Condé Nast may have a fight on its hands.
The publisher is trying to change the terms of its lease at One World Trade Center, as it searches for a new headquarters in Midtown.
But the plan might face resistance: The existing lease at One World Trade lasts until 2039, according to the New York Post. What’s more, the Durst Organization, which developed the building with the Port Authority, isn’t afraid of litigation. The landlord recently won a court battle against Amazon over a soured lease deal at West 34th Street.
“They’re going to dig in like hell,” a source who was not involved in the building told the Post, in reference to the developers.
“They gave Condé Nast the moon to move there. Now, six years later, Condé says, ‘Well, we can’t afford it any more and Anna [Wintour] doesn’t like it any more, so we’re out of there?’”
Condé Nast signed a lease for the downtown space in 2011 — a step praised as bold. But the arrangement had its critics: Many saw the lease, which started at $60 per square foot, as a “sweetheart” deal born at a time when the city was trying to revive the downtown area in the wake of 9/11.
According to the Post, the Port Authority brokered a deal to reimburse the Durst Organization $200 million for the lease Condé previously held at Four Times Square, which was supposed to expire in 2019. Generous tax rebates were part of the mix.
The publisher has a lease for 21 floors at One World Trade. However, in 2018, it started subleasing 10 floors as it downsized its staff and shuttered several print titles. [NYP] — Sylvia Varnham O’Regan