Downtown law firm in market for one of city’s largest leases

By Adam Pincus | June 18, 2010 03:15PM

John Cushman

The international law firm Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy headquartered at 1 Chase Manhattan Plaza in the Financial District is in the market for about 350,000 square feet, sources said.

The firm, which occupies about 300,000 square feet in the building, tapped Cushman & Wakefield this month to represent it in a hunt for new space or a renewal, sources said.

The requirement is one of the largest in the city currently. There are about a half-dozen companies looking for more than 300,000 square feet, one industry source said, including accounting firm Deloitte.

Milbank, Tweed, is the second largest tenant in the 2.2-million-square-foot tower, after the owner JPMorgan Chase, according to data from CoStar Group. The lease expires in June 2013.

Data from CoStar show that the relationship between the brokerage and Milbank, Tweed extends at least as far back as 1998, when company co-chairman John Cushman brokered the lease that put Milbank in 1 Chase Manhattan Plaza. He is a lead broker on the current assignment, a source said.

Milbank, Tweed, which has additional offices in the United States, Europe and Asia, also represented the commercial brokerage when the Italian firm Ifil Investments, now known as Exor, bought a controlling interest in Cushman & Wakefield for $563 million in 2006.

Milbank, Tweed did not respond to requests for comment. A spokesperson for Cushman & Wakefield declined to comment and John Cushman was not immediately available.