Aon is taking even more space at Brookfield’s One Liberty Plaza

Insurance and risk firm leases another full floor at the office tower

Aug.August 03, 2017 03:45 PM

David Cheikin and One Liberty Plaza (Credit: Bookfield)

Aon is taking another floor Downtown at One Liberty Plaza, bringing its total footprint in the building to 237,000 square feet after inking a deal to relocate there earlier this year.

The insurance and risk-management firm signed a 34,000-square-foot lease on the 28th floor after taking four floors earlier this year, according to landlord Brookfield Property Partners.

“I think what we’re seeing is that most of the companies coming into our portfolio right now are cautious about the amount of space they take, but in the subsequent months or year they’re seeing a lot growth in their business,” said David Cheikin, Brookfield’s vice president of leasing.”

The asking rent for the space was $63 per square foot, and the lease has a term of 10 years, according to Brookfield.

Cheikin said the 2.3 million-square-foot tower is on track to be 95 percent leased by the end of the year. Brookfield, he said, has been working to fill some 650,000 square feet of space that was either empty or set to become vacant at the start of the year after Zurich American Insurance Company inked a deal to relocate to Silverstein Properties’ 4 World Trade Center, and a large block of space formerly leased to Goldman Sachs became available.

Around the same time Aon signed its original 203,000-square-foot lease in the building, cosmetics company New Avon inked a deal to take a little more than 91,000 square feet, as The Real Deal first reported.

Business Insider then signed a lease for 88,000 square feet, and Brookfield has a lease out with the New York City Economic Development Corp. for 220,000 square feet.

Cheikin said there’s strong demand for a property like One Liberty, which sits right across the street from the World Trade Center, and is priced at a significant discount to the new construction in the area. Spotify earlier this year signed a lease at Silverstein’s Four World Trade Center, where the asking rent was reportedly in the $80s per square foot.

“It’s a nice price point and someone can realize the benefits of moving to Lower Manhattan,” Cheikin explained. “That said, they can get a much more discounted price on Water Street. That’s where Aon’s coming from; it just was not an attractive option for them.”

The property has benefited from increased activity in Downtown. Leasing activity climbed 14.8 percent year-over-year during the first half of 2017 to 3.7 million square feet, according to a report from Colliers International. That was the best six-month period the market’s seen over the past three years.

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