Downtown New York Towers Empty as Best Market Falters (Update1)
March 30, 2010
By: David M. Levitt

Downtown Manhattan, where demand for office space began to surge three years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, is about to lose its spot as the best- performing U.S. market.

Vacancies may exceed 14 percent of the area’s 87 million square feet by late 2011, empty space that’s equivalent to four Empire State Buildings and the highest rate since 1997, according to property broker Cushman & Wakefield Inc. That doesn’t include the 4.4 million square feet of offices in two towers now under construction at the World Trade Center site. Those are scheduled for completion in 2013. ...

...  The availability rate for downtown Manhattan offices was 12.7 percent in the first quarter, up 1.3 percentage points from the previous three months, according to Studley Inc., a New York-based brokerage that specializes in finding space for tenants rather than representing landlords. Midtown’s availability rate dropped 0.9 percentage point to 13.2 percent. ...

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