Desire for office space bottoming out in topless Times Square

Vacancies are on the rise as workers flee for other neighborhoods
September 02, 2015 12:50PM

Times Square’s problems extend beyond the topless panhandlers covering the tabloids, with office vacancies on the rise as tenants increasingly disperse across the city.

Weakening demand for office space at the “Crossroads of the World” means almost 13 percent of the district’s Class A office space was available in June, compared to roughly 6 percent in December 2013, according to commercial brokerage Savills Studley.

The Durst Organization’s 4 Times Square, in particular, is feeling the effects of a trend that has seen Condo Nast leave the building for a move downtown to One World Trade Center, according to Bloomberg. Law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom has also announced its intention to leave 4 Times Square to relocate to Brookfield Property Partners’ Manhattan West megaproject.

Other deserters include financial information company Markit, which is leaving for 5 Manhattan West, and engineering firm AKF Group, which moved to Lower Manhattan.

While Times Square’s convenient public transit has long made it attractive for office tenants, workers in focus groups have complained about panhandlers, vagrants and crowds. [Bloomberg]Rey Mashayekhi