Two of the nation’s leading professional sports leagues are deepening their roots in Manhattan with major office leases in Midtown. Major League Baseball (MLB) and the National Basketball Association (NBA) will occupy space in office towers about a home run’s length from each other.
MLB will lease about 400,000 sq. ft. (37,120 sq. m.) at 1271 Avenue of the Americas, or Sixth Avenue, in 2018 and will occupy the space the following year. It’s the same space Time, Inc., occupied for several decades before relocating. The building is part of Rockefeller Center on the west side of Sixth Avenue; most of the iconic Art Deco development is east of Sixth, fronting Fifth Avenue.
MLB will occupy six floors in the 2.1 million-sq.-ft. (195,000-sq.-m.) tower and will have exclusive use of an eighth-floor outside terrace. Batting cages, perhaps. Completed in 1959, 1271 is undergoing a $600-million redevelopment.
The NBA, meanwhile, just completed a 175,000-sq.-ft. (16,260-sq.-m.) lease extension through 2035 at 645 Fifth Avenue — Olympic Tower, which opened in 1976. The mixed-use, 51-story tower was developed by Aristotle Onassis and sold for $1 billion to Oxford Properties Group and Crown Acquisitions in two transactions, in 2012 and 2015. Slam dunk: If you have to ask what a condo at this swanky address goes for …
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the Empire State, some minor-league-by-comparison projects are under way — they’re major league to the communities that won them. They include: