Thought Leadership

Christina Chiu Talks Value Proposition and NYC’s Resiliency with Commercial Observer

June 7, 2024

ESRT President Christina Chiu joined a panel with other executives to discuss CRE capital markets and strategies to attract tenants at Commercial Observer’s Spring State of Office Forum.

In the hour-long panel, Christina spoke about tenant requirements, companies’ adaptation of artificial intelligence, and the resiliency of New York City.

See highlights from the conversation below!

On Tenant Desires

“There’s a definitive flight to quality at every price point. It’s simply not realistic to expect that every tenant can afford to pay $200 per square foot. However, the commonality is that whatever they wish to pay, they want the best that they can get. So, the onus is on the landlords to run through the filter. Are you well located with the right floorplates, amenitized, and energy efficient, and can you really cater to your tenants and do you have financial stability as a landlord?”

On Value Proposition

“Not every building deserves its own gym, its own lounge, or a whole suite of amenities, so return on capital will definitely be an important consideration as landlords think about what submarket and price point they’re in and whether it makes sense to put in those amenities. Another consideration is a landlord’s financial stability and service orientation. The days of ‘build it and they will come’ are over. You have to offer a value proposition and you have to provide service to your tenants and make sure what you’re offering makes sense.”

On New York City

“ESRT sees New York from multiple lenses – from office tenants and retail to tourism and residential. It is extremely vibrant. And when you line up the different urban cities across the country, New York has actually gained market share in terms of vibrancy and resiliency. When you survey tech companies for their number one relocation market among their employees, New York is a top market. We have unparalleled commuting access with our subway system. It’s the only city that you can completely operate without a car, and that’s very, very compelling. The way you can access talent is superior–both in terms of proximity to universities, but also companies’ ability to hire from different geographic areas because of our commute system. With an office in Manhattan, you get talent from Connecticut, Long Island, New Jersey, Westchester. All of that is extremely powerful for casting a broader net on ability to hire.”

Read more about Commercial Observer’s Spring State of Office Forum here.

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