Relocation

Morrison & Foerster Moving in at 250 West 55th Street

250 West 55th Street. (Credit: Boston Properties)

Morrison & Foerster will be the first tenant to move in at 250 West 55th Street, according to an email to clients viewed by Commercial Observer. The law firm will officially relocate from 1290 Avenue of the Americas on Monday.

The move comes nearly three years after Morrison & Foerster first signed a lease at Boston Properties’ new tower. The firm’s initial 15-year commitment for 180,000 square feet of space on the 17th through 23rd floors allowed the developer to proceed with construction of the tower, which had been delayed during the recession. Approximately a year later, Morrison & Foerster signed a lease for an additional floor at the building. Read More

Lease Beat

Modern Bank Relocating to 250 West 55th Street

250 West 55th Street. (Credit: Boston Properties)

Modern Bank has inked a 13,200-square-foot lease on the 15th floor of Boston Properties250 West 55th Street in a relocation from 667 Madison Avenue, sources said. 

The one-million-square-foot, 38-story office tower, designed by SOM, completed last year and conceived as a contemporary take on the firm’s mid-century Lever House, has attracted a string of tenants relocating from buildings deemed impressive in their own right.

Read More

Lease Beat

Morgan Stanley Inks Largest Sublease of the Year

1290-ave-of-amers

Morgan Stanley has inked the year’s largest sublease with an 11-year deal for 148,421 square feet of space at Vornado Realty Trust’s 1290 Avenue of the Americas.

The space is across the entire 12th and 13th floors, part of AXA Equitable’s 443,599 square feet in the 44-story, 2-million-square-foot tower, according to The Real Deal, which Read More

Lease Beat

State Street Consolidates at 1290 Avenue of the Americas

1290aofa

State Street Bank has signed a 10-year lease for 105,951 square feet at Vornado Realty Trust’s 1290 Avenue of the Americas, a source familiar with negotiations confirmed with The Commercial Observer.

State Street will take space formerly occupied by Microsoft, which opted to relocate to 11 Times Square, as The Commercial Observer reported late last year. The tech giant’s 230,000-square-foot lease was the third largest deal of 2012. Read More

Cover Story

Midtown Madness: Leasing Still Sluggish in Manhattan’s Priciest Market

TO GO WITH AFP STORY: US-economy-propert

Midtown Manhattan, the biggest and most expensive U.S. office market, is still adapting to New York’s post-financial-crisis economy, as technology and new media companies flood into the more affordable areas and banks remain wary of expanding in higher-priced real estate.

With construction getting under way on millions of square feet of planned Class A offices on the West Side, much of the leasing action for the year to date has centered on neighborhoods like Murray Hill, the Penn Station area and the Garment District, which are attracting companies that have been priced—or crowded—out of the technology hub in Midtown South, brokers said. Financial companies, traditionally the biggest occupiers of Midtown real estate, remained conservative, pursuing greater efficiency in their use of real estate rather than growth.

“The days of bigger is better are gone,” said Eric Thomas, senior vice president of Cresa, a specialist in tenant representation. “Capital preservation is still key. That’s why renewals still reign in many cases.” Read More

Market Report

Manhattan Office Leasing Activity Up

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The Manhattan office leasing market experienced a jump in activity of 19 percent year-over-year from February 2012, according to the March 2013 Manhattan Marketview Snapshot from CBRE. Leasing activity was also up nine percent over January 2013, the report noted.

“February leasing remained below the 60-month monthly average, so the increase in activity compared to one year ago at this time signals an improvement of the market,” said Matt Maison, Manhattan manager, research and analytics at CBRE.

The overall availability rate in Manhattan rose 20 basis points in February to 12.5 percent. Average asking rents rose two percent, or $1.12, to $60.56 per square foot, representing an increase from February 2012, when average asking rents were $54.40 per square foot. Read More

Stat of the Week

On the New York Mets and Negative Absorption

Second Section Of New York City's Elevated "Highline" Park Opens

If you were a New York Mets fan in 1986, like former Mayor Ed Koch was, the number 19 was a good thing.

That year, while rents were flat at an average of $40 per square foot despite 35 million square feet of new construction, the Mets acquired a left-handed pitcher who wore the number 19 and helped propel the team to a World Series Championship. Read More

Postings

The B Team: The Biggest Occupancy Shifts in Class B and Class A Buildings

CO 2-19 Postings

For the first time in recent history, the availability rate across Manhattan’s stock of Class B buildings is lower than that of their Class A counterparts, suggesting a flight to value, propelled in part by the latest wave of technology startups and media companies looking for affordable space. Indeed, at 10.6 percent, the current availability rate for Class B space is 170 basis points less than the Class A rate of 12.3 percent, according to Richard Persichetti of Cassidy Turley.

