Prudential Venture Buys Manhattan Property in High Line Bet

Jun 09, 2014 3:57 pm ET

(Updates with Tesla, Victoria Beckham as tenants in the sixth paragraph.)

June 9 (Bloomberg) -- Prudential Financial Inc. said a joint venture including the insurer’s real-estate arm purchased property in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood for $160 million.

Prudential Real Estate Investors and L&L Holding Co. bought three interconnected buildings on West 25th Street comprising 200,000 square feet (18,600 square meters), the companies said today in a statement. Stephen Ross’s Related Cos. said it was the seller.

The property is adjacent to the High Line, the elevated park built on the site of a former rail line, with plans for an extension that will trace the western edge of Hudson Yards, Related’s $20 billion development. The planned 17 million- square-foot project is driving investment on Manhattan’s far west side, a largely industrial section that developers are transforming into an office district and residential enclave.

“The unique location of these offices in one of New York’s most prominent art-gallery districts, combined with the favorable market conditions, and the value L&L brings, made this an extremely attractive transactions for our investors,” David Pahl, a managing director with Prudential Real Estate Investors, said in the statement.

The operation had $41 billion of net assets under management as of Dec. 31, according to Newark, New Jersey-based Prudential, the second-largest U.S. life insurer. The Chelsea property was purchased on behalf of German institutional investors, the Prudential unit said.

Tesla, Beckham

The office properties purchased by Prudential, which were constructed between 1910 and 1917, were renovated over the last two years and have views of the High Line, the company said. Tenants include Target Corp. and fashion designer Victoria Beckham’s company, said John Chartier, a Prudential spokesman. Tesla Motors Inc. has a ground-floor showroom there, he said.

Related purchased the properties in 2012 for $93 million, said Joanna Rose, a spokeswoman for the company.