Great Point and National Resources Secure $40M Construction Loan for Yonkers Movie Studio Project
Real Estate In-Depth | April 2020
YONKERS—Great Point Capital Management and National Resources announced on April 7 they had closed a $40-million loan with CIT to complete the financing of Great Point’s first construction project, a major film and television studio complex at the i.Park Hudson complex in Yonkers.
The loan is the last step before construction begins on the production center, which GPC and partner National Resources are building for global content leader Lionsgate. At least one of the complex’s three 20,000-square-foot stages is expected to be operational late this year.
Adviser on the deal was London-based Great Point Media Group, a diversified media and entertainment company owned by Jim Reeve and Robert Halmi. It has provided investment and arranged financing for more than 50 production companies with clients including Lionsgate, Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, Google, Sky, BBC, ITV, Universal, AMC, Hallmark, Sony and Paramount.
“CIT is a leader in community-driven projects and our financial support for this development will help bring jobs and revenue into Yonkers at a critical time,” said CIT Chairwoman and CEO Ellen Alemany said.
“We are pleased to leverage our expertise and market knowledge to help finance this new studio project in the transformational i.Park Hudson development,” said Chris Niederpruem, managing director and group head for CIT’s Real Estate Finance group. “CIT is active in financing commercial properties in the Greater New York region, and this project represents a solid development opportunity in an attractive location.”
Robert Halmi, CEO of GPC, said, “With great partners like CIT, Lionsgate and National Resources, we are able to keep business moving forward—an important accomplishment given the constraints of working in the midst of a pandemic.”
Earlier this year, Lionsgate became a stakeholder in the studio complex and will use the entire facility as a modern state-of-the-art entertainment complex once completed. As its sole tenant, Lionsgate has naming rights to the studio.
The more than $100-million, full-service film and television production facility will include three 20,000-square-foot and two 10,000-square-foot stages. Along with the five stages, there will be ample office, support space and parking.
National Resources of Greenwich, CT, a key investment partner, will be responsible for all phases of design and construction of the studio complex. National Resources has developed many innovative i.Parks and landmark Hudson River waterfront residences. Under the i.Park brand, National Resources has transformed some of America’s largest former industrial sites into vibrant workplaces.
The studio complex will be located in the heart of i.Park Hudson, a 24-acre technology and office campus, home to Kawasaki Rail Car, Mindspark (an IAC company), Hudson Global, various city and state agencies, as well as UNO, a 100-micro-unit residential building.
The ambitious development project has also secured incentives from the Yonkers Industrial Development Agency. At its Feb. 19th session, the Board of Directors of the Yonkers Industrial Development agency granted preliminary approval of proposed financial incentives for the movie studio complex.
The incentives are in connection with the $60-million first phase of the studio complex for Lionsgate. The approximately 109,000-square-foot development, which would be built on the parking lot of the iPark Hudson complex, will include 70,000 square feet of studio space and 38,600 square feet of ancillary spaces. The project is anticipated to create between 285 to 420 full-time permanent jobs as well as 400 construction jobs.
The overall Lionsgate studio project was announced in September 2019 by Lionsgate and partner Great Point Capital Management.