There was some interesting real estate news yesterday published in both the Wall Street Journal real estate pages and The Art Newspaper. Why the odd overlap? Well, a large development on the edge of Chelsea’s art gallery district announced that it had rented space to Paul Kasmin gallery and had room for 14 more dealers. Let’s start with Journal:
The company is aiming to build on the cachet of Manhattan’s West Chelsea art gallery scene by adding 15 new gallery spaces in and around its luxury condominium project at 520 W. 28th Street. Related also is trying out a new concept for the area. Called the High Line Nine, a galleria with a cafe, wine bar and other amenities will house nine of those gallery spaces as a collection that will offer built-out interiors and a package of services beneath the adjacent, elevated High Line park. The company declined to say how much it is spending on the new gallery space.
The open question here is what Related is trying to accomplish. The condo complex includes some very high-priced residential real estate attracted to the cachet of the art trade. Related looks to be trying to subsidize the galleries as a way to get them to move into the building. Not that they’re saying that. Instead, we’re told art galleries are a growth industry, which seems improbable given the defection of many galleries from the neighborhood to other locations or out of street-level space.
The so-called High Line Nine may be Related’s attempt to address the high cost of gallery keeping, as their representative told The Art Newspaper:
The aim, says Greg Gushee, the executive vice president of Related property company, is to create a new type of gallery complex with all facilities built in, including bars and cafes, offices, storage spaces, concierge and security. “It is a completely new-to-market concept that [will] allow domestic and international galleries to showcase their collections while we take care of all of the mundane details,” Gushee says.
Zaha Hadid luxury condo developer to create 15 galleries in New York’s Chelsea (The Art Newspaper)