The New Manhattan Office Trend: Penthouses

“An Art form we have been evolving for decades,” Rob Speyer, Tishman Speyer’s Chief Executive remarked when considering how Tishman Speyer continues to uncover value at its assets. Keiko Morris at The Wall Street Journal recently wrote about 2 midtown projects. The first at 200 Park Ave, Tishman Speyer was able to leverage new technology and move machine rooms to develop a spectacular, 24,000 square foot penthouse on the 58th floor.

Tishman Chief Executive Rob Speyer spearheads a new initiative: Penthouses built by tapping undeveloped space, unlocking additional real estate value.

The second project currently in development on the 43rd floor of 520 Madison Ave will more than double the 7,100 square-foot space once dedicated to mechanical equipment and build a 21,000 square-foot penthouse with a 2,200 square-foot terrace and views of Central Park.

“Typically, the penthouse additions feature high ceilings, tons of light through glass facades or large windows and connecting outdoor space. Landlords often have to be creative in finding the space to build these structures, sometimes moving mechanical equipment to another part of the building, tapping undeveloped space or transferring air rights from adjacent lots”, said real-estate lawyer Jonathan Mechanic in the Wall Street Journal article published on April 16th, 2017.

These renovations are never simple, considering their logistical scope, and without disrupting the tenants in the building, however finding and creating these types of opportunities are part of the fabric of the Tishman Speyer culture.  “We’re always looking around the corner and pursuing ways to unlock additional value,” Rob Speyer told the Wall Street Journal.

The penthouse at 200 Park Avenue was quickly leased and it is anticipated that the 520 Madison Avenue penthouse with a terrace will draw significant interest as well.

“These office penthouse additions are part of a broader push by owners to carve out more dynamic amenity spaces to appeal to tenants looking to embellish their brands and recruit top employees”, said Brian Waterman, vice chairman at real-estate-services firm Newmark Grubb Knight Frank in the Wall Street Journal article.

Of the 200 Park Avenue Penthouse, “You feel like you can reach out and grab the spire of the Chrysler Building,” said Tishman Chief Executive Rob Speyer. This is certainly a unique amenity and has an appeal that is unparalleled.

The New Manhattan Office Trend: Penthouses (2017) by Keiko Morris. Retrieved from:

Rob Speyer talks the future of transportation in cities

In a speech at the Urban Land Institute’s 2016 Asia Pacific Summit in Shanghai, Rob Speyer discussed the important connection between transportation and real estate in cities across the world.

With an enormous number of people expected to move to cities in the future, mayors are in a unique position to craft smart, sustainable transportation policies – and Speyer noted that connectivity is key.

“Inspired by China’s high-speed rail, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti came right here, to Shanghai, to learn how to move more people, in less time, with fewer cars,” said Speyer. “Shanghai is where Garcetti learned how to cut congestion and the air pollution that’s been suffocating L.A. for decades. The reason why the mayor has created a plan to build thirty-two miles of subways in L.A.—get the locals out of their cars and into city trains.”

“In just two decades, L.A. hopes to cut the use of private cars by 1.7 million miles each day. That’s the equivalent of six daily trips to the moon and back. It’s a winning formula. Fewer cars, less exhaust, faster trips, and it will mean a boost in real estate values.”

Speyer explained how real estate and transportation are becoming more connected every day and commended the mayors of Shanghai, Los Angeles and Rio de Janeiro for their foresight on these issues.

“So where does this lead us? If the 20th century was about driving more cars, the 21st century will be about getting those cars off the road,” said Speyer. “Where cars once helped cities to thrive and to grow, too many cars are threatening to choke that growth. That’s why in cities like Shanghai, Shenzhen, L.A., and Rio, the car of the future has become the train.”

“Transportation has always been a big part of real estate. But as more and more people jam themselves into fewer and fewer cities, transportation will become inseparable from real estate. That means get ready for more deals like the one between Vanke and Shenzhen Metro. And it also means, that what was once viewed as a perk —safe, reliable access to transportation— is becoming a requirement.”

Watch Rob Speyer’s whole speech, which can be viewed below:




Rob Speyer Discusses The Importance Of Global Collaboration Among Mayors


Rob Speyer recently discussed the significance of worldwide collaboration among mayors around the globe at the Urban Land Institute’s recent 2016 Asia Pacific Summit, which took place in Shanghai, China.

“From Shenzhen to Rio, from Los Angeles to Shanghai, these smart mayors can drive big change, because mayors are often in a better position than even national leaders to help each other get things done,” said Speyer. “We’ve all seen it. When a head of state wants to work with another head of state, it can take a long time. On the other hand, when a mayor wants to work directly with another mayor, they can get things done quickly. They can cut through the bureaucracy, the protocol, even the geopolitics.”

