Charged up: Tesla inks lease for showroom at 860 Washington

After a year of talks, electric car giant is relocating to Meatpacking

Elon Musk abd 860 Washington
Elon Musk and a rendering of 860 Washington Street in the Meatpacking District

Tesla Motors is pulling into a new space at 860 Washington Street in the Meatpacking District, sources told The Real Deal. The electric car manufacturer had been scoping out a new Manhattan showroom for over a year before settling on the space at the property owned by Romanoff Equities and Property Group Partners.

Tesla’s lease gives it about 7,800 square feet on the ground floor of the 10-story, 114,000-square-foot office-and-retail building, which was completed in June, sources said. A Tesla showroom and service center would occupy the majority of the ground floor, which has 23-foot-high ceilings.

Asking rent on the ground floor is about $600 per square foot, sources said.

Tesla will leave its current Manhattan showroom at L&L Holding’s 511 West 25th Street, which became the company’s first East Coast sales and service center when it took space there in 2011.

Negotiations for the Meatpacking District space involved a series of twists and turns. Back in November, Tesla was the top contender to take the space.  Starbucks then advanced in talks to open a high-end restaurant and roastery across the bottom two floors, but ultimately signed at Vornado Realty Trust and Aurora Capital Associates’ 61 Ninth Avenue, at West 15th Street, in April. The following month, Tesla was back in the running at 860 Washington. 

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The retail component offers more than 180 feet of corner frontage, including 103 feet along West 13th Street, according to marketing materials.

Cushman & Wakefield’s Gregory Tannor and Stuart Romanoff, who represented the landlords, declined to comment, as did Chris DeCrosta of Crown Retail Services, who represented Tesla.

The top eight floors will hold office tenants such as health-centric developer Delos Living and e-commerce giant Alibaba Group. The office asking rents range from $150 to $200 per square foot, a record for the neighborhood.

Earlier this year, the Palo Alto-based company’s market cap was just over $33 billion. Founder and CEO Elon Musk has said he expects it to be a $700 billion company by 2025. There have been several challenges along the way, however, including serious competition in the electric car space from General Motors and a fatal accident related to its autopilot technology. 

In March, Tesla opened its first Brooklyn showroom, at LIVWRK’s office conversion at 160 Van Brunt Street in Red Hook.