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NEW YORK CITY-Vornado Realty Trust, based in Paramus, NJ, has acquired a residential/retail complex at East 66th Street and Madison Avenue for $158 million. This is the REIT’s second Madison Avenue purchase so far this year. The company just closed on its $113-million acquisition of the 17,000-sf retail condominium portion of the former Westbury Hotel which occupies the blockfront at Madison Avenue between 69th and 70th streets.

In the most recent acquisition, the property contains 37 rental apartments with an aggregate of 85,000 sf plus 9,100 sf of retail space, which is fully occupied by Basso, Gaultier and Krizia. The deal is expected to close sometime in the second quarter.

In April, Vornado Realty LP, the operating partnership of Vornado Realty Trust sold $500-million aggregate principal amount of 3.875% exchangeable senior debentures due in 2025. Net proceeds are expected to be approximately $490 million and used “for working capital and other corporate purposes.” Also in April, the REIT sold a 452-unit multifamily rental building at 400 N. LaSalle St. in Chicago for $126 million. The purchase of the Westbury Hotel site was funded with an $80-million mortgage loan on the property bearing interest at 5.292% and maturing in 2018. The remaining portion was funded as part of a Section 1031 tax-free “like-kind” exchange with a portion of the proceeds from the sale of 400 North LaSalle. And earlier in the year, Vornado and two partners were the winning bidders for the Toys ‘R’ Us and Babies ‘R’ Us chains for $6.6 billion.

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