Report: Joe Biden Picks Philadelphia's Centre Square For Presidential Campaign Headquarters
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One of the biggest names in the race to face Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election has set up shop in the heart of Philadelphia.
Joe Biden, who served as a senator from Delaware before his eight-year stint as Barack Obama's vice president, has leased a full floor at the Centre Square office complex in Center City, the Philadelphia Business Journal reports and Savills confirms. The lease, brokered on Biden's side by the Savills team of Ken Biberaj, Jay Joyce and Michael Styer, is for around 25K SF.
Nightingale Properties purchased Centre Square in 2017, the largest one-property transaction by square footage in Philadelphia's history. Its sale price of $328M now sits in third place all-time, behind Korea Investment Management Co.'s 2016 acquisition of the IRS office building at the former 30th Street Station post office and Silverstein Properties' $451M purchase of 1735 Market St. earlier this year.
The two buildings that form Centre Square sit on top of the Market-Frankford Line's 15th Street Station, one of the most heavily trafficked in SEPTA's subway system. For many in the city, the development is identified by the Clothespin sculpture by Claes Oldenburg in front and little else — but not for long.
Nightingale, which brought on Wafra Capital Partners as a joint venture partner in 2018, announced early this month a $12M improvement plan for the complex's ground floor, subway concourse and street level, including 19K SF of new retail that will be split up into three units, PBJ reports. A completion date has not been publicly set, leaving open the question of whether Biden's campaign will be based above a construction site for the length of its run.
Biden hails from Scranton in Northeastern Pennsylvania, and his wife, Jill, grew up in the Philly suburb of Willow Grove. He plans to have about 50 staff members in the central office, with the potential to add more down the road, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
UPDATE, MAY 23, 1:15 P.M. ET: This article has been updated to reflect Ken Biberaj's involvement and Savills' confirmation.