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Old 05-25-2006, 05:02 AM   #1
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Complete Millennium Tower (Filene's) | 426 Washington Street | Downtown

Millennium Tower
426 Washington St., Boston




Status
Under Construction

Architects
Blake Middleton of Handel Architects
Developer
Millennium Partners

Stats
Name: Millennium Tower
Project Address: 426 Washington Street, Boston
Map & Plan Links: Mapping Boston's Tallest New Residential Developments
Neighborhood:Financial District
Uses: Residential, Retail
Land Sq. Ft.: Unknown
Building Sq. Ft.: 1.1 Million
Height: 60 floors | 625 ft | 191 m

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Old 05-25-2006, 05:03 AM   #2
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Mayor: Filene?s developers eye hotel, condos
By Scott Van Voorhis
Wednesday, May 24, 2006


Boston?s historic Filene?s complex is being targeted for a hotel, along with other new development, Mayor Thomas M. Menino said yesterday.

Menino, who was in Las Vegas for a major shopping center and retail conference, met with executives from Vornado Realty Trust, the big New York developer with a deal to buy downtown Boston?s historic, retail flagship.

Vornado executives sketched out some preliminary concepts they are exploring, namely a hotel, condos and expanded retail, Menino indicated.

Discount retailer Target, which is eager for a Boston location, is also interested in the Filene?s complex, among other sites, Menino said.

?Everyone is looking at Filene?s,? Menino said. ?Filene?s is hot.?

Menino?s comments come after he and other city officials and local developers held a series of marathon-like meetings with executives from the nation?s biggest retail chains.

The pitch was generally well received, Menino said.

?There is an excitement about coming to Boston,? Menino said.

Menino?s comments shed additional light on Vornado?s plans for redeveloping the 1912 Filene?s complex, which covers a key city block in the heart of the Downtown Crossing shopping district.

Vornado is expected to renovate and rent out the historic Filene?s building, while tearing down modern additions in the rear to make way for new development, executives familiar with the planning have said.

Filene?s was just one of many potential retail locations - from Roxbury to South Boston?s waterfront - Menino tried to sell to retail executives during his swing through the giant International Council of Shopping Centers event.

Menino met with executives from major supermarket chains, including Hannafords and Wegmans.

Developers: Hub ?under-retailed?
By Scott Van Voorhis
Monday, May 22, 2006 - Updated: 02:30 PM EST


Will Boston?s luxury condo tower boom trigger a surge in demand for new shops, stores and restaurants?

Some developers are betting big that Boston, as it mourns the pending loss of its beloved Filene?s flagship department store, is ?under-retailed? and ready for a big expansion downtown and on the waterfront.

Nor is the demand just in high-profile downtown areas, with City Hall making the pitch that lucrative new retail opportunities are to be found in Boston?s collection of neighborhoods.

Nor is it just developers who are buzzing about Boston?s retail potential.

Mayor Thomas M. Menino spent the weekend at a Las Vegas shopping center confab pitching the city?s retail opportunities to major retail chain executives.

The retail push comes after a decade of growing awareness nationally of the need for more retail in urban areas. And the trend toward downtown condo high-rise living is making this retail need even more urgent, noted Jim Koury, a top executive and retail expert at Boston real estate firm Spaulding & Slye.

?It further exacerbates a long existing need for more retail in urban markets, especially in Boston, in both upscale and middle-class areas,? Koury said.

Builders are eyeing both the emerging South Boston waterfront, and the traditional Downtown Crossing shopping district, for new retail development.

Hub developer John Drew is laying plans for hundreds of thousands of square feet of new retail space on Southie?s waterfront.

Drew?s Waterside Place envisions a new department store and a new supermarket, as well as shops, stores and eateries, on an undeveloped tract across from the $800 million-plus Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

With Filene?s poised to become history, Drew believes the Boston market is ripe for new department stores.

?The retail potential of Boston can be expanded,? Drew said, calling the city ?under-retailed.?

?There is room for more than one additional store,? he said.

