FINANCIAL DISTRICT — The long-awaited Fulton Center will feature shops and restaurants geared toward residents, not tourists, officials said this week.
Representatives for retail giant Westfield Group, chosen by the MTA to manage commercial space in the $1.4 billion transit hub, said they have not yet signed any leases, but hope to launch the new amenities as soon as the fall.
“We want the shops to have a very broad appeal,” said George Giaquinto, a vice president of development for Westfield, while discussing the retail options at a Community Board 1 meeting Wednesday evening. “We want these stores to benefit the neighborhood — they’re not targeted for tourists.”
Giaquinto said the company plans to open at least one sit-down restaurant, possibly on the second floor of the transit hub. Westfield also plans to have about 16 carts and kiosks selling wares in the complex, in addition to the shops.
The transit hub is set to open on June 26, but the more than 180,000 square feet of commercial space will take several more months to complete.
Westfield will manage space in the new station at Broadway and Fulton Street as well as in the restored Corbin Building at Broadway and John Street; a station entrance building at Broadway and Dey Street; and a corridor under Dey Street that will eventually connect to the World Trade Center.
Westfield, which also owns all of the retail space in the World Trade Center complex, will be responsible for leasing office space in the historic Corbin Building as well. Giaquinto said the company believes the office space is “really perfect for tech companies” — keeping with a trend of those companies migrating Downtown over the past two years, he said.
When asked about whether the shops would provide services to residents, like a dry cleaner, Giaquinto said he thought those types of stores were more likely to be represented at the WTC retail sites, but it wasn’t out of the question for the Fulton Center.
He said he hopes to bring shops that aren’t represented Downtown, whether they are national or local, and that would benefit the Downtown community.
The station will integrate five subway stations and nine subway lines, and it will eventually connect to the WTC PATH hub.
Stores interested in leasing space can contact Westfield through its website, and will receive a response within seven days, Giaquinto said.