With Cassidy Turley’s help, The Commercial Observer decided to put a spotlight on some of the most dramatic occupancy shifts across Manhattan over the last three years. Read More

Lease Beat

Microsoft Inks 3rd Biggest Deal of 2012

microsoft_logo1

Months of negotiations between SPJ Properties and Microsoft have finally paid off, with the tech giant signing a 230,000-square-foot lease at its new Midtown headquarters at 11 Times Square – and solidifying one of the top leasing deals of the year.

The company eyed the new space for months, as rumors swirled it would be vacating Vornado’s 1290 Avenue of the Americas, and last month transaction is the third biggest non-renewal leasing transaction of 2012. Read More

Lease Beat

Negotiations Over Signage Delay Microsoft Deal

microsoft_logo

Negotiations over outdoor signage at 11 Times Square, among other issues, has delayed a deal between SPJ Properties and Microsoft expected today, sources told The Commercial Observer.

After eyeing the space for months, the company was shuffling papers around this week with owner SPJ Properties to get the deal completed; but the signing of a letter of intent, which sources said was scheduled to happen today, likely won’t be completed until after Thanksgiving, said people familiar with the deal.

The 16-year lease is for 260,000 square feet across floors four through 11, at a rate in the low $60’s, a broker who reviewed a preliminary version of the lease said. Read More

Lease Beat

Talk About Windows! Microsoft Poised to Sign 400,000-Square-Foot Lease at 11 Times Square

Microsofties.

Steven J. Pozycki has reeled in his white whale as one of the most sought after tenants in the entire city has landed at one of its most troubled office towers. According to numerous sources, Microsoft is poised to sign a long-term lease for 400,000 square feet at 11 Times Square, the office tower Mr. Pozycki’s New Jersey-based SJP Properties built just as the real estate bubble was bursting.

For months, the Seattle-based software company has been looking at new offices in New York as it mulled whether or not to leave its current home at 1290 Avenue of the Americas. Microsoft had been looking at space across Manhattan, but it seemed to have a special affinity for the West Side, having strongly considered Mort Zuckerman‘s swiftly rising 250 West 55th Street. For a time, Microsoft appeared interested in 11 Times Square but its focus faded in favor of other opportunities, until a last minute pitch by SJP brought the building back into the running and helped seal the deal. Read More

Lease Beat

Abbott Capital Management Relocates to 1290 Avenue of the Americas

1290 Avenue of the Americas (photo courtesy of CoStar)

Abbott Capital Management, a private equity firm, has inked a 10-year lease to take new office space at 1290 Avenue of the Americas, it was announced Tuesday.

The firm will be taking a 34,709-square-foot space on the ninth floor at 1290 Avenue of the Americas, which is managed by Vornado. 

John Thompson, senior director of JRT Realty, represented Abbott Capital Management in the lease deal. Franklin Speyer, Amy Fox, Michael Nahmias and Bruce Mosler, all of Cushman & Wakefield represented Vornado in the deal. Read More

Lease Beat

Microsoft Bumped From 250 West 55th Street

11 Times Square

Microsoft has been bumped from 250 West 55th Street, leaving it with two likely space possibilities: a renewal deal at its current home at 1290 Avenue of the Americas or a relocation to 11 Times Square several sources familiar with the company say.

The company had been in advanced talks to take space at the Read More

Lease Beat

Microsoft Close To NYC Headquarters Decision

250 West 55th Street

In a leasing market starved for activity, eyes in the brokerage business have turned to Microsoft, which is on the cusp of a roughly 225,000-square-foot lease for its Manhattan headquarters.

The software company, according to sources with direct knowledge of its real estate decision making, has whittled its choices to two locations, a renewal at its current home in 1290 Avenue of the Americas or a move to a new office tower being built on Eighth Avenue by Boston Properties, 250 West 55th Street. Read More

Uh Oh!

Sixth Avenue to Run Red with Vacancies

There will be blood II

Leasing has been off pace in the first half of the year and the slowdown hasn’t played out at the city’s fringes.

Sixth Avenue, one of the Midtown’s central corridors that is often referred to as Corporate Row because of the large, regal office buildings there and the avenue’s roster of Fortune 500 companies, appears poised to become flush with vacancies. Read More