The real estate investment firm EPIC has purchased 148 Lafayette Street from Property Group Partners for approximately $131.7 million (around $850 per square foot). Designed originally in 1913 by by McKenzie Vorhees and Gmelin Architects, 148 Lafayette Street’s 2008 renovation was executed by Cook + Fox and earned Gold certification under USGBC’s LEED for Core and Shell rating system.
PGP purchased the building in 2007 for $60.4 million. “We bought this building when it was, excuse the expression, a dump,” Rolland Baribeau, COO of PGP, which owned the asset in a partnership with Bruce Toll and members of the Louis-Dreyfus family, told the Commercial Property Executive. “The reason we bought it is because it was built in 1913 and it was an industrial building so structurally, it was very good.”
At the start of the $15.5 million renovation program in 2007, the 12-story tower’s tenant roster was slim. But by 2009, 148 Lafayette Street was entirely leased up. Its roster now includes Dolce & Gabbana’s U.S. headquarters and a showroom. Most of those leases – signed just before the Great Recession hit – were for 15-year terms, so the new owners are buying stable cash flow in a Class A property rather than a value-add opportunity: just 7500 square feet of retail space is currently available.
148 Lafayette Street’s renovation program installed a digital, tenant-controlled HVAC system, efficient plumbing fixtures, recycled-content and low-VOC building materials, a green roof, and a 5200-square-foot rooftop penthouse (pictured). Panoramic, energy-efficient windows – whose dimensions are 5 feet by 9 feet on most floors – provide tenants with views of lower Manhattan. Each tenant floor – which includes 12,000 square feet of office space on average – features exposed brick walls, refinished hardwood floors, and restrooms with showers. 148 Lafayette Street is also served by a new high-speed elevator system from a renovated lobby.
EPIC’s New York City portfolio also includes 525 Park Avenue, 34 Leonard Street and 15 Little West 12th Street. The firm has extensive holdings in the United Kingdom, Germany, and Canada.