2 blocks make a big difference on Hudson Street

As landlords along a stretch of Hudson Street in the West Village have pushed up rents, several long-term tenants have been forced to decamp and the number of vacancies has soared.
Meanwhile, one business pushed out by the increases has found new life just two blocks south of its longtime home in a more residential area—and at a fraction of the price.
Yoya, a high-end children’s clothing store, recently inked a 10-year lease at 605 Hudson St., between Bethune and West 12th streets, for 1,000 square feet on the ground floor and another 500 square feet in the basement. The asking rent was $150 per square foot, which is about half the asking rents just a few blocks farther north, where Yoya had a storefront for more than a decade.
That corner space had nearly 20 feet of window frontage on both Horatio and Hudson streets, and was near the border of the meatpacking district, which boasts attractions like the High Line and a future outpost of the Whitney Museum of American Art.
“There are at least 10 vacancies (along Hudson Street),” said Cast Iron Real Estate’s David Barreto, who represented Yoya, along with colleague James Jaquez. “Old tenants who helped make the neighborhood more desirable have been forced out.”
But this all-too-common New York City tale had a happy ending for Yoya, which considered decamping to Brooklyn before finding its new digs.
The landlord of Yoya’s old space, Birchwood Management, tells a different story, saying that Yoya’s lease wasn’t expiring until 2015 and that the firm never indicated it would raise the rent or decline to renew the lease. Instead, Yoya took the new space without notice.
Mr. Barreto noted that high-end retailers like Marc Jacobs are a great fit for major shopping thoroughfares like Bleecker Street, but the surrounding neighborhood also needs small mom-and-pop shops like Yoya, which had a loyal local following.
The landlord of 605 Hudson St., brothers Patrick and Alain Laurent, represented themselves in-house in the transaction.