Michael J. Fox (or his foundation at least) Relocates


The Michael J. Fox Foundation to Fight Parkinson’s Disease is moving up in the world—uptown, that is, to West 37th Street and Seventh Avenue.

The non-profit has subleased nearly 30,000 square feet for seven years from finance firm Liquidnet, at 498 Seventh Avenue, the Commercial Observer has learned.

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The foundation dedicated to aggressive research towards a cure for Parkinsons—from which Mr. Fox himself suffers—is vacating digs at 90 Broad Street for the entire 18th floor at 798 Seventh Avenue.

The move away from downtown, traditionally a hub for non-profits, was motivated by a desire to be in Midtown, closer to business partners, and to entertain in larger space, said brokers familiar with the deal.

The Garment Center building is 99 percent leased, with a diverse tenant roster that includes several divisions of advertising giant WPP, Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance and fashion label Betsey Johnson.

Liquidnet, an institutional trading network, has two floors in the building, and opted to sublet one after not expanding as quickly as anticipated, said a source familiar with the transaction. They will pay for a complete build-out of the space for the Michael J. Fox Foundation, which plans to move in the first or second quarter of 2012.

J.P. Morgan Investment Management acquired a 49.9 percent stake in the building from a Canadian pension fund for $205 million in July. The transaction valued the 933,000-square-foot property, managed by George Comfort & Sons, at $439 per square foot.

A CB Richard Ellis team of Molly Concannon, Joseph Mangiacotti and Howard Fiddle represented the landlord, and asking rent was $42 per square foot. Brian Siegel of The Lawrence Group represented the tenant.