Giant New York property player Vornado Realty Trust, which is finalizing a deal to buy Downtown Crossing?s Filene?s site, appears to be making a similar calculation.

Vornado is likely to pursue a Target store, and maybe even a supermarket, to anchor a plan to redevelop and expand the Filene?s complex. A top company executive recently estimated that 400,000 additional square feet of retail space could be added, bringing the Filene?s complex up to 1 million square feet, Bloomberg News has reported.

Menino and city officials, in Las Vegas for a major retail convention, were making a similar pitch to big chain executives.

City officials are talking up the need and potential for a new grocery store downtown, as well as drugstores and restaurants on Southie?s steadily growing waterfront.

But Boston development officials are also hoping to get retailers interested in the city?s neighborhoods, noted Susan Elsbree, a spokeswoman for the Boston Redevelopment Authority.

Big national clothing stores and pharmacies are needed in areas like Dudley Square, the South End and Jamaica Plain. There is a citywide need as well for a sporting goods store where one can buy ice skates, tennis rackets and the like, Elsbree said.

?One of our big focuses are (retailers) who haven?t broken into the Boston market yet,? she said.

Meanwhile, some see the need for new retail extending beyond Boston?s borders to its close-in suburbs.

To the west of the city along Route 128, two major retail complexes are in the works.

The Redstone media empire and a local developer are planning a new ?life-style? shopping center and movie complex at Dedham?s sprawling Showcase Cinemas site. And just over the line, mall developer king Steve Karp is eyeing a large retail complex as part of a new, mixed use neighborhood in Westwood at the University Avenue MBTA station.

?They are looking at the (retail) hole in the region between the South Shore Plaza and Natick,? said Robert Sheehan, vice president of research at Finard & Co., which specializes in retail real estate.

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Old 05-25-2006, 05:41 PM   #3
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Anyone like sports? Do you think this would be a good fit for the location?

Modell's interested in Filene's building
Mayor says he would welcome the chain to Downtown Crossing

By Jenn Abelson, Globe Staff | May 24, 2006

Modell's Sporting Goods said yesterday that it is interested in opening a store in the historic Filene's building in Downtown Crossing as part of its New England expansion.

Doug Epstein, Modell's vice president of real estate and general counsel, said the company has been eyeing Downtown Crossing for several years and ``the Filene's space would definitely be an exciting spot for us to locate. We have significant interest in trying to locate a store there."

Mayor Thomas M. Menino , who returned yesterday from a retail conference in Las Vegas, where he met with Modell's officials, said he'd welcome the company to Downtown Crossing. The struggling shopping district is facing its biggest challenge when the landmark Filene's closes this year as part of Federated Department Stores' takeover of Filene's and other regional chains.

Vornado Realty Trust of New York, which is finalizing a deal to purchase the block-size complex, has told city officials that initial plans could include multiple levels of retail space and possibly a supermarket, along with a residential tower. Menino has also expressed interest in having a hotel on the property, and said yesterday that the discounter Target is considering the site.

Madison Riley , a principal at retail consultant Kurt Salmon Associates, said the Filene's site makes sense for big box retailers like Target and Modell's, which can absorb a fair amount of space, offer moderate price points, and sell a variety of products.

``They're both great retailers with strong brands and very different types of merchandise that don't conflict," Riley said.

Modell's, founded in 1889, opened its first store in Lower Manhattan and currently operates more than 125 stores along the East Coast under the names Modell's Sporting Goods, Henry Modell & Co., and other affiliates. In recent years, Modell's has focused on New England, opening four stores in Massachusetts, with another three to be launched this summer. At Menino's urging, Modell's is also exploring Dudley Square in Roxbury as a possible site for a store.

``We feel that Downtown Crossing and the city of Boston is extremely underserved in our category," Epstein said. ``With the traffic, the visibility, and the excitement here, it all makes sense."

