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Condé Nast, Moody's Looking For The Exit At One World Trade Center

One World Trade Center

The tallest building in the U.S. is dealing with some possible defections after a tough, years-long lease-up process.

Media giant Condé Nast is in talks to break its 25-year lease across 21 floors at One World Trade Center, Variety reported. The 1,776-foot skyscraper is co-owned by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the Durst Organization, which also manages it. Financial service company Moody’s is looking for a subletter for its 75K SF lease on the 56th and 57th floors, The Real Deal reported

The move by Condé Nast comes after the company was forced to lay off 6,000 employees globally amid the economic downturn. The company is looking to shed office space and recently asked some employees to prepare to work from home in a more permanent way. 

“Advance Publications is in discussions about bringing the lease at 1 World Trade Center into line with current market conditions and its ongoing needs at this location,” a spokesperson for the company told Variety. 

Condé Nast is also considering buying out its lease at a discount of the overall lease amount, Variety reported. 

Moody's told The Real Deal it was looking to consolidate its staff into one location at its headquarters across the street, at Silverstein Properties' 7 World Trade Center. Cushman & Wakefield’s Rob Lowe will lead the marketing effort to find a sublease tenant, TRD reports. 

The Durst Organization declined to comment. 

The move comes while the future of New York City office real estate — on a leasing tear before the coronavirus pandemic hit — is uncertain. 

In February, MDC Partners inked a new 200K SF lease at the supertall, propelling the building’s occupancy at the time to 93%. The marketing company moved from its previous location in Midtown into the 65th and 69th floors of One World Trade, at around $69 per SF, a price lower than what it paid at its previous location, The New York Post reported at the time. 

Last quarter, office leasing was at the lowest it has been since 2009 and investors say they are seeing huge discounts on office buildings. Office landlords have become comfortable with the idea of more flexible lease terms as many tenants did not return to the office when the reopening began.

Contact Kelsey Neubauer at kelsey.neubauer@bisnow.com.