Coopersmith and Coopersmith

It is obvious that there is a lot of retail vacancy in New York City. This article in the Atlantic that portends a dark future for retail received a lot of attention (my favorite part is the Tennessee Williams quote), and the New York City Council is debating a bill to institute arbitration for commercial lease renewals. I’ve been involved in these extension negotiations and they aren’t always pretty, but the text of the bill is flawed and will harm business in New York. I don’t believe that retail is dead, and neither do the entrepreneurs who have appeared on this podcast over the past 3.5 years. The truth is places with bad retail experiences are struggling and the valuations at which many Landlords purchased buildings don’t support the current rental rates. Digital real estate (aka a share of people’s attention online) is becoming more expensive and while there will be more purchases made online there will always be things we NEED, WANT, and DO in person. Innovative ideas will be the solution.In just the past two weeks Amazon announced it will have a cashierless store in New York and Brookfield received attention for its “experiment” with emerging brands on Bleecker Street.

Opportunity Zones The Opportunity Zone Program was created as part of last years’s federal tax law. In the real estate world it is getting a lot of attention.Opportunity Zones allow for the deferral and exclusion of capital gains in respect of investments in designated “opportunity zones”. These capital gains can come from real estate and non-real estate assets (i.e. stocks, sale of business, etc.) and investors in Opportunity Zones can defer paying tax until the earlier to occur of: investment is sold or exchanged; and December 31, 2026.

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