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Jerry Gottesman's $4B Empire Looks to the Future

New York

Jerry Gottesman, the man behind Manhattan Mini Storage and many other parking lots and storage sites, is one smart man. Fifty years ago, when New Yorkers were fleeing the city, the Edison Properties chairman did the opposite, grabbing land on both sides of the Hudson. Today that land's worth more than $4B, Crain's New York reports. His portfolio is up there with some of the greatest real estate dynasties in the city, boasting 20 parking lots and 17 self-storage buildings. What's more is the income potential of developing these low-use properties into residential, hotel, office and retail spaces. Example: last month he sold a parking lot next to the High Line for $870M. He paid just $2.4M for it in the '80s. While this may sound like a dream to most, it's complicated by Gottesman's need to make some serious decisions about the future of his family business in the coming years. Few family-run businesses make it to a second or third generation, and existing tensions haven't helped. Gottesman's family is divided on whether to liquidate more assets, develop them, take on partners or just keep things as they are. So far, the firm is considering purchasing property outside of Manhattan with proceeds from the $870M sale. [Crain's]