Speyer highlighted the importance of mayors to actively engage colleagues from throughout the world to improve their respective cities, noting the connections made between the mayors of Los Angeles, Rio de Janeiro and Shanghai when talking about developing cities of the future.

“Mayor Garcetti is tackling the age-old L.A. problem of traffic — with Shanghai ideas,” he said. “They invested heavily in building public transit, encouraging people to leave their cars and take buses and subways, easing the gridlock. In recent decades, Shanghai has built public transportation to replace private cars, and they’ve invested heavily in development around transit hubs, making a more livable city.”

Speyer called on city mayors to start addressing their excessive traffic and pollution issues before it’s too late.

“We need mayors with energy, confidence, a sense of destiny — mayors who can help all of us see around those corners,” said Speyer. “Because in our increasingly smart world, filled with smartphones and smart cars, a smart city needs a smart mayor.”

Rob Speyer’s whole speech can be viewed below:




Rob Speyer Announces Tishman Speyer Moving Ahead With Major Long Island City Project

Rob Speyer announced today that Tishman Speyer is moving ahead with construction of its 1.1 million square foot office and retail project in Long Island City. Construction of the new project, which includes two 27-story towers designed by Raul De Armas of MdeAS Architects, will begin in early 2017 with completion anticipated in 2019.

The towers will be connected by a four-story podium and will include a mix of retail, complemented by a food hall, restaurant and parking garage — providing numerous amenities to local workers and residents in the vibrant mixed-use neighborhood.

“Thanks to the City of New York’s investment in the area’s infrastructure, enlightened policy decisions and the active support of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, the local community and its elected officials, Long Island City has become a model for 21st Century urban development,” Speyer said.

“Tishman Speyer is proud to continue our role in unlocking the area’s full potential as one of the most dynamic, live-work-play neighborhoods, not just in Queens but in all of New York City.”

Tishman Speyer is now the largest developer of both commercial and residential space in Long Island City, being responsible for 3.5 million square feet of development in Long Island City since 2003.

More information: Tishman Speyer Moving Ahead With Construction Of 1.1 Million Square Foot Office And Retail Project In Long Island City

The Spiral

In February, Tishman Speyer announced plans for a 65-story building in the heart of Manhattan’s West Side. Bjarke Ingles, designer of The Spiral, provides an in-depth look at the building that sits a block away from the north end of Manhattan’s High Line Park.

Additional  information can be found here.

Tishman Speyer Releases Global Sustainability Report

Earlier this month, Tishman Speyer released its third Global Sustainability report.

Tishman Speyer was awarded a 2015 ENERGY STAR partner of the year award, which honors companies that demonstrate the best energy saving practices across the industry. In addition, Tishman Speyer hit a number of company landmarks in 2015, including: First LEED Gold for Existing Building in NY (357 Hudson St.), first building to achieve LEED Gold in South America (Rochavera Corporate Towers, Brazil), and first tower to achieve LEED Platinum in Frankfurt (Taunusturm, Germany).

“At Tishman Speyer, we believe that sustainability in the built environment is increasingly critical to our future,” said CEO Rob Speyer in the report. “The result of this belief has been our commitment to delivering beautiful, healthy and efficient buildings since our inception.” Numerous Tishman Speyer buildings have made a positive impact on the environment, improving efficiency and meeting the unique challenges of the urban landscape.

“Whether constructing new buildings or redeveloping existing ones, we strive to do so in a way that minimizes impact on the environment at every stage of the building life cycle, while maximizing sustainable value,” said Speyer.

Tishman Speyer Impact:

  • 52 million square feet certified portfolio under LEED, BREEAM, or HQE
  • Energy consumption between 2012 and 2013 was reduced by an average of 2.5%
  • All seven eligible funds received a green start under GRESB in 2014

Read more at:







Tishman Speyer Looking to Expand Vanke Relationship

After the signing of Tishman Speyer’s first joint venture with China Vanke, Rob Speyer told Bloomberg News he hopes this will lead to more collaborations

Tishman Speyer Closes First RMB Fund – Real Estate Fund Capitalized Solely By Chinese Investors

Tishman Speyer, a leading global real estate developer and investor, has announced the closing of the first RMB Fund by a foreign developer. The firm raised 1.2 billion RMB solely from Chinese investors and will invest it in the development of a prime site in Suzhou. The project will consist of two towers totaling 114,300 square meters (1.23 million square feet), featuring both commercial office and retail space along with luxury residences.
Hwabao Trust, a leading trust company in China, is a cornerstone LP investor in the fund. Noah Holdings Limited (NYSE: NOAH) serves as the fund’s exclusive financial advisor.

The project site is located in the Suzhou Industrial Park (“SIP”), in Suzhou’s central business district on the west bank of Golden Rooster Lake. It consists of two parcels straddling Suhua Road that will have direct access to a major subway line that began operation earlier this week.