Modell's is the first store to publicly express its interest in the Filene's site. After Federated disclosed plans to sell the building last fall, several merchants, including Home Depot Inc., Jordan's Furniture, and Kohl's, approached the city about moving into the space on Washington Street, The Boston Globe previously reported. But none of these companies have confirmed their interest in the site.

Following a frenzy of meetings with retailers and developers in Las Vegas, Menino yesterday described his trip ``as one of the most productive in years."

He talked with officials from Lowe's Home Improvement about opening a store on American Legion Highway in Roslindale and with Tommy Bahama, a seller of high-end resort wear, about locations in the Back Bay and the South Boston Waterfront. Sundance Cinemas, an art house cinema chain, ``is very interested in going to the South Boston Waterfront," Menino said, and Target is ``still very interested in Downtown Crossing" and other neighborhoods, such as Brighton and Hyde Park.

A Lowe's spokeswoman said the company does not comment on prospective locations. Officials at Target, Tommy Bahama, and Sundance could not be reached.

In Las Vegas, Menino continued his campaign to lure more grocery stores to Boston. He met with several supermarket chains, including Whole Foods, Wegmans, and Fresh Market. Fresh Market, a North Carolina specialty grocer, is interested in the Boston area, possibly in Downtown Crossing or the waterfront, though no specific locations have been discussed, according to a retail real estate developer for the firm.

Jenn Abelson can be reached at abelson@globe.com.
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Old 05-26-2006, 09:24 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Van Voorhis
Drew?s Waterside Place envisions a new department store and a new supermarket, as well as shops, stores and eateries, on an undeveloped tract across from the $800 million-plus Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.
The supermarket would be huge. I write this from my parents' house in Pittsburgh. They're partially retired and have considered moving to downtown Pgh, but there's no supermarket there, so they're probably not going to make the move. Downtown Boston's already well on its way to becoming a functional residential location (always has been, or at least there have always been functional residential locations immediately adjacent, unlike in Pgh, whose downtown is cut off from the rest of the city by rivers and highway), but opening up a supermarket there will really help it, which is great.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Van Voorhis
Big national clothing stores and pharmacies are needed in areas like Dudley Square, the South End and Jamaica Plain. There is a citywide need as well for a sporting goods store where one can buy ice skates, tennis rackets and the like, Elsbree said.
No!!! Keep big national chains out, especially of JP! (I lived in JP for 2 years before moving to Back Bay.) Where else can you find a locally-owned supermarket (Hi-Lo) and gas station (forget the name... I think there are 2 of them actually). Pretty much the only chains in the neighborhood are Dunkin' Donuts, Foot Locker, and CVS, which for such a big neighborhood is really remarkable.

Really, though, I don't like this huge push to bring to Boston the same damn stores that exist everywhere else on the planet. Do we really want to make our city sterile?
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Old 05-30-2006, 09:13 PM   #5
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there's already a Super Stop & Shop at East Broadway and L street, not far from this Waterside Place location.
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Old 06-09-2006, 04:50 AM   #6
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Hynes, Vornado will team up to redevelop downtown Filene'sBy Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Globe Staff | June 9, 2006

John B. Hynes III, who struck gold developing the One Lincoln St. office tower in Boston, confirmed yesterday he will join forces with urban retail powerhouse Vornado Realty Trust to redevelop the historic Filene's site downtown.

``We have a handshake agreement with them," Hynes said. ``We know we can work well together."

Vornado executives have a pending agreement to buy the four-building complex on a large block from owner Federated Department Stores Inc., but the two parties still have to agree on final terms.

If a formal joint venture agreement is signed this month, as planned, it would pair a developer with a strong record of success in the Boston area with a huge national real estate company. Together the two could realize City Hall's vision to have the Filene's block redeveloped into a vibrant mixed-use project with retail destinations.

Hynes said the team's plan is far from complete, but the general outline is that Vornado would develop considerable retail space on the block, with multiple tenants that would include a major player such as Target. Hynes would oversee development of one or possibly two towers, housing a hotel, luxury condominiums, office space, or some combination. Filene's Basement, run by a company separate from Filene's, is expected to remain in the complex.

