NEW YORK CITY-A lot of developers are stealing the mindset of the film, “Field of Dreams,” as yet another deal to convert Lower Manhattan office into residential use is announced. The 800,000-sf 20 Exchange Pl. was traded for $152 million to a joint venture comprised of Nathan Berman, Yaron Bruckner and Eastbridge NV. The bottom of tower will continue to be used for office space, while floors 16 through 57 will be converted to residential.

The law firm of Herrick, Feinstein LLP put the deal together with senior debt financing provided by Column Financial Inc., which is a division of CS First Boston. Senior mezzanine financing was provided by an affiliate of SL Green and junior mezzanine financing was provided by Prudential Real Estate Investors. “The Herrick team closed one of the most complicated financing deals that I’ve seen in my 36 years in the business,” notes Andy Singer, of Singer & Bassuk, which brokered the financing. Tenants at 57-story 20 Exchange Pl., which is located in the heart of the financial district, include the New York Transit Authority.

Berman and Bruckner closed another downtown deal this week–an enhancement to the Liberty Bond financing of 63 Wall St. Last December, the project received tax-exempt Liberty Bond financing from the New York City Housing Development Corp. for the residential conversion initiative.The JV is converting the former headquarters of Brown Brothers Harriman, to a 475-unit residential building. To further enhance the Liberty Bond financing, Herrick conceived of an facility where the World-Wide Group, which is also one of the firm’s developer clients, teamed up with Bank of America’s Tri-Sale Mezzanine Fund to provide a letter of credit secured by a pledge of membership interests.

“There’s little more satisfying than putting clients together to create a new line of business. This is as good as it gets,” points out Carl F. Schwartz, chairman of the real estate department at Herrick, Feinstein. For it’s part, the World-Wide Group notes that creating supplemental products contributes to the rebirth of the financial district, accoring to the company’s Julia Hodgson.

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