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Planning Ahead in LIC

New York

Massey Knakal’s James Nelson (right, whom we snapped yesterday at the company’s 275 Madison office with colleagues Karl Brumback and Garrett Thelander) says tech startups are calling up Massey Knakal and asking for space in Long Island City. That’s thanks to the Cornell Tech campus going up on Roosevelt Island. He also says investors are asking the company to find properties in that area that can rent as is (even if for a 4% or 5% return) but also become development sites later. That tells James that land banking will be the next big thing in LIC.


Adrian Mercado (right, with Mark Holz) says 2013 Queens property sales exceeded 2012’s total, even though $1.6B of the $2.3B happened in the second half. Price/SF rose 13%, and the market is especially starved for elevator apartment buildings, which are trading for $235/SF, a 49% increase over 2012’s average. (Would the lobbying group in favor of walk-ups be known as Big Foot?) Development sites, meanwhile, rose 35% to $119/buildable SF, driven mostly by LIC, which, incidentally, caused industrial prices to rise a bit, too.