Wednesday, April 2, 2008

RIOC Real Estate Development Advisory Committee Meeting Today - Any Progress on Main Street Retail Vacancies?

Among the items on the agenda are a review of the leasing status of current tenants as well as prospective tenants for the existing vacant stores. It will be interesting to see if any progress has been made on applying the New York State Public Authorities Act to Roosevelt Island Main Street retail vacancies. The issue, as explained by DHCR Commissioner VanAmerongen to the January 10 2008 Main Street Wire, is the following:

"There are parts of the Public Authorities Accountability law that make it more cumbersome for RIOC, but they are the same laws that apply to the Queens West Development Corporation and to the Battery Park City Authority and some other, not dissimilar developments. We have been trying to work with the Attorney General’s office to gain greater flexibility but, clearly, the law was not written with the idea of doing rental leases on Main Street. We have to comply with the law but we are trying to gain some greater flexibility." [The Public Authorities Accountability Act, passed in response to a Pataki administration attempt to give Erie Canal land to a developer at bargain prices, and in response to the MTA’s proposed sale of development rights over the West Side railyards, provides that State authorities like RIOC must get top dollar for the State’s properties, or have a good reason not to do so. This generally entails competitive bidding, requests for proposals, and detailed financial representations – something "mom and pop" merchants are unwilling or unable to do.]
RIOC President Shane had this to say in January Main Street WIRE:
Northtown Commercial Leasing: Unhappy to report that there is no progress in resolving the paralysis of the marketing of the vacant stores on Main Street. The application, pushed by Assemblymember Micah Kellner, to the Attorney General for an opinion that would permit RIOC to go forward without the cumbersome steps required by the law, languishes without decision. The legislation introduced by Assemblymember Kellner is grounded in Albany, like almost everything else. I have canvassed some of the commercial brokers in Astoria to get a feel for what would be involved in the appraisal process if RIOC has to go that route. Negotiations with all of the existing tenants has taken place to give them the security of leases so as to encourage interior improvement.
Here is the Public Notice of today's RIOC Real Estate Development Advisory Committee Meeting:

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a meeting of the Real Estate Development Advisory Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors will be held on Wednesday, April 2, 2008 at 5:00 p.m. at the RIOC administrative office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York. The committee will meet to:

1. Review present tenant leasing status;
2. Review prospective leasing for vacant stores;
3. Discuss Orphans International use of 559 Main Street (formerly Montauk Credit Union);
4. Discuss lease extensions for Dayspring Church and Trellis Restaurant;
5. Discuss current issues at the Motorgate parking facility;
6. Discuss Public Safety alternate plans to expand and rehabilitate in present space; and
7. Discuss such other business as may come before the Committee


Anonymous said...

Speaking of vacant stores, what happened to the chiropractor? That office has been dark for months, but no sign of anything being taken out of it. Is he coming back?

Anonymous said...

People will never understand that public safety needs more space and updated facilites for their expanding department. There is no room for updating or expansion unless they took over 550 Main St. You would still have the parking issues Frank Farance bitched so much about.

Anonymous said...

How about scrapping the public safety department and put a real police department in its place?