In Stamford, Gambling on an Office Complex Makeover

(The New York Times) The New York-based firm George Comfort & Sons, perhaps best known as the landlord of the Worldwide Plaza complex in Midtown, is making a big bet on Stamford, Conn.

A rendering of 232 Harbor Drive in the Harbor Plaza development of Stamford, Conn. The development, now 45 percent occupied, is to be renovated and renamed Shippan Landing.

Credit: MPFP LLC

George Comfort, which specializes in repositioning struggling properties, took ownership of Harbor Plaza, a half-empty waterfront development, in January 2012. Now the developer is starting a $40 million renovation in a bid to revive the bedraggled office complex. The move has raised some eyebrows as it comes at an unsettling time for the Stamford office market, with vacancy rates topping 25 percent and a looming possibility that one of the city’s anchor tenants, UBS, may soon leave.