Bronx Project Voted Down, Brooklyn Project Should Go Ahead (Wednesday's News & Notes)

Getting a retail project approved in New York City is always a challenge, but this week's decision by the New York City Council to say no to Related Companies' plan to redevelop a vacant armory in the Bronx into a shopping center brought forth an important dilemma: what's a reasonable compromise between a community and a developer? Local officials wanted an assurance from Related that workers at the completed project would be paid a living wage. Worried that wage demands would scare off potential tenants, Related said no. Now, Related can't go ahead with the project, but Bronx residents have also lost thousands of potential construction and retail jobs.

  • The Los Angeles Times reports that retailers are turning back to discounting to drive sales this holiday season.
  • The Morning News offers a slideshow of vacant malls.
  • Developer Bruce Ratner has sold $511 million in tax-free bonds, almost enough to finance his Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn, according to the New York Daily News.
  • The Daily News also ran a story about the New York City Council turning down a proposed Related project to redevelop a vacant armory in the Bronx. The project was voted down over a wage dispute.
  • Price Chopper Supermarkets made an offer to buy 22 Penn Traffic stores for $54 million in a private sale, according to our sister publication Supermarket News. Penn Traffic filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in November.
  • Chattanooga Times Free Press reports that Stephen D. Lebovitz will assume the position of CEO at regional mall REIT CBL & Associates Properties effective Jan. 1. He will succeed his father, Charles B. Lebovitz, in the position.
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