``Our focus is on the new development for commercial or residential," said Hynes. ``They have a great, if not one of the best, track records for urban retail."

Vornado, based in New York, is one of the largest owners of real estate in the country, with 56 million square feet, of which about 16 million square feet are in more than 100 retail properties. Its holdings are mainly in New York and Washington, D.C. Vornado purchased the Boston Design Center last year for about $96 million.

The Filene's block went on the market last year after Federated, which owns Macy's stores, merged with Filene's parent company and said it would eliminate the Filene's brand, convert most stores to Macy's, and close others, including the one in downtown Boston.

The Boston Landmarks Commission last month designated the Filene's block as a landmark, setting guidelines for the size and shape of redevelopment that can take place on the land. The property is bounded by Summer, Franklin , Washington, and Hawley streets.

In particular, the main Filene's building at Washington and Summer, designed by noted Chicago architect Daniel Burnham and built in 1912, will be preserved.

A smaller brick structure, a former glass and china merchant's building on the opposite corner, also will be largely preserved. Two newer buildings are expected to be demolished.

While no detailed plan has been presented to city officials, Hynes said, the older brick building might be a good location for a hotel.

Neither Vornado nor Federated has acknowledged the pending sale of the property, but city officials and real estate executives have confirmed the transaction is underway. Vornado executives declined to comment yesterday.

No sale price has been stated, but specialists in the industry have said it is in the $90 million range.

Hynes is president of Gale International, a privately held real estate and development company formerly based in New Jersey. Gale developed One Lincoln St., near Chinatown, and leased the entire building to State Street Corp.

Gale sold the building in 2004 for more than $700 million, about double what it had cost to build.

Hynes is moving Gale's headquarters to Boston, from which he will oversee projects including New Songo City, a gargantuan creation of more than 100 million square feet of development on 1,500 acres of land reclaimed from the Pacific Ocean near Incheon, South Korea.

He said Gale and Vornado have never done a joint project before Filene's, but, ``there is some mutual respect for both companies, and some personal relationships that date back a long time."
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Old 06-23-2006, 06:50 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Globe
Mourning the passing of Filene's

By Michael Levenson, Globe Staff | June 23, 2006

They came in dark clothing, some clutching scraps of paper on which they had scribbled heartfelt remarks. Gathered in a circle, they recalled the happy memories of the past: the humming escalators, the powerful central air conditioning, the extravagant holiday window displays.

The occasion was the unveiling of a small green plaque commemorating the demise of a beloved nonagenarian, Filene's department store.

Presided over by city officials, misty-eyed store employees, and shoppers wearing expressions of mourning, the occasion had the look and feel of a funeral.

And like a funeral, the service prompted serious reflection on what has changed in Downtown Crossing since Filene's opened in 1912.

Once a robust center of shopping, housed fortress-like in a towering Beaux Arts-style building, Filene's will be known to visitors in the future by a 12-inch metal marker, the same kind that commemorate Samuel Adams' s house on Winter Street and the Old State House just blocks away.

For many passing by yesterday's event, that fact brought the end of an era into sharp focus. Some said the moment was part of a larger story of a downtown that has become almost indistinguishable from any mall in America.

Already gone from Downtown Crossing are Jordan Marsh and its muffins, small restuarants like Dini's Seafood, and countless hole-in-the-wall men's shirt and shoe stores. Now, a new generation reigns: Starbuck's, Strawberries, Barnes & Noble .

``It's not what it once was," said Dutch Holland, 60, an office worker who was chomping on a sausage sandwich in Downtown Crossing yesterday. ``The suburban mall killed off the entire square, and the consequence of that has been the slow degradation in town here. It's an in-town mall for the kids."

Joe Dougherty, 26, who works at State Street Bank in Downtown Crossing, was also saddened, not only because he will have to look elsewhere for a place to buy his shirts and ties.

``It will have an empty feeling, not being Filene's anymore," he said. ``Something that is part of the city is gone."

