Lower Manhattan Real Estate Overview, Q1 2020

Lower Manhattan Real Estate Overview, Q1 2020
The Alliance for Downtown New York is pleased to release the Q1 2020 Lower Manhattan Real Estate Market Report providing a review of commercial office, retail, residential, hospitality and development projects. The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed the world into unprecedented public health and economic crises. The New York City market, and Lower Manhattan particularly, however are no strangers to disruption — having weathered September 11, the global financial crisis of 2008-2009 and Superstorm Sandy.
Major findings during the first quarter include:  
  • Commercial Leasing – After strong momentum in 2019, leasing activity slowed down overall in Lower Manhattan due to the COVID-19 crisis with 1.18 million sq. ft. of office leases signed, down 30% from the previous quarter and 10% below the five-year quarterly average. FIRE and TAMI tenants drove the bulk of activity.  
  • Retail – Approximately 23% of Lower Manhattan retailers remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic, primarily those retailers providing services deemed “essential” by Governor Cuomo.
  • Incentive and Grant Programs  
    • Successful Renewal of Commercial Office Leasing Incentives – The New York State Legislature voted to renew and extend four different leasing incentives that have proven to be critical in attracting companies and good-paying jobs to Lower Manhattan. Details here
    • Small Business Rental Assistance Grant Program – The Downtown Alliance, with support from major Lower Manhattan property owners, launched an $800,000 grant program to offer immediate rental assistance to qualifying storefront businesses. Details here