Manhattan office leasing climbed to a record in the fourth quarter, driven by large agreements by companies such as Citigroup Inc. (C:US) seeking cost-effective real estate, according to brokerage Studley Inc.
Leases were signed for 12.7 million square feet (1.2 million square meters), up from 5.8 million a year earlier, Studley said in a draft report. Citigroup’s 2.6 million-square-foot renewal at 388 and 390 Greenwich St. in lower Manhattan was the largest deal. The three next-biggest transactions also were downtown, a sign that large space users are capitalizing on that area’s lower prices and government incentives, said Steven Coutts, Studley’s vice president for research...
“Manhattan’s core office-space users -- major banks, law firms and a wide range of professional and business services -- remain focused on containing costs,” Coutts said in an e-mail. “Making space work harder is becoming more widespread.”
Manhattan’s office availability rate -- which measures empty space and offices scheduled to become vacant in the next 12 months -- was 12.2 percent, unchanged from a year earlier. That indicates the fourth-quarter’s leasing, the highest in Studley records dating to 1995, did little to tighten the market. The rate reached 13.8 percent in the middle of 2009...Manhattan Office Leasing Sets a Record as Citigroup Leads Deals
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