The buildings will be constructed according to LEED Gold criteria and the office space will be marketed primarily to prominent multinational and domestic companies, as Tishman Speyer has done successfully in its developments throughout the world.

“The establishment of this fund is a watershed event in the evolution of China’s capital markets,” commented Tishman Speyer Co-CEOs Jerry Speyer and Rob Speyer. “In addition, the ongoing economic growth in the immediate region and the local infrastructure improvements that are underway make this a very good time to develop superior-quality properties to serve the needs of world-class tenants. We look forward to adding a landmark to the superb SIP master plan.”

Brazil is developing so fast.

“Brazil is developing so fast the existing stock is only now starting to meet the quality level that multi-national companies need and expect,” said Rob Speyer, president and co-chief executive of Tishman Speyer.

Full article click here.

Another Step Forward by Tishman Speyer, Led by Jerry and Rob Speyer, as a Top Developer of Iconic Properties in Europe

Rob Speyer Tishman Speyer FrankfurtJoint venture partners Tishman Speyer and Commerz Real AG  laid the foundation stone for the “TaunusTurm” office tower, which will be the latest addition to Frankfurt skyline. Located in the heart of Frankfurt’s banking district, the 40-story, 650,000 square-foot (60,000-square-meter) tower is scheduled to be delivered by the end of 2013.

In the presence of 350 invited guests, Petra Roth, Mayor of the City of Frankfurt, and architect Martin Gruber joined Jerry and Rob Speyer, Co-CEOs of Tishman Speyer, as well as Jochen Klösges, a member of the Commerzbank AG Board of Managing Directors, in lowering the copper foundation stone capsule through a Plexiglas tube into the 10-meter-deep construction pit.

For Tishman Speyer, TaunusTurm represents the third phase of what has proven to be an enormously successful development initiative in Frankfurt, preceded by the MesseTurm and OpernTurm projects.

To be located at the corner of Neue Mainzer Strasse/Taunustor and the “Wallanlagen”, the park belt, TaunusTurm will be the first building on Neue Mainzer Strasse to have its 13-meter-high entrance facing the adjacent park. The slender tower with a white natural stone façade, which was designed by the Frankfurt firm Gruber + Kleine-Kraneburg Architekten, is expected to be the first new high-rise in the city to be awarded LEED Platinum certification.

The construction of TaunusTurm will considerably upgrade the Wallanlagen – the adjacent former city fortifications. Part of the plot of land will be used to extend them and make them accessible by means of a new promenade along the entire row of buildings. Amenities in the form of a restaurant for staff and guests, and a business club with conference space will enhance the property. Next to the TaunusTurm, Tishman Speyer is developing a residential tower, with an entrance aligned to the park, making it a prime address on Frankfurt’s unique park belt.

Petra Roth, Mayor of the City of Frankfurt, emphasized the entrepreneurial vision of Tishman Speyer and Commerz Real. TaunusTurm, she said, integrates a new urban space for work and life into the existing fabric of the city and gifts future residents, employees and guests a great deal quality of life: “The entire development of the TaunusTurm project is infused with the notion of sustainability. It is precisely this which a center such as Frankfurt really needs: Investors who believe in the potential of the place.” Mayor Roth insists that such vision will spell a strong competitive edge: “In keeping with the claim of ‘Be Inspired’ TaunusTurm is already a massive success for the City of Frankfurt as it not only creates hundreds of jobs but at the end of the day will be an impressive new landmark for the city.”

In a joint statement, Jerry and Rob Speyer, Co-CEOs of Tishman Speyer, said, “Frankfurt is one of Europe’s great cities and its importance as a key financial center will undoubtedly keep growing during the coming years. We continue to pursue a strategy of developing and owning premier properties in world-class cities, and this project is consistent with that strategy, while it satisfies Frankfurt’s growing need for high quality office space that is architecturally superior, flexible, efficient and sustainable.”

Jochen Klösges, Member of the Management Board of Commerzbank AG, highlighted the special location of TaunusTurm and the responsibility that comes with it, commenting, “It has been of major concern to us to implement a project in this prominent location in the banking district on a property formerly from our corporate portfolio that would guarantee complete success. The conditions have been met perfectly: The striking architecture, the quality of the space, and the alignment toward Taunusanlage are proof of the great attractiveness of TaunusTurm.”

“Be Inspired – by seeing what is! We as architects are constantly moved forward by our visions. Creating a new location, imagining it from nothing, now that is always the search for the special, for the essentials. At this location, right here, we see the great opportunity to design and build a sculptural high-rise, a shape that contained multiple uses, right in the heart of the city of Frankfurt. TaunusTurm brings all this together and can be read as a metaphor for contemporary economics and aesthetics,” commented Martin Gruber of Gruber + Kleine-Kraneburg Architekten.