The cable channel Showtime Networks is eyeing a move from its current home in a Theater District skyscraper to a rehabilitated century-year-old building at 200 Fifth Avenue at Madison Square Park, several sources said.
Showtime, a division of the CBS Corporation, currently leases 172,600 square feet of space at the 2.4 million-square-foot 1633 Broadway at 51st Street; the lease is set to expire in 2010, according to data from CoStar.
Real estate investment company L&L Holding bought 200 Fifth Avenue, at the corner of 23rd Street, in 2007 for $480 million and is pouring another $120 million into the 800,000-square-foot building, where advertising firm Grey Group is taking 370,000 square feet.
Showtime is looking to lease as much as 300,000 square feet at the 14-story building known as the Toy Center South, one source said, but another said the number was lower. Showtime could also stay put at the Paramount Group’s 48-story, 1633 Broadway, which CoStar shows has 472,000 square feet available, or move to another location.
“They can definitely stay at 1633 Broadway, and it would not cost a dollar in capital outlays,” one industry source, not involved in the search, said. “But 200 Fifth is much more dynamic. They are certainly looking at the building.”
The cable channel is being represented by Scott Gottlieb and Michael Laginestra, vice presidents for commercial brokerage CB Richard Ellis’ tri-state region, a spokesperson for the company said, but declined to comment further.
A spokesperson for Showtime would only confirm the company put out a request for proposals to retain a commercial brokerage. L&L Holding did not respond to a request for comment.
Showtime was part of media conglomerate Viacom, based at 1515 Broadway in Times Square, until the company split in 2005 into the CBS Corporation and Viacom.
A 1994 lease deal that consolidated and expanded Viacom’s presence at 1633 Broadway, that included the Showtime Network, won a most ingenious deal of the year award from the Real Estate Board of New York for brokers Gottlieb, Laginestra, and Martin Turchin, at the time with commercial brokerage Edward S. Gordan Company, which later became part of CBRE.