At the ceremony, Mayor Thomas M. Menino put his arm around Marion Carey, a clerk at Filene's for 55 years, and lifted a black cloth from the plaque, mounted on the side of Filene's near the corner of Washington and Summer streets. Then he read aloud the inscription, which pays homage to the store's founder, William Filene, a Polish immigrant, and his knack for turning a small clothier into a giant of ``retail innovation."

Last year, Federated Department Stores, which owns Macy's, announced that it would close Filene's, probably sometime this fall, as part of an $11 billion deal to acquire Filene's owner, the May Co. Although developers have submitted bids to turn the sprawling emporium into offices, luxury condos, or a combination of the two, Menino said it is not yet clear what will take the store's place. Operated by a different company, Filene's Basement will remain; it has a lease until about 2025.

``Filene's upstairs, where our parents bought our F irst Communion clothes and bought our white shoes in those days -- we'll always have the memory of coming here with our families, for a long time," Menino told the crowd, which included curious shoppers and the store's former general manager.

But it was hard to know how many would remember Filene's. As soon as the unveiling concluded, Downtown Crossing resumed its din and blur. Twentysomethings, listening to iPods, rushed past the plaque, oblivious; the calls of street vendors hawking sunglasses and popcorn filled the air, and hungry tourists headed for McDonald's or Sbarro.

Brian W. J. LeMay -- executive director of The Bostonian Society, the historic preservation group that sponsored the Filene's plaque -- said it would be hard to recapture the character of old Downtown Crossing. ``The movement is for major national firms to take over the traditional commercial areas of town," he said. ``It's certainly true over in Faneuil Hall."

Pellegrino Bondanza, 69, a street vendor, has sold vegetables in Downtown Crossing since he was a boy.

Pushing a cart from the North End yesterday, he looked around at the stores -- Bath and Body Works, Mattress Discounters, and a club called Mojitos Lounge -- and proclaimed, ``I can't get used it."

``You could see the writing on the walls here; it's going to be more condos over here," he said. ``As far as this being a place to shop, that's all done. That's all done now. You could see it coming, boy."
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Old 06-23-2006, 07:03 AM   #8
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For many of us the loss of Filenes is another sad day in the demise of the old DT crossing. On the other hand, the new DT crossing has been building for decades. Back in the 70s and 80s we still had Filenes, JM and many other stores. We also had lower Washington with a huge, dirty, dangerous red light district (sometimes fun and darkly exciting for a young man). Both are pretty much gone now, replaced with smaller shops, large residential buildings and the beginnings of theater revival. Maybe in 10 years the area will be spruced up and sterilized with good boutique shopping. and live family entertainment. Boston may never again have a either a mighty department store or a gritty little slice of life though.
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Old 06-23-2006, 07:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by statler
Now, a new generation reigns: Starbuck's, Strawberries, Barnes & Noble .
Not for much longer. Barnes & Noble closes next Friday. They are having a clearance sale too.
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Old 06-23-2006, 07:38 AM   #10
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Not for much longer. Barnes & Noble closes next Friday. They are having a clearance sale too.
Closing June 30th. :cry:
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Old 06-25-2006, 01:44 AM   #11
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We have the same problem here. Marshall Fields, a Chicago tradition, is gone the way Filenes has as Federated replaced it.

Why has Barnes and Nobles closed?
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Old 06-25-2006, 06:07 AM   #12
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It's not the same. Your store is staying open, though with a different name. Ours is closing.

B&N's downtown store is old -- I've read that it was the first B&N to open outside New York, in the late 1970s. It shows its age, especially when compared to Borders three blocks away, or the new B&N at Prudential Center. For instance, it has no coffee shop in it.
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Old 07-10-2006, 11:36 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Globe
Filene's block in Downtown Crossing sold to New York realty firm for $100m

Federated Department Stores Inc., which owns Macy's, said today it has completed the $100 million sale of its Filene's store in Boston's Downtown Crossing to Vornado Realty Trust.

