The Firms

May 19, 2010 12:07 PM

Proskauer Rose Has a New Office...And It's Spectacular

Posted by Brian Baxter

Picture 3 Proskauer Rose's quest for new office space in Manhattan has been one of the city's worst-kept real estate secrets for months. On Tuesday the firm finally confirmed that it is moving into new digs at 11 Times Square, where it will be an anchor tenant and have its name prominently placed on the building's exterior.

The New York Law Journal, an Am Law Daily sibling publication, reports that Proskauer's long-term lease for 400,000 square feet of space includes an option to expand, thanks to favorable rate conditions for tenants in the ailing commercial real estate market.

"We're taking advantage of what I think is really the opportune time in terms of the New York real estate market," Proskauer chairman Allen Fagin told the NYLJ. "I'm not sure [a law firm in New York] has ever been offered to have a prominent sign on a prominent building." (The K&L Gates brand dominates the Pittsburgh skyline.)

Proskauer's shingle will be exclusively displayed on a 50-foot-long, 20-foot-high backlit sign near the top of the 40-story building, the NYLJ reports. Fagin told the NYLJ that Proskauer will leave its current Manhattan office space in The Morgan Stanley Building at 1585 Broadway by the first quarter of 2011 to move its roughly 350 New York lawyers into 11 Times Square.

Developer SJP Properties broke ground on 11 Times Square in May 2007, just before the collapse of the real estate bubble. The 1.1 million square-foot glass tower, which is scheduled to be completed in June, had been unable to secure a single tenant until Proskauer stepped forward. And the firm had strong incentives to do so.

As previously reported by The New York Times, Morgan Stanley is thought to be providing a subsidy worth tens of millions of dollars to the firm in order to vacate the 1585 Broadway headquarters of the financial giant, which wants to consolidate its operations in one building. Proskauer, the Times reported, plans to use the sum to offset the costs of moving and building out new office space at 11 Times Square.

Fagin declined to confirm the report by The Times when asked by the NYLJ. A Morgan Stanley representative did not respond to an NYLJ request for comment.

Ronald Sernau, cochair of Proskauer's real estate department, represented the firm in lease negotiations. Gerald Uram, chair of the real estate group at New York's Davis & Gilbert, advised SJP Properties along with tax of counsel Stephen Foley. The NYLJ reports the deal is the largest office relocation in Manhattan in more than two years.

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