June 5, 2006
Scarsdale Building Set to Start Construction
By Alex Phillippidis
An investor partnership is set to start construction on a 29,000-square-foot office-retail building in Scarsdale that will be the village’s first new downtown building in more than half a century.
Lawyers Mark Fawer and David Robbins head the partnership of institutional and individual investors that will transform a long-vacant parcel at 7 Popham Road into Scarsdale Metro Centre.
Through their F&R Popham L.L.C., the owner-developers anticipate interest from Westchester professionals seeking space that’s cheaper and closer to home than their Manhattan offices.
‘ We’re marketing it toward medical and financial tenants. It will service people who live in the area who don’t want to commute to the city any more. They’d rather be in their own offices,’ said Eric Goldschmidt, senior partner in Goldschmidt & Associates. The Scarsdale commercial real estate brokerage is marketing the project’s retail and professional space, as well as the commercial building 2 Overhill Road, which has just a single 1,300-square-foot space available.
Scarsdale Metro Centre is set to be finished this winter. No leases have yet been signed, Goldschmidt said, though talks were in progress with tenants interested in 60 percent of the building.
Selling points include the project’s location 100 feet south of the Metro-North Railroad station and 200 feet east of the Bronx River Parkway; as well as 30 covered parking spaces on the lower level, on grade with Constitution Circle, plus a kiosk envisioned for a bank ATM or coffee bar.
‘ There is other office space available, but one of the key things to making the Fawer-Robbins project really a place where people will want to rent is that they’ll have parking spaces for the tenants and their visitors,’ said Jonathan Gordon, president of Admiral Real Estate Services.
To that end, F&R Popham is in talks for more parking spaces off-site and is considering valet parking,’ Goldschmidt said.
Parking is no small amenity in downtown Scarsdale, where a parking crunch has helped kill decades of larger redevelopment projects. That crunch will worsen when construction starts this summer on a 42-unit condominium project for senior citizens on the site of a nonresident commuter parking lot at nearby Christie Place. The project is being developed by Valhalla-based Ginsburg Development L.L.C., with condo prices ranging from $700,000 to more than $1.5 million.
Another selling point, Goldschmidt said, was the building’s proximity to both Lawrence Hospital in Bronxville and White Plains Hospital Center. ‘ I would say doctors are going to be moving in.’
Admiral is exclusive leasing agent for 15 Popham Road, a 10,500-square-foot retail building. Admiral is marketing from 800 to 2,000 square feet of retail space at 15 Popham for $40 per square foot.
At 7 Popham, asking rents are $42 gross per square foot for the building’ s 16,000 square feet of medical and professional space, and $65 per square foot net for the retail space.
Pam Bren Goldschmidt is overseeing the retail leasing, while the office leasing is being directed by Laurence London.
‘ I would think they might even be able to find one large financial firm who might want to take a good portion of the building and maybe get their name on it, because of the recognition from the train alone,’ Gordon said.