Jon C. Popin

Special Counsel

  • Jon C. Popin
  • Phone: +1 212 471 1844
    Fax: +1 212 202 7836

    Jon C. Popin - LinkedIn Import to Address Book

  • Duane Morris LLP
    1540 Broadway
    New York, NY 10036-4086

Jon C. Popin concentrates his practice in land-use law and real estate finance. He has experience with land-use and zoning issues that arise in land purchase and development matters. He represents developers and property owners in all types of zoning matters, including, re-zonings, variances, special permits, certifications and authorizations. Mr. Popin is experienced in handling matters before the New York City Department of City Planning, New York City Board of Standards and Appeals, New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, New York City Economic Development Corporation and New York City Landmarks Commission. He is also experienced in representing purchasers and sellers in the sale of unused development rights.

Mr. Popin is experienced in filings in connection with partial real property tax exemptions and abatements, including the 421-a, 421-b, 421-g, 420-c, J-51 and ICAP programs.

In addition, Mr. Popin represents lenders in sophisticated transactions throughout the United States including commercial mortgage loans included in securitizations, mezzanine loans, and construction and leasehold financings. He also represents lenders that specialize in the development and refinance of affordable-housing.

Mr. Popin also is a member of the firm's New Markets Tax Credit Practice Group, which represents investors, community development entities, leveraged lenders and for-profit and non-profit sponsors in the development of projects through the Federal New Markets Tax Credit program. Representative transactions of the firm's New Markets Tax Credit Practice Group have included community centers, university-related mixed-use projects, hotels, shopping centers, and medical centers that have been structured with conventional leverage loans, sponsor leveraging and the leveraging of a variety of grant sources, including tax-increment financing.

Representative Matters

    Land-Use Matters

  • Representation of a developer in a zoning lot merger and purchase of 32,250 square feet of development rights from multiple adjoining properties in connection with the construction of a highrise hotel in midtown Manhattan.
  • Representation of the owner of a 62,000 square foot parcel in a land swap with the City of New York. Issues involved potential soil contamination, federal wetland permitting and newly proposed Special Purpose District on property to be swapped to owner.
  • Representation of the developer of a mixed-use development in the Little Italy section of Manhattan, New York. Obtained zoning special permit, authorizations and certification necessary for project development in Special Little Italy District. Filed 421-a partial tax exemption.
  • Representation of a hotel owner in the re-zoning of a hotel near JFK Airport, New York.
  • Represented a large not-for-profit in obtaining a special permit to allow a nonpublic high school to operate in a manufacturing district.
  • Obtained special approvals from the city of New York through its Department of Buildings which allowed for the execution of a lease of the ground floor and mezzanine of a high-rise Manhattan commercial building to a highly popular London-based Japanese restaurant chain looking to enter the United States market.
  • Other Matters

  • Participated in the $780 million refinancing of the Sears Tower in Chicago.
  • Participated in the $140 million refinancing of a hotel in Times Square, New York, the mortgage of which encumbered ground lease, developments rights lease and fee ownership interests covering the property, together with $130 million in layered mezzanine financing.
  • Participated in the $100 million acquisition and construction-mortgage financing of a proposed 50-story mixed-use new building in midtown Manhattan, which included the purchase of 63,422 square feet of development rights and an inclusionary housing zoning bonus of 31,272 square feet, together with $64.575 million in layered mezzanine financing.

Areas of Practice

  • Real Estate


  • New York


  • Brooklyn Law School, J.D.
  • California State University, Los Angeles, B.S.

Professional Activities

  • Association of the Bar of the City of New York
  • New York State Bar Association

Selected Speaking Engagements

  • "Factors that Led to the Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities Meltdown," Group Discussion on American Business Structure, Jilin University EMBA Overseas Training Program, May 18, 2011
  • Opening Remarks, Affordable Housing and Community Development Reception, October 2010
  • Speaker, "Government Entitlements, Constraints and Incentives," International Association of Attorneys and Executives in Corporate Real Estate (AECRE), Fall Forum, Chicago, November 21, 2008

Selected Publications