By Gail Kalinoski
McDermott Will & Emery LLP is taking 105,539 square feet in a 20-year lease at One Vanderbilt Avenue, the 58-story, 1.7 million-square-foot trophy office tower SL Green Realty Corp. is building across from Grand Central Terminal in Midtown Manhattan. It is the second law firm and third largest tenant at the planned 1,401-foot-tall skyscraper.
The law firm, currently located at nearby 340 Madison Ave., will be leasing floors 44 through 46 and floor 67. The $3 billion tower designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates is expected to be completed in 2020.
“As a firm, we are inspired by innovation and are excited to put our brand on a building that reflects that. We have significantly grown our footprint and diversified our client offerings in New York, and we’re confident that the move to One Vanderbilt will help us build an even more formidable presence in the city,” John Yoshimura, McDermott Will & Emery COO, said in a prepared statement.
McDermott Will & Emery, which has approximately 300 employees in its New York office, is an international firm with a diversified business practice. It also has offices in Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Washington D.C., and Silicon Valley and Orange County in California. International locations include Frankfurt, London, Paris, Brussels, Milan and Seoul.
One Vanderbilt is currently 31 percent leased and on track to meet SL Green’s goal of having 37 percent of its space leased by the end of 2018.
McDermott Will & Emery joins Greenberg Traurig as the second major international law firm to take space in the tower. SL Green announced in January that Greenberg Traurig was leasing four floors at One Vanderbilt in a 15-year lease starting in January 2022. The lease is for 135,000 square feet, according to Yardi Matrix data. The four main tenants signed so far total 381,382 square feet. They include TD Bank, the first tenant to take space at the tower with 200,000 square feet; DZ Bank and its affiliate DVB Bank with 35,382 square feet; and Dinex, taking 11,000 square feet of restaurant space, Yardi Matrix reported. SL Green said in April 2017 that Chef Daniel Boulud was developing a new culinary concept for the tower featuring a restaurant and cafe.
“Global leaders like McDermott Will & Emery are choosing One Vanderbilt because it offers the most advanced and amenitized new office construction right at the doorstep to Grand Central Terminal in the heart of East Midtown. The momentum we’re seeing at One Vanderbilt, two years ahead of opening, reaffirms East Midtown’s position as the premier business destination in New York,” Andrew Mathias, SL Green president, said in a prepared statement.
Moshe Sukenik and Noel Flagg of Newmark Knight Frank represented McDermott Will & Emery and Robert Alexander, Sarah Pontius, Ryan Alexander and Emily Jones of CBRE represented SL Green in the transaction.
East Midtown Manhattan Towers
SL Green, which broke ground on the tower in October 2016, has been planning the skyscraper for several years. A major key to moving forward on the project was a deal the developer struck with New York City in May 2015 to contribute $220 million to upgrade transit infrastructure around Grand Central Terminal, including creating connections between the two buildings and improving access to subway and commuter train lines.
One Vanderbilt won’t be the only new trophy tower in East Midtown Manhattan. In February, JPMorgan Chase announced plans to build a new 2.5 million-square-foot headquarters on the site of its current home at 270 Park Ave. The tower, expected to contain 70 to 75 stories, is the first skyscraper planned in East Midtown Manhattan since a rezoning was approved last summer.
Image courtesy of SL Green Realty Corp.