trade

World Trade Center landlord Silverstein Properties turns to ghost kitchen Zuul in bid to return workers

“Food is a major concern,” Vardi said. “People are uncomfortable going between the office and outside, and ordering food still requires going down to pick it up.”

The best way to resolve those concerns is by delivering food directly to tenants’ offices, he said. But that raises issues of security and health screenings of couriers entering the building, especially within the World Trade Center.
 
That has opened an opportunity for Zuul, which operates a commercial kitchen in SoHo where established city brands such as Naya Express, Sarge’s Deli and Stone Bridge Pizza prepare smaller versions of their menus for takeout only. The food is produced from a single commercial kitchen, disconnected from any dining room, typically referred to as a ghost kitchen or cloud kitchen.

Workers can order lunch from those restaurants using a custom app for tenants. Orders must be in by 10:30 a.m. to arrive by lunch hour.

Zuul said it will rely on a small group of couriers who have been preapproved by Silverstein to ride the buildings’ freight elevators. Meals are delivered all at once to each separate office, where they can be distributed by the tenant company. The program will be offered to workers at World Trade Center properties as well as Silverstein’s other office holdings, such as 120 Broadway, Vardi said.

Pre-pandemic, Vardi said, the areas outside of office buildings included a “tsunami” of delivery couriers waiting for someone to come grab their order.

There are no such tidal waves now, at any building, as offices throughout the city are still sitting mostly unoccupied.

Safe food delivery has become part of the pitch from landlords to change that. The program is included in Silverstein promotional materials, which also outline the company’s air-filtration systems and social-distancing plan.   

RXR Realty, a major city office landlord whose

Stocks rise as White House, Democrats trade stimulus offers

Stocks rose Wednesday as House Democrats and the Trump administration traded offers for another round of coronavirus stimulus.



Nancy Pelosi wearing sunglasses posing for the camera: Stocks rise as White House, Democrats trade stimulus offers


© Bonnie Cash – Greg Nash
Stocks rise as White House, Democrats trade stimulus offers

Both sides are seeking an elusive deal on coronavirus relief before the election.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened with a gain of 350 points, rising 1.3 percent. The S&P 500 rose 0.8 percent and the Nasdaq composite rose 1 percent shortly after the market opened.

The strong start to Wednesday trading came after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that Republicans will propose a $1.5 trillion stimulus bill after he and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) restarted negotiations last week. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) also told House Democrats that he plans to bring a $2.2 trillion offer to the floor Wednesday.

While both parties remain far apart on the preferred size of a stimulus bill, the monetary difference between Democratic and Republican offers has narrowed considerably since the spring.

Democrats and Republicans are attempting to break a months-long stalemate over a follow-up to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the $2.2 trillion stimulus and pandemic response bill signed by President Trump in March. Key elements of that bill, such as a boost to unemployment benefits and emergency loans for small businesses, expired this summer without replacement.

The House in May passed a roughly $3 trillion bill that Republicans dismissed immediately, and Republicans have been reluctant to approve more than $1 trillion in aid.

The pace of the recovery from the coronavirus recession slowed notably over the summer and into fall, and the U.S. is still reeling from immense economic pain. More than 10 million people who lost their jobs due to the pandemic have not yet found work again, and thousands of