Vornado Moving YAI’s iHope School to 825 Seventh Avenue

YAI’s iHope school — which serves students with brain injuries and disorders — has outgrown its East Harlem location (Vornando Realty Trust, iStock)

A school is set to make the move from its East Harlem location on West 116th Street to 825 Seventh Avenue.

The iHope School, part of non-profit human services provider YAI, is moving to nearly 77,000 square feet of space in the Vornado Realty Trust building, JLL announced on Monday. YAI signed an agreement to convey 30-year leasehold condominium interest on the second, third, and fourth floors of the building, as well as part of the lower level.

The school — which has been serving students with brain injuries or brain-related disorders since the 2013-14 school year — is moving downtown to expand its classroom technologies and therapeutic services.

The lease was arranged with property owners Vornado and Edward J. Minskoff Equities. Terms of the lease were not immediately clear, but JLL vice-chairman Matthew Astrachan told The New York Post the asking rent was in the low $60s per square foot.

YAI CEO George Kontos said in a statement the deal marked “the first time” the school would be able to provide a central space for “specialized therapies, state-of-the-art technology, and a mock apartment for students transitioning to independence.”

Vornado is no stranger to leasing to schools. The company has been leasing the bottom floors of Independence Plaza in Tribeca for P.S. 150 for some time.

In 2018, school parents found out the city’s lease for the space had expired, which was going to force the school to find a new home by the 2019-20 academic year. After pleas from parent leaders and city officials, however, Vornado and Stellar Management agreed to allow the school to stay until a replacement site on Trinity Place was ready, postponing plans for more amenities and residential units.

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