Archdiocese takes 142K sf at Feil’s 488 Madison

Roman Catholic institution consolidating space around city

Archdiocese Takes 142K SF at Feil’s 488 Madison
A photo illustration of Feil Organization CEO Jeffrey Feil and 488 Madison Avenue (Getty, Google Maps)

In a leap of faith, the Archdiocese of New York is consolidating its office space in Midtown Manhattan.

The Catholic diocese is leasing 142,000 square feet from the Feil Organization at 488 Madison Avenue, the Commercial Observer reported. The archdiocese is expected to relocate to the building between East 51st and West 52nd streets some time next year.

While a sizable lease for Feil, it’s more trouble for Manhattan’s office market, as the archdiocese has been gradually reducing its administrative office leases for the past decade. The diocese is leaving behind 1011 First Avenue; there’s no indication as to what will happen with that property yet, according to the Staten Island Advance.

The asking rent for the 30-year lease wasn’t disclosed. The average asking rent in Midtown Manhattan in the fourth quarter was $82.89 per square foot, according to CBRE.

Andrew Wiener represented Feil in-house. CBRE’s Mary Ann Tighe and Lauren Crowley Corrinet represented the archdiocese.

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Other tenants at 488 Madison include law firm Kudman Trachten Aloe Posner, Shawmut Design and Construction and Standard Security Life Insurance Company of New York. The famed St. Patrick’s Cathedral is across East 51st Street, a likely selling point to the archdiocese.

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If the deal had been signed last month, the Archdiocese of New York’s lease would’ve been one of the five largest signed in Manhattan in December — it may qualify for that distinction for the first month of 2024.

Leasing activity in the Manhattan office market jumped by 27 percent from the third quarter to the fourth, according to Colliers, as tenants signed 8.23 million square feet of deals during the final three months of last year. Total leasing activity for the year, however, was 6 percent below that of 2022 and the office availability rate in the borough remained at a record high.

Holden Walter-Warner