Capital New York Hires Three Columnists As Relaunch Nears

Now that Capital is close to filling up its reporter ranks on the politics and media desks, editors are lining up several weekly city columnists for the site’s early November relaunch. Capital’s first three columnists will be Jim Windolf, a Vanity Fair contributing editor who has written for several publications and started the New York Observer’s “New York World” column; Joanna Molloy, a veteran Daily News gossip writer and co-author of a new book on the subject; and Glynnis MacNicol, a writer and co-founder of and former media editor at Business Insider and Mediaite. The model will be more Jimmy Breslin than Joe Scarborough. While Politico columnists, like Scarborough or National Review editor Rich Lowry, comment on political and policy debates, Capital’s writers will produce reported columns that also express a point of view. They’ll draw from the city columnist tradition that extends from tabloid muckraking, a la Breslin, to the New York Times’ Clyde Haberman. Capital co-editor Tom McGeveran told HuffPost the new columns will focus on “New York issues, New York personalities and New York places.” “This is a tradition in which the best columns always entertain,” McGeveran said. “Sometimes they even change the minds of the city’s big decision makers; better yet is when a columnist changes their plans.” The new columnists are not joining full-time, but will write weekly for the site. However, Capital has been filling up the newsroom with full-time reporters and editors since Politico purchased the three-year-old site in September. On the politics front, Capital’s hired Daily News veteran Joanne Wasserman , the Albany Times Union’s Jimmy Vielkind , the New York Post’s Sally Goldenberg . Capital media reporter Joe Pompeo will now be joined on the desk by several additional reporters, including TV Newser’s Alex Weprin, Women’s Wear Daily’s Matthew Lynch, former Newsday and Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Nicole Levy, and World Policy Journal’s Johana Bhuiyan. In addition, Peter Sterne will cover media part-time for the site while finishing at Columbia University. Follow Michael Calderone on Twitter: FOLLOW MEDIA

New York home sales hit six-year high of $11.3 billion

RELATED: SANDY-WRECKED HOME FIRST SALE IN NYC REBUILDING PROGRAM Almost every neighborhood in each borough saw activity increase from a year ago, Michael Slattery, the boards senior vice president for research, told the Daily News. Rising interest rates played a part in the home sales boom as buyers jumped off the fence to snatch up properties over the summer before borrowing grew too costly. RELATED: BROOKLYNS HOTNESS PUSHES BOTH RENTS AND SALE PRICES TO NEW HEIGHTS But the surge is also a testament to an improving city economy and rising rents, which are pushing tenants to become buyers. With so little new rental housing being built and the demand for this housing unabated, rents are only going to rise, Slattery said. These factors have made renters want to be owners. The number of home sales citywide in the quarter surged 28% compared with last year, to 14,073. The average sales price rose 3% to $806,000. Craig Warga/Bloomberg The home sales boom was fueled by buyers hoping to take advantage of lower interest rates, and tenants that wanted to become owners amid the city’s rising rents. The rush to buy spread beyond Manhattan and prime areas of Brooklyn, where activity is generally concentrated. RELATED: BLOOMBERG HAILED BY REAL ESTATE BIZ Sales in both Brooklyn and Queens for one- to three-family homes hit postrecession highs. An especially hot market condos in Flushing, Queens. The number of condo sales there more than doubled to 192 in the third quarter compared with last year. The average price of a condo surged 14% to $508,000. The upper East Side also sizzled as co-op sales jumped 44%. The average sale price of an upper East Side co-op increased 8% to $1.5 million.