The Plan

The Plan

The Plan: Lester Schwab Katz & Dwyer

Black floors off-set the predominantly white design of the office for a clean, and highly modern look. “It’s a beautiful space for lawyers,” said Mr. Spector, “who are not used to beautiful space." (Photo: Ben Gancsos)

When law firm Lester Schwab Katz & Dwyer made the barely five block move from 120 Broadway to 100 Wall Street they took it upon themselves to adopt a radically new aesthetic for their two-floor, 40,000-square-foot space. The 40-year-old litigation firm turned to the Spector Group for an open-plan office that looks more Silicon Valley than big law.

“It’s a beautiful space for lawyers—who are not used to beautiful space,” said Spector Group principal Marc Spector. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 1400 Broadway [Updated]

A newly added 1,000-square-foot terrace with views of the Empire State Building, Brooklyn and the Statue of Liberty.

A penthouse suite with sweet views of the city is available for lease at Empire State Realty Trust’s 1400 Broadway with a rent of $75,515 per month.

ESRT has converted the top two floors of the building between West 38th and West 39th Streets from multi-tenant space to one contiguous unit, with a newly added 1,000-square-foot terrace with views of the Empire State Building, Brooklyn and the Statue of Liberty. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 1156 Avenue of the Americas

Credit APF Properties.

A Midtown building constructed in the early part of the 20th century is getting upgraded for the 21st. APF Properties will implement a four-month, $4 million renovation by Sydness Architects at its 1156 Avenue of the Americas property starting next month, APF Principal Kenneth Aschendorf told Commercial Observer. The nine-story structure on the corner of West 45th Street will be outfitted with a new glass entrance, a new lobby with ceilings twice its current height, new elevators, a new security system and multiple improvements to its office floors, Mr. Aschendorf said.

“We find that there are a lot of tenants out there who want the prewar feel and the prewar architecture, but they want a top-quality building,” he said. “Even tenants in non-creative fields are looking for more prewar space. We decided to do something that was more than cosmetic.” Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 1560 Broadway

1560 Broadway

Three is better than one—in buildings as much as anything else. Landlords SL Green Realty Corp. and Jeff Sutton at 1552 Broadway and Newmark Holdings and the Benenson Family at 1560 Broadway tapped Rosen Johnson Architects to figure out a way to link their two buildings, and smush in a third in between the two (which was demolished). Rosen Johnson principals Paul Rosen and Anthony Johnson designed an innovative new scheme for the space with great retail potential just off Times Square. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: Now What at 155 Avenue of the Americas

Now What's office space.

When Paul Barnett founded branding and marketing company Now What in 2004, he was the sole employee, making working out of his apartment on the Lower East Side economical and feasible. Since then, the company has ballooned to 30 people and has worked with high-profile clients including Google, ESPN, NBC, General Motors and Novartis. Yet Mr. Barnett remained adamant that his office still retained the warmth of a home.

“There’s no division between in-work and out-of-work,” said Mr. Barnett. “As a millennial, the people you work with are considered family. There’s no big division between work-time and home-time.” Read More

The Plan

The Plan: View the Space’s Office at 142 West 36th Street

View the Space's office at 142 West 36th Street.

View the Space, a cloud-based commercial real estate leasing start-up, has moved into its new digs after slumming it on West 30th Street. The firm’s new space, designed by The Mufson Partnership, spans 7,400 square feet on the entire 12th floor at Herald Square Properties’ 142 West 36th Street just off Broadway.

VTS was delivered turnkey space with exposed ceilings and ductwork as well as polished concrete floors. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 635-641 Avenue of the Americas

635-641 Avenue of the Americas

SL Green Realty Corp. is nearing completion of its 12-month, $15 million renovation and recombining of what used to be two separate buildings at 635-641 Avenue of the Americas between West 19th and West 20th Streets, Steven Durels, the company’s director of leasing and real property, told Commercial Observer. The company owns two of the three buildings that used to comprise one department store in the Ladies Mile Historic District after architect William Hume completed it in 1902. And shortly after purchasing the two buildings for $173 million in 2012, SL Green set about turning the building at 635 Avenue of the Americas, which had become an auto mechanic instruction school, into the second half of a repositioned office property. “When we bought the building, it was apparent to us that there was the opportunity to create something special,” Mr. Durels said. The building at 641 was already a complete office building. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 140 William Street

Dancers in the window at 140 William Street.

