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Century 21 Owners Sell Trio of Bldgs. for $46M

Century 21 Owners Sell Trio of Bldgs. for $46M

The buildings on Nassau Street are the last to be sold from a 26-property portfolio that netted the Gindi family, downtown’s most famous retailer, a total of $164 million. The latest sale is likely to result in the construction of a 100,000-square-foot residential tower.

A trio of downtown Manhattan buildings could soon give way to a residential tower with more than 100,000 square feet. Lexin Capital has purchased 75-81 Nassau St., three contiguous buildings two blocks east of the World Trade Center site paying nearly $46 million.

The buildings, which have 41-market rate apartments and ground-floor retail space, currently total about 50,000 square feet. That is less than half the roughly 108,000 square feet that the site is zoned to accommodate. Metin Negrin, the chief executive of Lexin Capital, said he would continue to operate the property as-is and in the coming years may redevelop the site, which permits up to about 72,000 square feet of residential space and about 36,000 square feet of commercial.

“We are big believers in the area, and in one or two years you’re going to see a lot of the investment here come to fruition,” Mr. Negrin said, referring to the billions of dollars of infrastructure and commercial development that have been built in and around the WTC site. Those projects include the new Fulton Center, now weeks from opening, and 1 World Trade Center, along with hundreds of thousands of square feet of surrounding retail space, that will open next year.

Bob Knakal, chairman of the brokerage firm Massey Knakal Realty Services, handled the deal for the sellers, the Gindi family. The properties were the last of a 26-building portfolio that the Gindi family hired Mr. Knakal to sell beginning in 2012. In addition to its real estate holdings, the family is notable for being the owner of the department store chain Century 21.

Mr. Knakal said that the entire portfolio, which totaled 420,000 square feet and includes 55 stories and 117 rental apartments, yielded $163.5 million. By splitting up the properties and selling them individually rather than as part of a package, Mr. Knakal said he netted more proceeds for the Gindi family.

“Selling them individually led to a significantly higher total price,” Mr. Knakal said.

The buildings were spread throughout Manhattan and the boroughs. One was in Philadelphia. Mr. Knakal said the Gindi family’s patience in selling the buildings over a two year period was also helpful in netting more proceeds. The market rose dramatically during that period.

Correction: A trio of buildings sold for $46 million. The sale price was misstated in an earlier version of the headline and text of this article published online June 26, 2014.

[Crain] – Daniel Geiger

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