Tenant Rap

Mr. Colacino: I think 120 Park is also a similar version of the same story. How that goes is going

Mr. Colacino: I think 120 Park is also a similar version of the same story. How that goes is going to determine to some extent what the future of the market is. If it just sits there for a really long period of time and people continue to look at it as a way to kind of price other alternatives down, I think that’s a sign that the market is going to have a long, slow decline.

Isn’t one of the issues that it’s unclear who the tenant base is going to be? I mean, we don’t have huge financial firms anymore.

Mr. Steir: We’re still losing jobs in New York City, so we have to see what tenant group becomes the new leadership. But I will tell you that the stock of buildings is not expanding. We’ve had relatively little development over the past decade as contrasted to decades past, and it won’t take a whole lot to cause the market to get a little healthier, even though I don’t really see a material change in the direction of pricing until we get into the single-digit availability, and I don’t see that happening for at least a year and a half, two years.

Mr. Colacino: I have a more optimistic overall macroeconomic view than my partner does. Because I think that while the Lehman story is a terrible tragedy, and a real estate tragedy, the Barclays story is really not getting reported that much. But the fact of the matter is that Barclays is going to grow in New York and is going to bring more worldwide financial capital flavor to New York, and that’s true of all the major European banks. We also haven’t even begun to write the story of China. Let’s say that you’re a Chinese company and you need to do business in the United States. Where are you going to go? You’re not going to go to Los Angeles. You’re not going to go to San Francisco. You’re going to come to New York.

So then are you two pitching a lot of work overseas?
Mr. Colacino: We bought approximately 50 percent of a Paris-based company with offices in 14 E.U. countries two years ago. And as we look at the French financial institutions, and we think of our partnership with our French company, we’re very optimistic about the possibility of large French organizations coming in greater waves to New York.

Have you made any recent trips to China?

Mr. Colacino: We brought our 100 top people, which we do in our winter trips, to Beijing and Hong Kong in 2006, and that’s quite an undertaking … and we have nice pictures of us climbing up the Great Wall of China together.

Tenant Rap