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Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Brown Out

The only person I've 'known' to have an account at Brown Brothers Harriman was a long-forgotten character in a John O'Hara novel. You get the idea. But the Main Line was derailed long ago, and it's not surprising that this vestige of that past Wasp elite is downsizing.
 -- Richard Carreño
The following is excerpted from the Philadelphia Business Journal:

Pearl Properties has plans to convert offices that now house Brown Brothers Harriman Co. at 1529 Walnut St. in Center City into retail space, giving that retail corridor a much needed boost. Space is tight along Walnut Street.

“There’s only a few thousand square feet available,” said Larry Steinberg, a retail broker with CBRE Inc./Fameco, who is marketing the space at 1529 Walnut with colleague Christina Zipf. “Everything else is spoken for.”

The property joins a long line of other bank buildings in and around that neighborhood that have seen first floor and mezzanine space go retail. For example, 1500 and 1518 Walnut, and 1338 and 1426 Chestnut.

The private bank, for which the building is named, is relocating its offices to another building in Center City, making the space available for the first time in nearly ninety years. The six-story building totals 35,424 square feet and 16,348 square feet across the mezzanine and second floor is slated to be marketed for retail use and rents won’t be cheap. Some first-floor rents along Walnut Street have come in excess of $200 a square foot.

The exterior of the building will be changed to make it more appealing to retailers. The space will be marketed to a single user and be available in September.

Brown Brothers Harriman
Brown Brothers Harriman was established in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1818. Through strategic investments and innovative business decisions, we have transitioned from leaders in merchant banking and transatlantic trade to an integrated worldwide financial services firm.  We honor our  past and we try to learn from it. But, in the day-to-day management of our business, we try to exercise enlightened opportunism. Because we are not beholden to stockholders, we try to take the long view and do what is best for our clients and the Partnership.