Empire State’s operator takes official steps to become a REIT

November 29, 2011 01:59PM

Malkin Holdings, operator of the Empire State Building, said it “embarked on a course of action” to become a real estate investment trust, in a regulatory filing today, Bloomberg reported. As The Real Deal previously reported, the Malkins had been considering this move since at least April. Documents could be filed with the SEC to make the 2.9 million-square-foot tower a publicly traded entity as soon as February.

The landmarked tower, which has undergone a $550 million capital improvements program in recent years, would present a lucrative opportunity for investors, as prices for trophy towers rise as the recession fades.

The planned REIT will include two other assets owned by the Malkin family — 1 Grand Central, 250 West 57th Street — the New York Times reported.

Two partnerships led by Peter Malkin and his son Anthony Malkin own the 102-story tower– still Manhattan’s tallest (for a while at least) — in conjunction with the estate of Leona Helmsley. [Bloomberg] and [NYT]