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September 18, 2019Cart

Business

by Westchester County Business Journal
by WCBJ

George Comfort & Sons buys Reckson Executive Park for $55 million

2 and 3 International Drive in Rye Brook, part of the six-building Reckson Executive Park purchased by George Comfort & Sons for $55 million. Photo by Ryan Deffenbaugh.

George Comfort & Sons is the buyer of SL Green’s Reckson Executive Park in Rye Brook, a six-building office complex totaling 560,000 square feet. The $55 million deal was first announced by the seller in April, though the buyer was not disclosed at the time.

Manhattan-based George Comfort & Sons acquired the property in a joint venture with a fund managed by DRA Advisors, according to CBRE Group Inc., which brokered the deal.

The deal boosts the company’s presence in New York City’s northern suburbs at a time when George Comfort & Sons is busy pursuing property redevelopments in White Plains, Rye Brook and Stamford.

CBRE Group Inc. announced the deal was official July 24. CBRE represented SL Green and procured the buyer. The publicly traded SL Green originally disclosed three months ago that it had sold the property, along with a two-property office complex at 115-117 Stevens Ave. in Valhalla, in deals involving two separate buyers for a total of $67 million. The company did not disclose either buyer at the time.

GHP Office Realty was the buyer for the properties at 115-117 Stevens Ave. in Valhalla, as the Business Journal reported in May.

Reckson Executive Park is named for the Long Island company that acquired the property in 1997 and held it for nine years before merging with SL Green through a $4 billion deal in 2006. Reckson now serves as SL Green’s suburban division.

The office park is directly on the New York-Connecticut border off King Street in the Rye Brook village. Its 1-6 International Drive addresses include tenants such as Xylem Inc. and The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s national office.

In back of the property, marketing and construction is underway for a project from developer Sun Homes for 85 townhomes and 25 single-family homes on a lot Reckson had once targeted for a seventh office building.

A George Comfort & Sons representative was not immediately available to comment on the purchase. In the announcement, CBRE noted the buildings received recent interior and exterior renovations.

“The tightening of the Westchester County office market, which is partly driven by the adaptive repurposing of older office product for residential, medical and retail use, coupled with increased demand stemming from Westchester’s cluster of biotech and health care businesses, bodes well for GCS to lease the remaining space at Reckson Executive Park,” said Jeffrey Dunne, a vice chairman at CBRE.

Dunne handled the deal along with Steven Bardsley and Stuart MacKenzie of CBRE’s Institutional Properties Group.

While George Comfort & Sons’ holdings are focused mainly in Manhattan office properties, the company has become increasingly active in Westchester and Fairfield counties.

This purchase marks George Comfort & Sons’ second property just in Rye Brook. The company also leads an investment partnership that plans to demolish a mostly vacant 215,000-square-foot office building at 900 King St. in the village. The office building would be replaced by a campus of senior townhouses, apartments and an assisted living facility. The village government is still reviewing the proposal.

In White Plains, George Comfort & Sons has proposed a controversial redevelopment of the former Good Counsel campus on the city’s north end. The city is still reviewing plans that call for a mix of student housing for Pace law school, luxury apartments and an assisted living facility.

And in Stamford, the company recently received zoning approvals for a plan to build a Life Time Fitness center by demolishing an office property at 3 High Ridge Park, one of the six buildings in the 570,000-square-foot office complex George Comfort & Sons owns and manages.

The company’s holdings in Westchester and Fairfield also include The Centre at Purchase, a 676,000-square-foot office park on Manhattanville Road that the company owns and manages in a joint venture with O’Connor Capital Partners. In Fairfield, the company owns Shippan Landing, a 780,000-square-foot office complex.

For SL Green, the sale of the two properties will be used toward a $1.5 billion stock repurchase program. The company’s holdings in Westchester are down to a three-building office park in Valhalla, called The Summit, and the 385,000-square-foot Reckson Metro Center at 360 Hamilton Ave. in downtown White Plains. The company also owns the seven-building Landmark Square office complex in Stamford.