Law Firm Covington & Burling Expanding Digs to 193K SF at NY Times Building

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Law firm Covington & Burling has signed a 32,623-square-foot expansion of its lease at Forest City Realty Trust’s The New York Times Building at 620 Eighth Avenue, the landlord’s broker CBRE announced today.

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The law practice will take the entire 44th floor of the Renzo Piano-designed building between West 40th and West 41st Streets, growing its total footprint to 193,623 square feet in the 1.8-million-square-foot property. The asking rent in the 10-year deal was $100 per square foot, according to a CBRE spokeswoman.

Covington & Burling has occupied 160,000-square-foot offices on the entire 39th through 43rd floors since moving into the structure in 2007.

“As Midtown Manhattan’s premier office address, the New York Times Building is home to some of the city’s most prestigious and successful firms,” Ali Esmaeilzadeh, a senior vice president at Forest City New York (the Cleveland-based landlord’s New York City arm), said in a prepared statement to CO. “This expansion is another indication of the continuing strength of the Manhattan office market and the appeal of the New York Times Building.”

Savills Studley’s Mitch Steir, David Goldstein and Daniel Horowitz represented Covington & Burling in the transaction, but declined to comment via a spokeswoman.

“We are pleased that Covington & Burling has increased their commitment at 620 Eighth Avenue,” CBRE’s Howard Fiddle, who handled the deal for the landlord with colleagues Evan Fiddle and Evan Haskell, said in a statement. “Since the… building first opened in 2007, it has consistently outperformed the market in terms of occupancy and rental rates under the management of Forest City Ratner Companies.”

Forest City and The New York Times developed the building in partnership in 2007. The Times’ newsroom occupies the base through the 27 floor of the 52-story tower, according to Forest City’s website. And the developer owns the 28 through 52 floors.

The newspaper sold the leasehold of its 750,000-square-foot office condo in the building to W.P. Carey for $225 million in 2009, and then leased back the space for 15 years, according to The Real Deal. However, the Times plans to repurchase its portion of the office building from W.P. Carey for $250 million, as TRD reported in February.