crown CU Home > Libraries Home
[x] Close window

Columbia University Libraries Digital Collections: The Real Estate Record

Use your browser's Print function to print these pages.

Real estate record and builders' guide: v. 74, no. 1901: August 20, 1904

Real Estate Record page image for page ldpd_7031148_034_00000459

Text version:

Please note: this text may be incomplete. For more information about this OCR, view About OCR text.
August 20, 1904 RECORD AND GUIDE 389 •mi; erecting some decent taxpayers upon it. It Is yet to be seen whether the excellent demand for business property on the aveaue will or will not be continued throughout the coming year. - ' De/oICD P RPA.L ESTWI. BuiLDlfiG ApCifITECTURE ,t{ouSEHOU) DEOOifnoiJ. .Bi/5Bfc3SAliD Themes OF GEifeRtl liJiERfST. PRICE PER YEAR IN ADVANCE SIX DOLLARS Published eVerp Satardas Communications should be adclressed to C. W. aWEET, 14-16 Vesey Street, New YorK J. T. LINDSEY, Businesa Managor Telephone, Cortlandt 3157 "Entered at the Post OjSlee at New York. N. T.,as second-class mailer." Vol. LXXIV. AUGUST 20, 1904, No. 1901 The Index io Volume LXXIII of ihe Becord and Guide, covering the period betieccn January 1, and June 30, 1904, is ready for delivery. Price^l. This Index in its enlarged form is recogi- nised as indispensable to every one engaged or interested in real estate and bnilding operallons. It covers all transactions—deeds, mortgages, lease.'', ant-lion sales, buildhig plans filed, etc. Orders for ihe Inde.r .W/(i»/(/ Ix- i^vnt at once to the office of publication, 14 and IG Vesey St. IN spite of a good deal of adverse news the marltet for stocks has during the past weelt ruled strong. The depressing news related chiefly Lo additional injury to the wheat crop, aud to the demoralization of prices in certain important branches of the finished steel trade. Apparently Wall Street did not believe that either of special disturbance, however serious, were of a Kind to warrant any cessation of the bull movement. This movement is based chiefly upon the prospect of very large corn and cotton crops, marketed at good prices, and nothing has hap¬ pened to make this prospect any less probable. The country can afford a short wheat crop, provided it is sold at good prices, while the cut in steel prices is likely to be beneficial to general trade, There can be no doubt that such cuts would have been made long ago had not the preponderant influence of the U. S. Steel Corporation been consistently exerted in favor of stable prices. But the time has come when not even the influence of this corporation can resist the effect of the existing conditions. The steel finishing mills are capable of producing a much larger product at the present time than the country is capable of con¬ suming, and under such circumstances the cutting of prices is inevitable. It remains to be seen whether the Corporation can really produce more cheaply than its competitors, and so staJid the pressure of severe competition. In the meantime, of course, consumptoin will he encouraged hy the low prices, and ,the volume of general business should be increased. The incident, however, is not reassuring, and should teach outsiders to look cautiously on the bull campaign—particularly in view of the fact that the campaign is so largely professional. APART from a few sales of private dwellings, the only real estate transaction of any interest announced during the past week is the sale of a half interest of the old Paran Stev¬ ens property at Fifth Avenue and Forty-fourth Street by the Century Realty Company fo the United States Realty Company. The sale simply means, of course, that the former coinpany de¬ sires to get rid of some of the expense of carrying such a costly parcel of real estate; and it means also, in all probability, that the parcel will have to be carried for some time before any final disposition can be made of it. It was intended orig¬ inally that a hotel should be erected on the site, and, indeed, a hotel after the manner of the St. Regis would, under ordinary circumstances, be the most profitable manner in which the site could be employed. But just at present he would be a bold man who would put several million dollars in another Manhattan ho¬ tel, no matter how excellent the location might be. Three big new hotels will be opened this fall, and several more will fol¬ low soon thereafter. New York, in spite of the passing hy of several older hotels, will be sufficiently well stocked with this sort of accommodation for many years to come, particularly since the new apartment hotels are also taking over part of the transient trade. Consequently, with a hotel out of the question and with no remaining club in New York sufficiently opulent to afford the property, the only other possible disposition of it would be its sale to a wealthy retail firm; and this is probably the best use to which it could be put. But considering that