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Port Authority completes $800 million sale in World Trade Center retail to Westfield

NEW YORK - The Port Authority today announced the closing of the sale of the agency’s remaining 50 percent interest in the World Trade Center retail project to The Westfield Group. The transaction reflects the Port Authority’s continuing efforts to return to its core transportation mission and to divest itself of its non-core ventures.

As previously announced, the sale encompasses approximately 365,000 square feet of retail space located across multiple levels within the site, including bi-level retail offerings in the newly opened West Concourse pedestrian corridor, and a major street-level and above-grade presence along Church Street, Cortland Way and Dey Street in Towers 3 and 4.  A portion of the sale proceeds is contingent on delivery of the above-grade retail space in Tower 3.  An additional 90,000 square feet of retail will be sold to Westfield for additional consideration when Tower 2 is developed in the future.

"Today's announcement marks another significant milestone at the World Trade Center site,” said Port Authority Vice Chairman Scott Rechler.  “Since 2011, we have worked to implement strict financial and construction management controls, resolve past disputes, and restructure prior agreements in a manner more favorable to the Port Authority.  This transaction will allow the Port Authority to realize a gain and recycle capital from real estate development to transportation infrastructure,"

When the retail complex opens in 2015, it is expected to include a mix of 150 world-class brands and dining options.
“This transaction will allow us to reinvest capital from real estate into transportation projects that will fulfill our mission of efficiently moving people and goods around the region,” said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye.

Today’s closing comes three months after the agency approved the sale of its 50 percent interest for $800 million dollars to Westfield, which represents a 30 percent premium in value to the joint venture entered into with Westfield in 2012.  This sale brings Westfield’s total investment in the retail complex to more than $1.4 billion. In addition to the sale price, the Port Authority will share in a portion of future retail revenues should the project exceed certain return thresholds within the first 5 years.

The sale does not impact the Port Authority’s ownership of the World Trade Center Transportation Hub. When completed in 2015, the Transportation Hub will be the most integrated network of underground pedestrian walkways in New York City, seamlessly connecting more than 300,000 daily commuters and millions of annual visitors from around the world to PATH, multiple ferries and to 11 MTA subway lines and the redeveloped Fulton Street Transit Center.