor Thomas Menino. ‘It’s a wonderful success. Because of the success, we’re having a problem. It’s amazing to me.’”

The complete article is available on the Boston Globe’s website: Seaport District Faces Gridlock

0 The Importance of Business Collaboration

Office building on State Street in Boston

255 State Street in Boston

There is something to be said for water bubbler conversations, old fashion face time. In the era of telecommuting and Aps for this and Aps for that companies are trying to their staff be in a position to share ideas with their peers.  The idea seems simple enough, but how do you make it a reality? The question I have for you is do you know what your neighbor does?

A Boston Globe article about business collaboration stresses the advantage of physical networking, even in a world of virtual industry:

“Here’s how it’s supposed to work: Two years ago, Guzzi called Niraj Shah, the cofounder and chief executive of Wayfair, a Boston-based furniture and home goods Internet retailer that generates more sales than Crate and Barrel online. They met over breakfast at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel’s Asana, where Guzzi persuaded Shah to join the chamber. The chamber landed a star e-commerce company, one that now employs more than 900 people in Boston — a 50 percent increase in just a couple of years. Wayfair got fresh connections and a far stronger voice in Boston’s business community.”

The full globe editorial is available on their website: Bostonglobe.com

0 Office Prices Soaring in Boston’s Innovation District

Office rents have increased in excess of 40 percent in the last two years in the Innovation District. What will happen as those leases start to roll in 2014, will those tenants be able to afford the new rents?

Boston's innovation district at night

Credit: InnovationDistrict.org

A recent editorial in the Boston Globe noted the challenges facing small businesses and occupants of the Innovation District:

“The Innovation District is in danger of becoming a top-heavy boutique neighborhood because it targets price-sensitive businesses, but has no way of providing stable rents. There’s no consensus about who should pay to keep office rents affordable at the very low end — developers, large companies, area institutions, or the city itself could all conceivably handle the job — and, even if consensus did exist, there’s no means of enforcing it.”

Jump over to the BostonGlobe.com for the full article.

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0 Greenway Site: Normandy Hotel

The last available parcel for the Greenway has now been awarded. The Big Dig project started in the 1991 and was completed in in 2006 and holds the distinction of the most expensive highway project in the U.S.

Parcel 9 Hanover Street

Credit: Boston Business Journal

“Five years after the state offered up one of the last remaining parcels along Boston’s Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway for sale, Normandy Real Estate Partners’ bid for a hotel has been selected….Normandy’s proposed development calls for mid-priced hotel and a first-floor food market to complement the adjacent Haymarket Pushcart Association produce market,” a Boston Business Journal report noted.

The complete article is available on the Boston Business Journal’s website: MassDOT chooses Normandy hotel

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0 Boston Class A Office Buildings with at least 1 million rentable square feet

Clients frequently ask, what is that building worth.  The answer is never simple, due myriad of data.  With the recent trade by Blackstone of One Post Office Square to its partner Morgan Stanley for $718 per square foot, I figured I would apply that same number to Boston Class A buildings greater than 1 million rentable square feet according to CoStar.

Building Address

Building Name

Rentable Building Area

Estimated Value

200 Clarendon Street John Hancock Tower                          1,755,398  $     1,260,375,764
100 Federal Street Bank of America                          1,304,899  $        936,917,482
One Financial Center One Financial Center                          1,279,492  $        918,675,256
800 Boylston Street                          1,207,499  $        866,984,282
53 State Street Exchange Place                          1,194,000  $        857,292,000
1 Federal Street                          1,120,577  $        804,574,286
600 Atlantic Avenue Federal Reserve Plaza                          1,051,295  $        754,829,810
1 Lincoln Street State Street Financial Center                          1,045,106  $        750,386,108
100 Summer Street                          1,034,605  $        742,846,390
1 International Place One International Place                          1,025,000  $        735,950,000
1 Beacon Street One Beacon                          1,017,168  $        730,326,624

0 400-foot Tower Considered at 40 Trinity Place in Back Bay

What does $593.09 get you in Boston? Well that is the estimated price per square foot to construct the 379,370 square feet at 40 Trinity Place. According the Boston Redevelopment Authority’s web site, the Project includes the construction of a new, mixed-use structure at the corner of Trinity Place and Stuart Street. A portion of the Project will cantilever over the existing University Club parcel.

tower in back bay

Rendering of 40 Trinity Place Tower (Credit: Banker & Tradesman)

Banker & Tradesman:

“The development team, a trinity of Boston hotel operators Jeffrey and Gary Saunders and Jordan Warshaw, plans to build 115 condos and 227 hotel rooms in a 400-foot tower at 40 Trinity Place…The project is currently being reviewed by the Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA), which last night held its first public meeting about the $225-million tower. If approved, the building will contain three restaurants, with a lobby and banquet space on floors 18 and 19.”