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CBRE Tri-State CEO Mary Ann Tighe Goes Behind The Scenes Of New York City's Office Market

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CBRE's Tri-State Region CEO Mary Ann Tighe, center, with Amy Rose, left, and Andrea Himmel, right.

The New York City office market has been paralyzed by uncertainty for over a year, but the fog is beginning to lift, CBRE Tri-State CEO Mary Ann Tighe says.

Sublease space listings are starting to slow down, tours are happening and deals are getting signed, with some big-name companies currently on the hunt in the city.

“We put a bunch of space on the market for a precious customer of mine, and bingo, bango Microsoft shows up, and says they want all the space. You can’t have a better circumstance than that. So, I called them up, and I said, ‘I have some news for you,'” Tighe said on Bisnow’s podcast Friday. "The customer said, ‘We were kind of hoping that wasn’t the space that would go.’ And I'm like, 'OK, but it's Microsoft' … [But] they withdrew it and they kept it, and Microsoft, by the way, is still in the market looking for space.”

While the city's office rents haven't taken as big of a hit as some predicted, Tighe has noticed it is a whole new world of sizable tenant incentive packages. Pre-pandemic, she and her team had hoped to lease 3 World Trade Center up by the end of last year, but she now predicts the remaining space in the building will be taken by the end of this year, or early next — even as Uber and Casper attempt to sublease space.

“There’s a little drumbeat that says we’re in a moment of opportunity," she said. "[There are] many stories we recount to each other to cheer us on."

Even though hybrid work schedules are getting widely introduced, she said many companies will have requirements for workers to be in on certain days of the week.

“Predictions of the office's demise were premature and, frankly, ridiculous," Tighe said.