NYC’s retail vacancies in affluent areas remind me of a similar situation in the heart of Silicon Valley. In towns like Palo Alto, Menlo Park, and Atherton many multimillion dollar single family houses in the most desirable neighborhoods have sat vacant for years. Many of these were bought in just the last 5 years by foreign investors (Chinese) purportedly as a means for parking large amounts of money outside of China. Are the two situations in any way related? Or is the NY retail situation simply a function of property values are based on rents as Martin Ryan points out?