Record price fall for Class A office space in Midtown

By Adam Pincus | January 09, 2009 09:28AM

Midtown Class A office asking rents suffered their steepest declines on record last month as the financial firms which dominate the area continued to shed space, according to a new report from commercial real estate services firm Colliers ABR.

The average price in newer Midtown buildings fell by $6.34 per square foot to $82.11 per square foot from November to December, the report issued yesterday said.

“Midtown continued to take a drubbing in December,” the report’s authors said.

It is the sharpest decline the firm has recorded. Meanwhile, the vacancy rate for Class A buildings in Midtown overall was 9.9 percent, up 4.1 points from the same month last year.

Leasing in the financial sector remained weak, as Citigroup returned 330,000 square feet to the Midtown submarket at 153 East 53rd Street, the report said.

For Class A buildings in all of Manhattan, vacancies rose to 9.1 percent, their highest level since June 2005, and asking rents fell to $75.96 per square foot from $85.69 a year earlier