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  Topic: Marriott Marquis Lease Could Cost
Taxpayers $344.9 Million, Audit Says
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Marriott Marquis Lease Could Cost
Taxpayers $344.9 Million, Audit Says

New York Times, by Charles V. Bagli

Original Article

Posted By:LittleHoodedMonk, 2/12/2013 1:26:13 PM

The Marriott Marquis, the 50-story convention hotel in Times Square, sits atop some of the most valuable land in all of New York City, if not the world. But because of a lease signed by the Giuliani administration in 1998, Marriott can buy the property from the city for only $19.9 million, one-tenth of its current $193 million value, according to a new audit by the city comptroller, John C. Liu. Mr. Liu said the problems with the 1998 lease could end up costing taxpayers $344.9 million in lost rent and proceeds from the sale of the property. Marriott, whose Marquis Times Square generates more revenue

Comments:
Of course the blame for this is placed on the Giuliani administration and a non-existent comparative analysis by the then Economic Development Corporation. I´m surprised that there is no mention of Trump making an earlier bid for this property when it was allegedly in a "bad neighborhood" for tourists. I may not be schooled in economics, but know that Times Square is probably one of the most recognizable places on the earth & property will always be of highest value.

      


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Reply 1 - Posted by: hybernicus, 2/12/2013 1:44:07 PM     (No. 9172394)

To judge the situation fairly, one needs to know the condition of the property at the time of the lease as well as the terms of the lease. Often, a tenant will pay above-market rent in exchange for a lower price on a purchase option.

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Reply 2 - Posted by: dulac, 2/12/2013 1:44:36 PM     (No. 9172395)

seems like an argument could be made that the presence of Marriott there (with their considerable reputation for reliable quality and name recognition/brand equity) is part of the reason why the real estate in the area has grown in value.

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Reply 3 - Posted by: Attila DiMedici, 2/12/2013 1:47:43 PM     (No. 9172404)

Mr. Liu is planning on running for mayor in the next election. He has had several scandals in his recent past (I have not been following them closely, so I am not sure to what degree his behavior has been scandalous and to what degree he has merely been caught up in the scandal). He is looking for something to give him a positive view for looking out for the city.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: LouD, 2/12/2013 2:14:03 PM     (No. 9172462)

Pity the poor Indians who sold Manhattan for $24.00 worth of junk jewelry. They got screwed more than the taxpayers of today.
(BTW, I call them "Indians" and not the PC words, because at the time of the sale, that is what they were called by historians.)

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Reply 5 - Posted by: Charactercounts, 2/12/2013 4:26:44 PM     (No. 9172690)

I remember walking through Times Square on the way to see a play, and seeing a woman shooting heroin into her veins not far from where the Marriott stands now. The area was a war zone, full of junkies, prostitutes, porno shops and lowlifes.

Those were different times. That Marriott and others risked capital in building there is what saved Times Square.



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Reply 6 - Posted by: oh-heck, 2/12/2013 5:59:16 PM     (No. 9172867)

The Marriott reached a long term agreement with the city that has created one of the most valuable pieces of property in the world and has paid large amounts of money in taxes over the course of many years. In addition, the city has collected billions of taxes on surrounding real estate. If Marriott buys the property, the city will get 19.9 million from the sale. How is this costing taxpayers anything? This is like leasing a house with an option to buy. You replace the roof, the AC, the hot water heaters, the flooring, the wall coverings, the kitchen counters and appliances etc. You spend $20,000 but it increases the value by $40,000. The landlord must live by the terms of the lease and did nothing to increase the value.

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Reply 7 - Posted by: Brittany, 2/12/2013 6:54:52 PM     (No. 9172981)

If the city got rid of rent control, the property taxes would skyrocket. As it is, certain people are paying a pittance for some of the most valuable living space in Manhattan. Much more important than this suit.

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