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Borders' closures put prime real estate back on market


Borders Credit: Nicholas Grant

As Manhattan’s last two Borders write their final chapters, the bookstores’ retail replacements are likely to be new, shiny — and not nearly as intellectually stimulating.

The Borders stores at Two Penn Plaza and the Time Warner Center are mammoth — more than 20,000 square feet each — and enjoy such high-profile perches that they’ll fetch market prices from new tenants, between $150 and $200 per square foot, retail experts said.

"Borders was dying on the vine, so a new tenant is gonna add excitement to the areas," said Faith Hope Consolo, the chair of retail leasing and sales at Prudential Douglas Elliman. ”Onto the new and the shiny," she added.

Real estate mogul Barbara Corcoran sees both spaces drawing “another big-box retailer with the same boring merchandise at the same boring prices everyone else is charging," she said.

The retail makeovers will add to neighborhood sameness pervading the city.

"Nothing exciting happens in large spaces anymore," Corcoran said.

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