Apple has been paying $6 million a year in rent to control a hole in the ground across from the Empire State Building so Apple can build another NYC retail temple. Alas, Steve Jobs has nixed the site as too slummy. Post:
neighbourhood advocates are irked – and retail brokers mystified – over the big, empty hole that Apple Inc. has left on one of Manhattan’s busiest shopping blocks as it tries to unload the site that CEO Steve Jobs no longer wants.
Apple controls 21-25 W. 34th St. between Fifth and Sixth avenues, diagonally across from the Empire State Building. Its 75-by-100-foot site constitutes half of the crater that also includes 27-29 W. 34th St., which has been leased to fancy footwear retailers Geox and Aldo.
But while a building to house the shoe stores is expected to rise soon, the Apple situation is less clear…
Apple liked the location so much it subsequently leased adjacent 25 W. 34th, giving it 75 feet of precious sidewalk frontage. Apple pays $5,906,692 in annualized rent, according to Green’s latest 10-K.
But Steve Jobs soon decided he didn’t want a store there after all; one source said he looked at a run-down building across the street and said, “This is not for Apple.”
Real estate agents, meanwhile, are mystified by Jobs’ legendary fussiness:
Leading retail brokers all think it’s a great location. Cushman & Wakefield’s Brad Mendelson called it “one of the city’s premier shopping streets.” Lansco President Alan Victor said, “There’s so much foot traffic, you can’t walk on the sidewalks.”
“It’s a bit perplexing,” echoed Newmark’s Jeffrey Roseman. “I chalk it up to Apple having a lot on their plate.”
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