Time Warner move will leave a bare Midtown, councilman says

July 09, 2013 11:00AM

City Councilman Dan Garodnick is worried that Time Warner’s reported move to Hudson Yards will leave Midtown with yet another big empty office building, DNAinfo reported.

The media giant has struck a deal to relocate to Related Companies’ 80-story skyscraper planned for the rail yards at 10th Avenue and West 33rd Street, as previously reported.

Under the tentative agreement, Time Warner would lease its Columbus Circle space for about five years, or until the tower is completed.

In addition, the proposed Midtown East rezoning, which will allow for taller skyscrapers in the eastern part of the neighborhood, will bring even more new office space to the market.

Garodnick told DNAinfo that new skyscrapers and the already barren Columbus Circle will create more office space than there are companies to fill it. To abate that, the Midtown East rezoning proposal has a “sunrise provision” that would prevent developers from constructing new buildings for five years.

“Ostensibly the purpose of that five-year sunrise provision is to protect commercial developments in other parts of the city from competition from East Midtown,” Garodnick told DNAinfo.

Manhattan is tied with Washington, D.C., for having the lowest office vacancy rate in the U.S., according to recent data from research firm REIS. [DNAinfo]Mark Maurer