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SEATTLE-Barneys New York will relocate its Downtown store next year after more than 15 years at City Centre. The luxury fashion retailer has signed a long-term lease for a 16,448-sf, two-story location facing both Sixth Avenue and Pine Street at Pacific Place, an upscale vertical mall in the heart of the Downtown shopping district. The space it will occupy, directly across from Nordstrom’s flagship, is currently occupied by Pottery Barn, which will be leaving in January.

The two-story space it’s leaving is about 10,000 sf, which provides about 7,000 sf of selling area. The new location will have about 12,000 sf of selling area. “It’s no secret we’re in expansion mode,” a source with Barneys tells GlobeSt.com. “[The larger space] will allow us to provide a more in-depth presentation of men’s and women’s designer clothes including more room for Co-op,” the Barneys line aimed at younger buyers.At its existing location–two blocks away near Fifth Avenue and Union Street–neighbors include Ann Taylor and Furla. At Pacific Place, Barneys will be flanked by Cartier and Tiffany’s, “which makes more sense than Cartier-Pottery Barn-Tiffany’s,” says Real Retail broker Jennifer Severson, who has the leasing assignment for Pacific Place. “And with Coach and BCBG also there, bringing in a fashion apparel anchor tenant really rounds out the merchandise mix.”

Meantime, there is no lack of interest in Barney’s current space, which it will vacate next May. “There’s definitely people interested,” says Susan Zimmerman, the GVA Kidder Mathews broker with the retail leasing assignment at City Centre. Betsy Sutherland, the regional manager for City Centre owner Bentall Capital US, says conversations are ongoing with “several retailers” and that she hopes to have the new tenant open up and running by Christmas 2007.

The blended lease rate for the Barneys space at City Centre is in the middle $30s per sf, triple net, according to local sources. The blended rate for its new corner location at Pacific Place is said to be in the $40s per sf.

The build-out of the new Barneys will be expensive. One of the major items will be removing the two escalators that currently move people to the second floor of Pottery Barn and replace it with a grand staircase. Barneys declined to comment on the cost of its planned build-out and Severson would only describe it as “significant.” Brooks Brothers, which is recently relocated to within a block of the existing Barneys, spent $3 million to build out its 15,000-sf space, which works out to $200 per sf.

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