Tif- fanys & Co. do not grow in every bush, the present owners of the property would do well to ease the burden of carrying it, by DURING the week the labor troubles in the building trades have become more, rather than less, acute, and there are no trustworthy indications of a settlement in the near future. The fact that the mechanics composing the unions affiliated with the Building Trades Alliance have made a mistake is plainly sbown by the disapproval with which the actions which led to the lock-out has been received by the officers of the general associations. The Building Trades, Alliance is fighting against the best interests of union labor, rather than against the em¬ ployers, and it is in the long run bound to go under. The am- nouncement by the Employers' Association that, beginning with next Monday, they would hire individuals, apart from whether they were or were not members of the union, is simply a.n acknowledgment that the crisis is serious, and that the battle must be fought with every weapon the association can use. It proposes to adopt the policy which was found effective last fall of employmg disaffected members of the union individually, and thereafter organizing them into new unions, which will be more loyal to the arbitration agreement. The association has no intention of establishing the "open shop" inr the bnilding trades of the city, and the policy of employing mechanics in¬ dividually for the time being does not look in that direction. What the employers want is a well-organized building trade, consisting of associations of masters and mechanics which recognize each other's interests and rights; and the open shop, even if it could be established, would not contribute to such a result. Whether completely organized or not, the mechanics would strike whenever it suited their apparent momentary in¬ terests to do so; and what the trade needs above Is freedom from arbitrary and sympathetic strikes. Such strikes, when they can be called by irresponsible delegates inevitably offers the opportunity for grafting, with which the trade used to be honey-combed; and whetlier or not Mr. Weinseimer is guilty of the charge just made against him, the regime which he is trying to restore in the building trades is the regime of dishonesty and extortion. As long as strikes, which may cost am employer thousands of dollars, can be called arbitrarily, the temptation to unfair dealing is acute and frequently proves to be irresistible —particularly under the condition of high pressure character¬ istic of building in New York; and the Employers' Association cannot rest until such strikes have been made impossible. THE proposed ordinance in respect to fireproofing, introduced hy Alderman McCall, is a very less objectionable revision of this section of the Building Code than the one recently vetoed by the Mayor. It simply provides that all buildings more than 100 feet in height shall be fireproofed in the same manner as buildings 150 feet in height are now fireproofed. The regula¬ tion as so amended avoids most ot the objeictions which, prompted the Mayor to veto the other ordinance, and it will not be opposed by the Building department. It looks, consequently, as if it would finally be incorporated in the Building Code; and in spite of the fact that it appears to be framed in the interest of certain special fireproofing materials, it is a good thing that it should be so incorporated. Any revision of the code that looks conservatively towards a higher standard of fireproof construc¬ tion has a presumption in its favor; and the proposed new regu¬ lation is much more conservative than the one recently vetoed. The Record and Guide would have preferred to see the figure 120 substituted for the figure 100 in the ordinance; but it cannot be said that the standard required is excessive for buildings as high as 100 feet. What the ordinance means is that office, Ioft and apartment buildings containing ten, eleven and twelve stories, in which fireproofed finish and metal sashes are not re¬ quired at the present time, will have to be fireproofed in the same manner as buildings sixteen and eighteen high. As a great many ten to twelve story buildings are now erected by speculative builders and as buildings of at least these heights must be erected on land of a certain value, the new regulation will introduce very considerable changes into present methods of construction; and its effect will be to encourage builders to add one or two floors to buildings which at present do not go higher than twelve stories. Only by so doing can they get back the extra money spent on additional flreprooflng. What the ultimate effect of the ordinance will be is uncertain, but probably the special interests which have favored the change will be disappointed in the Issue. The final result is likely to be the substitution of some other less inflammable material for wood, whether fireproofed pr not,