The Filene's site is near a Macy's, and Federated decided to sell the property after it acquired Filene's parent company last year. With this agreement, Federated said it has announced buyers for 57 of the 80 duplicate locations that resulted from its acquisition.

Based in New York, Vornado is one of the largest owners of real estate in the country. Last year, Vornado purchased the Boston Design Center.

Last month, the Globe reported that Vornado was teaming up with local developer John B. Hynes III to redevelop the Filene's site. Hynes said then that the team is exploring ways to redevelop the site into a mixed-use project with retail, including possibly a Target store, housing, and a hotel.
(By Chris Reidy, Globe staff)

For a photo gallery on Filene's in Boston, click here.
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Old 07-10-2006, 02:38 PM   #14
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This is Boston Business Journal's take on this.

Vornado to buy Filene's building for $100M
Boston Business Journal - 11:33 AM EDT Monday
by Michelle Hillman
Boston Business Journal


New York's Vornado Realty Trust will buy the historic Filene's building from Federated Department Stores Inc. for $100 million.

"We finalized the agreement," Jim Sluzewski, spokesman for Federated said. "It is just now becoming a hard agreement."

The transaction, which will total about $70 million after taxes, will close in fourth quarter.

The New York real estate investment trust (NYSE: VNO) plans to redevelop and expand the 656,000-square-foot Filene's building in Downtown Crossing property for office, residential and retail use pending city approvals. Vornado stepped in and struck an agreement with Federated after another New York group failed to close the deal. In February, the group, headed by investors Robert Cayre and Alex Adjmi, publicly disclosed they were in negotiations before they officially had the building under agreement. By March, Vornado was reported to be in discussion with Federated.

"This is a very important agreement and I think it represents a really good solution for the column and will bring some new life to Downtown Crossing," Sluzewski said.

The Filene's building went on the sale block last year as part of a national divestiture of property resulting from Federated Departments Store's acquisition of May Department Stores Co., the parent company of Filene's. Federated has announced buyers for 57 of its 80 duplicate stores.

Federated will continue to operate a clearance center on the first floor of the downtown Filene's at least through summer 2006, according to a company statement. The Filene's store in Downtown Crossing will close but a two-level Filene's Basement, owned separately by Retail Ventures Inc., will remain.

Earlier this summer, the Boston Landmarks Commission designated the block where the four-building Filene's property is located as a landmark. Specifically, it stipulated the 94-year-old main Filene's building, listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, be preserved. Two of the three adjacent buildings -- which were built in the 1950s and 1970s behind the original store -- will likely be demolished, according to previous reports. The fourth building on the site, at the corner of Franklin and Hawley streets, was built in 1905 was also granted landmark status.

Though the commission has to approve changes to the outside of the buildings, including any demolition, it does not regulate use. Major retailers are said it be interested in opening a store at the building including big box retailer, Target.

Vornado, one of the country's largest owners and developers of commercial property, has been trying to break into the Boston market in a major way for years. It has, in the past, bid on a number of properties for sale including the Prudential Center and the Hancock Tower, both in the Back Bay. Last September, it made it's first acquisition in Boston with the $96 million purchase of the 552,000 square-foot Boston Design Center in South Boston from the Davis Cos. Vornado also owns a minority share of the Suffolk Downs racetrack.
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Old 07-10-2006, 11:13 PM   #15
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Vornado seals its deal for Filene?s
By Scott Van Voorhis
Boston Herald Business Reporter
Tuesday, July 11, 2006


A Big Apple real estate giant yesterday inked a final agreement for downtown Boston?s landmark Filene?s complex, setting the stage for a sweeping redevelopment of the historic site.

Vornado Realty Trust has agreed to shell out $100 million for the 1912 building, which, with additions tacked on in more recent decades, covers a key downtown block.

Vornado, which owns a nationwide real estate empire that includes Chicago?s Merchandise Mart, is expected to renovate the interior of the Filene?s building while developing a high-rise complex next to it.

