Michael C. Phillipou

Partner
Phillipou Michael

Michael Phillipou is a real estate attorney who focuses on supporting owners, tenants, and developers of real estate as they address design, construction, development, leasing, land use, acquisition, and disposition issues affecting them. Michael advises clients on capital construction and expansion, P3, infrastructure, renovation, leasing, purchase and sale, joint venture, condominium and cooperative, and financing projects. Though not the entirety of his practice, he has developed a specialization working with cultural, educational, religious, and governmental and quasi-governmental organizations and the unique considerations that affect their transactions, including complex co-development transactions with for-profit developers. 

Experience

Representative Matters

Design and Construction

  • Represents Amtrak in connection with the construction of its new concrete casing and preserving its right-of-way for a future tunnel under the Hudson Yards development project on the west side of Manhattan and the Moynihan Station development project. The projects involve drafting and negotiating complex agreements with several intertwined parties, obtaining necessary federal and local approvals, and ensuring compliance with procurement requirements
  • Represents the owner of a 600-plus facility hotel chain in negotiating a master architectural agreement with an internationally recognized design firm to implement a portfolio-wide refresh and revitalization, and create a new prototype facility for future construction
  • Represents the Public Theater in the revitalization of the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, the home of Free Shakespeare in the Park, a $110 million upgrade scheduled to begin in 2020
  • Represents a nationwide healthcare facility owner and operator in the design and construction of more than 15 new and renovated skilled nursing and assisted living facilities throughout the country
  • Serves as general outside construction counsel to many institutions with expansive real property portfolios, regarding major renovation and capital construction projects, including the Archdiocese of New York and New York Law School
  • Represented Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (LMDC) regarding various projects at the World Trade Center site, including deconstruction of the contaminated 130 Liberty Street building, and various design and construction matters related to the memorial and museum. The representation also included advising LMDC in its defense against multi-million-dollar litigation brought by its prime contractor. The provisions of the deconstruction contract were credited by the opinion of the Appellate Division in determining the issue
  • Represented several of the most recognizable tristate-area private schools and universities in major master plan and capital expansion and renovation projects, including related dispute resolution proceedings

Purchase and Sale

  • Represented the seller of an 80-plus-acre multi-building, multi-family property in Manhattan for a sale price in excess of $5 billion, widely reported as the largest single-asset sale transaction in history
  • Represented the seller of a building comprising an entire city block in Manhattan in a sale to a joint venture for a sale price in excess of $850 million
  • Represented a national insurance company in a joint venture for the acquisition, construction, and development of three new city blocks in downtown Washington, DC – created by platforming over portions of I-395 – including drafting and negotiating documents with private parties, and municipal and federal government entities related to the development
  • Represented New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) in the potential sale of the Willets Point Development site to a joint venture, including negotiating agreements for remediation, ground leasing, and development
  • Represented the owner of an entire city block in the Hudson Yards area in the sale of a non-majority interest to a private equity investor

Leasing

  • Represented the tenant of a 100,000+ square foot premises in a Class A office building in a transaction that involved converting the lease to a leasehold condominium to preserve the benefit of the client’s real property tax exemption.
  • Represented the owner of a 1.2 million square foot building in preparing a new form of office lease and negotiating leases with marquee tenants based on the newly adopted form
  • Represented the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation in the ground leasing of the six-plus-acre Admiral's Row and Sands Street sites to a private developer, including negotiating the terms of the supermarket lease for New York City's first Wegmans location
  • Represented New York Road Runners, Inc. (operators of the New York City Marathon) in leases for its new primary retail and race administration facility at New York's landmarked Hearst Building and its headquarters 
  • Represented the Municipal Art Society of New York (MAS) in the leasing of several floors of a new headquarters located in the landmark Steinway Hall Building
  • Represented a national fashion chain in negotiating workouts for more than 15 retail and office leases in a wind-down of company operations
 

Insights

Credentials
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Education

  • J.D. Boston College Law School 2004
  • Vice President, Domestic Violence Advocacy Project

  • B.A. cum laude University of Richmond 2001
  • Dean's List

    Phi Beta Kappa

    Golden Key National Honor Society

    Philosophy National Honor Society

Bar Admissions

  • New York
  • New Jersey

Recognition
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  • Recognized as a "Rising Star in Real Estate" in Crain's New York Business, 2019
  • Recognized as a "Rising Star" in Real Estate Weekly, 2019
  • Ranked in Legal 500, Real Estate, 2018

Community
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Pro Bono

  • Represented a pro bono asylum applicant and achieved a grant of asylum at the interview phase and related applications and work authorizations

Volunteerism

  • Annual speaker, New York Law School’s Rooftop’s Conference