It looks like Condé Nast will be giving creative street cred to 1 World Trade Center. After months of negotiations, The New York Times reports that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the major glossy publisher have reached an estimated $2 billion deal on a 25-year lease agreement for the now infamous World Trade Center address.
Condé Nast will move 5,000 of its employees from a smattering of midtown office buildings to a sleek one million square-feet chunk of real estate on floors 20 through 41 of the new World Trade Center building. The conclusion of the agreement marks a significant victory for politicians, city planners, and businessmen alike who are all looking for ways to transform an area simultaneously marred by the 2001 9/11 attacks and a brutal recession that caused many of its finance industry tenants to shutter their doors.
For the Port Authority, securing a deal with Condé Nast was worth succumbing to the publisher’s lengthy demands. Foremost on the list of concessions was that Port Authority would take over the remaining four or five years of Condé Nast’s lease in Times Square in 2014 when the publisher is expected to move into the new building. The Port Authority further reassured the company that its famous 100-strong fleet of black cars for its high-flying VIPs would be granted safe passage in the highly secured area around the new building’s perimeter. The Port Authority also agreed to a starting rent of around $60 per square foot—about the same rent the publisher pays now in its comparatively outdated 1999 base at 4 Times Square.
With Condé Nast firmly committed to the move, a project to reinvigorate Lower Manhattan with creative types is underway. Sirius Satellite Radio and J. Crew are considering making the move downtown, while The Daily News and American Media (publisher of Playboy, Men’s Fitness, and other titles) will be moving around the corner to 4 New York Plaza next month. Condé Nast’s lease is expected to gain final approval from the Port Authority on May 26.