|Founders||Arthur G. Cohen and Arthur N. Levien|
New York City
Arlen Realty & Development Corporation, also known as Arlen, was an American REIT founded in 1959 by Arthur G. Cohen, Arthur N. Levien, and Marshall Rose. It is notable as one of the largest publicly traded REIT's in the 1970s. Arlen began by developing suburban shopping centers throughout the country, and in 1971 purchased national discount retail chain E.J. Korvette. By 1975 Arlen owned and managed over 42 million square feet of shopping centers, and controlled over $1.7 billion of US real estate assets.
Arlen Developed Olympic Tower with Aristotle Onassis in 1975. The building is a 52-story building in Midtown Manhattan, in New York City on Fifth Avenue, between East 51st Street and East 52nd Street. The exact address is 641 Fifth Avenue. It was constructed on a site that was occupied by a Best & Company Store that was built in 1947. It contains 225 condominium apartments and more than 250,000 square feet (23,000 m2) of office space and retail space. Situated next to St. Patrick's Cathedral, it offers views of the cathedral's buttresses and Fifth Avenue. Upon construction, it became a prime real estate location for the glitterati of that time.
The planned use of the building was a groundbreaking concept at that time because it was the first mixed use zoned for Fifth Avenue, which had 21 floors of offices, 30 of condominiums and high-end retail on the first floor. It was designed by the architectural firm of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, who also designed the Willis Tower and John Hancock Center in Chicago, as well as many other high-rise buildings in the U.S. and worldwide.
Olympic Tower was the first residential condominium building in New York to have been built on a ground lease, and set a precedent for many future high end developments such as neighboring Trump Tower. In 2012, an Oxford Properties partnership purchased a minority interest in the buildings retail that valued it at over $1 billion.
Donald Soffer had the property where Aventura is located and wanted to create a project on it called Biscayne Village. Having difficulty getting financing on his own he went to the John Hancock insurance company who agreed to finance the project if Arlen was the lead developer. As a result of the Village of Biscayne Park incorporated in Dade County objected to the name as it would be confusing the name was changed to Aventura creating the early development of the city Aventura, Florida. Arlens other developments in the county included residential developments (Arlen House, Arlen Beach House, Arlen House East, and Arlen House West), as well as office developments, and the Aventura Country Club.
Notable New York City developments
Arlen's other high profile New York City developments include the Arlen Building or 888 7th Avenue which was built in 1971 and served as the company's corporate headquarters. In addition to other properties such as 1500 Broadway in Times Square, 1166 Avenue of the Americas, the Westyard Building at 450 West 33rd Street, 100 Wall Street and 800 Third Avenue.
Shopping centers and suburban strip retail
Arlen's shopping center division was headquartered in Chattanooga, Tennessee and owned and managed many large regional shopping centers and hundreds of strip retail properties across the United States and Puerto Rico. In 1970, Arlen's shopping center division merged with Charles Lebovitz's Independent Enterprises in order to form Arlen subsidiary Arlen Shopping Center Group. Charles Lebovitz, the founder and current chairman of CBL & Associates served as president of Arlen Shopping Center Group throughout the 1970s. Some of Arlen's larger shopping center developments include the Jefferson Valley Mall, Monmouth Mall, Swansea Mall, North Dartmouth Mall, Springfield Mall, and Orlando Fashion Square. Lebovitz went on to spin off Arlen Shopping Center Group into CBL & Associates in 1978.
Arlen owned Korvette's From 1971 to 1979, and used Korvette's 50 stores as a source of cash flow. Under Arlen's ownership, Korvette's stores deteriorated and lost market share relative to other retailers.
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- "Oxford Properties Acquires Partial Ownership of Olympic Tower with Crown Acquisitions from Onassis Foundation".
- "Vitale, Joe. "Family & Fortune: Aventura was dreamed up by Donald Soffer. He built it and they came. By the thousands. Now his children are fighting to protect it."". Archived from the original on 2013-01-18.
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- "Arlen Realty Develops Monmouth Mall" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-09-15.
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