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Amazon Expands NYC Presence With Major Hudson Yards Office Lease

Hudson Yards in Manhattan

When Amazon made its stunning decision to cancel plans to build a second headquarters in Long Island City, it said it would continue building its presence in New York City. Now it has cemented those plans, taking on a big office lease on Manhattan's Far West Side.

Following months of speculation over where the e-commerce giant would plant its flag, Amazon has leased 335K SF at 410 10th Ave., SL Green's redevelopment of 460 34th St., The Wall Street Journal reports. Amazon plans to fill the space with 1,500 employees, but said it won't receive any state or city tax breaks as part of the deal.

“We plan to continue to hire and grow organically across our 18 tech hubs, including New York City,” an Amazon spokeswoman told The New York Times.

The deal underscores the growing appeal of Manhattan’s west side, particularly for tech tenants. Last month, Facebook announced a monster lease at three Hudson Yards buildings, taking in excess of 1.5M SF across 30 floors. Meanwhile, the social networking company is reportedly still looking at leasing 700K SF at Vornado’s Farley Post Office redevelopment, per the Journal — where both Amazon and Apple have also weighed taking space.

Amazon’s office lease reopened the tax incentive debate that had dogged its original plans to build in New York City.

“Amazon is coming to New York, just as they always planned. Fortunately, we dodged a $3B bullet by not agreeing to their subsidy shakedown earlier this year,” Senate Deputy Leader Michael Gianaris, who had railed against Amazon’s Long Island City plans earlier this year, said in a statement Friday. “Now, we must enact reforms to our economic development programs to ensure no company can seek to take advantage of the public again.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, another vehement critic of HQ2, tweeted, "Won’t you look at that: Amazon is coming to NYC anyway - *without* requiring the public to finance shady deals, helipad handouts for Jeff Bezos, and corporate giveaways."

Amazon’s expansion is yet another example of the city’s growing tech sector.

Tech talent employment increased 44% in the city between 2011 and 2018, according to CBRE, and there are multiple companies seeking to establish themselves here. Google is building a 1.7M SF campus at St. John's Terminal in Hudson Square, and IBM is also said to be looking for roughly 500K SF of office space to pull all its separate city locations together.

At the 638K SF building at 410 10th Ave., SL Green was represented by Newmark Knight Frank's Brian Waterman, Scott Klau, Brent Ozarowski and Erik Harris. JLL’s Derek Trulson, Bill Peters and Josh Stuart represented Amazon.

First Republic Bank leased 212K SF at 410 10th this year, after SL Green announced it had bought a majority stake in the building last December. At the time, the company said it planned a redevelopment that would involve creating a new building entrance, new elevators and the “activation” of roof setback terraces. Amazon will reportedly start moving employees into the building in 2021.