OLD NAVY, TRISTAN & AMERICA, COLORADO INK LEASES IN SOHO
Byline: Sharon Edelson
NEW YORK — The SoHo phenomenon continues, but the action has moved from West Broadway to Broadway, where Old Navy Clothing Corp., Tristan & America and Woolworth’s Colorado will open stores.
Old Navy signed a lease for a 25,000-square-foot space at 503-515 Broadway between Spring and Broome Streets in SoHo, the building’s landlord said Thursday.
“The lease was signed with the Gap,” said Liang Liang, the building’s owner. “Old Navy is going to take it. They have six months to renovate the place.” Reports that Old Navy was interested in that site appeared in these columns as far back as March 3.
Old Navy executives could not be reached for comment.
There have been rumors that Old Navy might add another 25,000 square feet to the store by moving into the second floor or by expanding into a vacant lot next door at 501 Broadway.
“For the time being, that’s all the space they’re taking,” Liang said.
The store, which is directly across the street from Canal Jeans, will be Old Navy’s second unit in Manhattan.
The first store, a 30,000-square-foot unit, opened on Sixth Avenue and 18th Street in September 1995.
While the two locations — 18th Street and SoHo — are roughly a mile apart, retail experts pointed out that the Sixth Avenue store attracts a broad range of customers, and the Broadway store would attract a much younger crowd, including New York University students.
Gap is aggressively expanding Old Navy, along with its Banana Republic division, because the Gap division is reaching the saturation point in many areas of the country.
Colorado, Woolworth’s new specialty store concept for outdoor clothing, footwear and equipment from manufacturers such as North Face and Patagonia, will open a two-level, 8,000-square-foot unit at 591 Broadway in the former Gig Wear space, real estate sources said.
Woolworth executives were unavailable for comment.
Tristan & America has signed a lease to open a store at 560 Broadway, a 10,000-square-foot space currently occupied by Duggal, a visual imaging company, said president Baldeve Duggal.
According to Duggal, Tristan will take over the space on Jan. 1 and open its store in the spring.
Duggal Downtown will move to the lower level and be renamed Duggal Underground, he said.
Zara, the Spanish retailer of trendy fashion, had been eying Duggal last year, but the company has now focused on the Williams-Sonoma space at 580 Broadway, sources said.
“Williams-Sonoma is a little too staid for the neighborhood,” a retail expert said.
“Zara is definitely interested and made Williams-Sonoma an offer they couldn’t refuse,” he saud
Zara officials could not be reached for comment.
Lower Broadway in SoHo has become a hot shopping area since Banana Republic, Nine West and Pottery Barn joined A/X Armani Exchange and Dean & DeLuca.
Kenneth Cole opened a store at 597 Broadway, and Victoria’s Secret opened a unit in the former Nature Company Store at Broadway and Spring Street.
On Thursday, Guess opened a 7,000-square-foot flagship on Broadway between Prince and Spring Streets.
Real estate experts said much of the traffic on Broadway is concentrated farther north, but they pointed out that an Old Navy unit would become a magnet for moving the action south, below Spring Street.
“Lower Broadway is certainly one of the hottest neighborhoods in town from a retail sales perspective,” said Mark Finkelstein, a broker at Retail Strategies.
“There’s much more demand than there is space. That’s why you’re beginning to see some of the key money deals,” he noted.