That, in turn, could help revitalize a Downtown Crossing shopping district that has struggled in recent years.

?It is probably going to speak well for the whole area,? said Mark Weld, managing director for ING Clarion, which recently bought the nearby 101 Arch Street tower.

Still, any redevelopment is likely to be complicated, with the Filene?s building itself protected from demolition by its recent designation as an historic landmark.

Vornado instead would have to tear down the newer buildings.

These later additions do not share the original building?s landmark
status.

Still, exactly what form the new development will take is now being hammered out. In a press statement with the seller, Federated Department Stores, Vornado said it would be exploring office and retail development.

Vornado had previously floated the idea of a residential tower, while Mayor Thomas M. Menino has pushed for a hotel as well.

The New York developer, who is working with local builder John Hynes, is likely to pursue a Target store for the redeveloped complex, executives
said.
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Old 07-15-2006, 11:31 AM   #16
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http://www.boston.com/business/gallery/filenes_history/
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Old 07-27-2006, 04:46 AM   #17
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Filene?s developer scouts tenants for 30-story tower
By Scott Van Voorhis
Boston Herald Business Reporter
Thursday, July 27, 2006


A massive, 1-million-square-foot, mixed-use complex would become the centerpiece of a sweeping redevelopment of Boston?s landmark Filene?s complex, a top executive involved with the planning told the Herald.

New York?s Vornado Realty Trust recently nailed down a $100 million deal for the key retail block in the heart of the Downtown Crossing shopping district.

Now Vornado, and local partner and developer John Hynes, have begun to brief prospective office tenants on plans for a roughly one-million-square-foot high-rise complex.

About 500,000 to 600,000 square feet would be office space. The rest would be divvied up in a yet to be determined mix of retail space, residential units and possibly a hotel, Hynes said.

?I think the neighborhood and the city is expecting a bold project and we intend to given them one,? Hynes said.

The high-rise complex, which would likely be at least 30-stories according to one local executive, would take shape next door to the 1912 Filene?s building.

While the amount of residential and retail space is in flux, the one ?certainty? at this point is a large office component, Hynes said.

Meanwhile, the prospect of a new office high-rise has already begun to stir up interest among would-be corporate tenants.

Major law firm Ropes and Gray, on the hunt for 400,000 square feet, has already begun reviewing the possibilty of a move to a Filene?s tower, an executive said.

The focus on office space comes after earlier plans by Vornado centered on a luxury condo tower. But with the residential market softening, the New York company appears to have backed off that option, though it has not ruled out a smaller residential presence.

Ronald Perry, executive vice president of Meredith & Grew, sees the Downtown Crossing site as ripe for redevelopment into high-end office space. ?The traditional boundaries of the Financial District are expanding,? he said.
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Old 07-27-2006, 09:26 AM   #18
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The high-rise complex, which would likely be at least 30-stories according to one local executivewould take shape next door to the 1912 Filene?s building.
That's great news but I would hope for a larger residential component. I think its time that Boston sees towers that are primarily residential that top out over 400 feet. If there is such a demand for housing, than why not build all residential towers? We don't need mega tower complexes like in Dubai or in Seoul, but I think that if you want to draw more people to reside in the financial district, you should build tall, all residential towers. The residents are close to work, transportation, and entertainment and the advent of residential towers will help to make Boston a true 24-7 city.
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Old 07-27-2006, 01:10 PM   #19
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I agree. I'm surprised that the development has so much office space proposed, as I was under the assumption (or at least had a notion) that this would be primarily residential/retail with a small office component. But I suppose Vornado is taking current office market trends to heart. Can't blame 'em, and perhaps with office tenants pouring onto Washington Street it might give Downtown Crossing the clientele/retail change they apparently want. Then again maybe it'll just spur more Qdobas and Quiznos rather than Wendys...
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Old 07-27-2006, 07:51 PM   #20
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This is starting to look goo but what they need instead I think is a 600ft+ tower with office an residential space to compliment the Winthrop Tower if it ever gets going.
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