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New JBG Realty Trust Head: NYC Needs To Be More Like DC


The JBG Cos, the DC-area-based developer that recently made waves with a tepidly received merger with New York REIT, has plans for the NYC market for the first time.

Fitting, as the new JBG Realty Trust, valued at $8.4B, will swallow New York REIT’s roughly 3.4M SF portfolio—positioned around the five boroughs—whole.

But JBG’s managing partner and the future CEO of the new combined company, Matt Kelly (left), tells the Washington Post while the NYC properties are a “terrific portfolio of assets” largely free of “problem properties,” many neighborhoods in the Big Apple have a ways to go before they reflect JBG’s image of an ideal mixed-use neighborhood.

The Washington Post cites DC’s U Street corridor, which JBG is largely responsible for transforming into a live-work-play hotspot (especially live—for a lot: $2,500 a month for a sub-600 SF studio—and play: the strip’s sidewalks literally overflow with revelers on weekend nights), as evidence .

“Generally speaking, New York is one of the most walkable cities in the world,” Matt, speaking at Bisnow's DC State of the Market on June 29, tells the Post. “But there are neighborhoods all over Manhattan and in the outer boroughs that are really not that well planned from a retail streetscape, walkability perspective, and really aren’t that pleasant or that nice when you think of bringing together all the different uses into a single place.”

To help realize its vision, the new company aims to bring on many of the outside consultants that manage New York REIT’s NYC assets. [WaPo]