Monday, September 17, 2007

Forest Hills vs. Atlas Park

Interesting NY Times article last year about Atlas Park, with many mentions of Forest Hills.

Bernadette Cusack, a spokeswoman for Amish Market, said the company had spent nearly three years looking for space in Forest Hills but gave up because it could not find a site there that offered "a decent amount of parking."

Other interesting quotes:

Mr. Hemmerdinger says some retailers have been reluctant to enter neighborhoods in Queens that sit outside long-established retail areas like Forest Hills.

"We've had to work at getting the tenants we want here to pay attention," he said in a recent interview. "Frankly, it's been a grind."

Key phrase - "tenants we want here" not just "tenants".

Rents at Atlas Park are competitive, at $40 to $50 a square foot, Mr. Hemmerdinger said.

Patrick Breslin, the president of the retail group at GVA Williams, a real estate services company in Manhattan, said the rents were considerably lower than those for shops in Forest Hills, which run $125 to $135 a square foot.

The company says it is working to attract some of the large high-fashion retailers that cater to both men and women, like Banana Republic.

They got ArtWorld, Coldstone Creamery, and Amish Market, nothing to stop them from swooping up Banana Republic. Also, judging from Atlas Park's job listings site, everyone seems to be doing okay.

Is Atlas Park done raiding the Forest Hills cookie jar? Is anyone here working as hard as Hemmerdinger to get the right stores for the community?

I know one thing, our hometown boy Heskel Elias (who I like) now has a pretty interesting 36 year-old rival in Damon Hemmerdinger. It'll be intesting to see who gets the next big retailer. Better get to to work on that hotel Heskel.