A $100 million project on Manhattan’s Auto Row that has billionaire William Ackman as an investor shows how a stretch on the far West Side is turning the corner from industrial hinterland to office magnet.
Mr. Ackman is a partner with the developer Georgetown Co. and investment firm Main Street Advisors Inc. in the redevelopment of 787 11th Ave., an eight-story building between West 54th and West 55th streets that houses Jaguar Land Rover Manhattan, Infiniti of Manhattan and Nissan of Manhattan dealerships operated by BNF Automotive Group. The partners paid $255.5 million for the property.
Georgetown is leading the top-to-bottom makeover, which calls for upscale offices on floors above the dealerships. Designed by Uruguayan architect Rafael Viñoly, the overhaul promises oversize windows, 24-foot ceilings and the addition of a two-story glass penthouse. Mr. Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management LP is expected to occupy the penthouse after the work is completed at the end of 2017, people familiar with the project said.
“Some people like the idea and covet the opportunity of being trailblazers,” said Woody Heller, executive managing director and head of the capital-transactions group at the real estate services firm Savills Studley. “And maybe Bill [Mr. Ackman] is making the bet that this is an area that will continue to glisten as an office alternative...”Manhattan’s Auto Row Is Attracting Office Developers
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