At the start of the current school year last month, Pace University unveiled the second phase of its renovation project at Pace Performing Arts’ home at 140 William Street.

Plans included the conversion of the seventh floor and penthouse into a design studio, sound studio, mechanical and electrical equipment rooms and a rooftop terrace for special events. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: The Madison Square Portfolio

Renderings of Madison Square Portfolio

The Kaufman Organization’s ongoing renovations of three Midtown South office buildings in what was once known as the “Ring Portfolio” are moving forward with a new name and a very new look.

The company, which in April acquired four buildings that it now calls the “Madison Square Portfolio” through a 99-year lease with Extell Development Company, is sprucing up three of the long-vacant properties—19 West 24th Street,13 West 27th Street and 45 West 27th Street—ahead of a planned June 2015 occupancy date, said Grant Greenspan, a principal with Kaufman. (The fourth building in the portfolio is already open at 119-125 West 24th Street.)  Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 12 East 13th Street

Living Room

A former garage in Greenwich Village will welcome luxury condo residents in the spring of 2015 through a conversion by CetraRuddy. Developers DHA Capital and Continental Properties are turning 12 East 13th Street into an 8-unit residence and ground-floor retail property after the architecture firm designed a 4-story glass addition featuring terraced homes and a 5,700-square-foot penthouse with an asking price of $30.5 million, according to a listing on the condo development’s website. “We really wanted to plan each apartment so that they would have these magnificent living rooms,” said John Cetra, AIA, the founding principal of CetraRuddy. “It’s a building where I think the apartments really feel like home.” Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 275 Seventh Avenue

FreeWheel Media office space at 275 Seventh Avenue.

When tech advertising firm FreeWheel Media, which was recently acquired by Comcast Corporation, decided to move to a full-floor space at 275 Seventh Avenue, the company knew it wanted an open plan with collaborative offices and break-out spaces.

FreeWheel hired the architecture firm Fogarty Finger, which two years ago started a $10 million renovation of the 600,000-square-foot Art Deco building, to design its 19,000-square-foot 24th floor office. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: The Brooklyn Whale Building

The Whale Building.

The Brooklyn Whale Building, a 400,000-square-foot industrial property along the Sunset Park waterfront, is being redesigned for commercial tenants, especially those in the tech, media and creative arts fields.

Boddewyn Gaynor Architects is working on the $5 million renovation of the seven-floor, full-block former Whale Oil Company headquarters at 14 53rd Street. 601 West Associates, headed by Harry Skydell, acquired the site in 2011 for $25.4 million and the renovations commenced about two years ago. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: GLG’s Innovative New Offices


Since GLG moved into its two-floor, 64,000-square-foot office at 60 East 42nd Street early last month, the 245 employees in the one-on-one professional learning firm’s New York City headquarters have enjoyed an office with a full-service barista bar, 33 conference rooms named after historical figures and a ping pong table for active five-minute breaks. Dennis O’Brien, the firm’s vice president of IT and office operations, and Richard Socarides, its head of public affairs, called from one of the office’s sound-sealed conference call rooms to dish on the space designed by Clive Wilkinson Architects. “People walk around smiling,” Mr. Socarides said of the staff’s reaction to their new digs near Grand Central. “For us, the experience has been amazing because it shows us how much the physical environment can transform the work experience.” Read More

The Plan

Inside the 10th Floor of 55 Hudson Yards

55 Hudson Yards.

The Related Companies’ 55 Hudson Yards, a 51-story, 1.4 million-square-foot office tower rising from 11th Avenue between 33rd and 34th Streets, will offer a terrace overlooking the adjacent Hudson River Park and its surroundings to whoever snaps up the 28,000-square-foot 10th floor. Related and its partner, Oxford Properties Group, tapped master architects Eugene Kohn, of Kohn Pederson Fox, and Kevin Roche, of Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates, to design the tower, slated to be standing by the end of 2017; and the two veterans arranged it with a 10-floor base that opens into a prime tier where the building sets back. “We think it’s a spectacular floor,” said Andrew Cantor, a Related vice president who is on the firm’s Hudson Yards team. “We would expect a larger user might want to take it as part of a bigger occupation.” Read More