• Eyeing sister city for ‘anywhere from 40 to 60 new jobs’ • Federal Reserve chair signals September interest rate hike
Google is planning to spend $2.1bn (£1.6bn) to lease a 35-story tower in Manhattan’s most prominent office district, developers said on Saturday, signalling the search giant is now further entrenched in the competitive financial district.
New York will be home to dozens of Google offshoots in coming years. The company already has launched a Google Fiber service in Long Island City, Queens, near the company’s new US headquarters, and has enlisted an IT company to help it set up shop at Rockefeller Center.
While with a number of large tech firms, Google had been seen as unusual in not building its own space in New York City, the company hired architect, Will Allen, for the latest project.
Google Open Studios installation at Google’s New York headquarters. Photograph: @WillAllen/AP
Google is moving into 111 Eighth Avenue, which is currently owned by Hines, a real estate services company that is redeveloping the property for a new tenant, according to a building official and a project developer, who requested anonymity because the sale is still private.
It is one of the top commercial office locations in Manhattan. The site has about half a million square feet in almost 15 buildings, according to Hines.
It is being sold by owners Angelo Gordon & Co. and Mitsui Fudosan Co., in connection with recent investors seeking to sell a small stake in the property. The properties total about 12 million square feet of space, the firms said.
“The tower will be the most visible component of our development that will bring quality, well-located office space to New York,” said Caitlin Peters, a spokeswoman for Hines. “The project is currently in advanced negotiation with a new tenant.”
She said a tenant deal could be confirmed by the end of the year.
The developers called Google a “key anchor” to anchor the project, which is set to total about 1.9 million square feet.
The developer said the Google tenancy is expected to include about 40 to 60 jobs.
Job growth in New York City, particularly in the financial district, has been the fastest among all US urban areas over the past six years, according to a recent report from the New York City Economic Development Corporation.
Google said it is always searching for new office space.
“At Google, our new building will serve our employees wherever they work in New York – in Midtown, Long Island City, the Hudson Yards and anywhere else they choose to work,” the company said in a statement.
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Google is known for public events and art displays designed to enhance its brand and employee morale.
On Friday, the company opened up the roof of its New York headquarters to the public for the first time. The company also recently showed off a windowless, moon-like structure known as the “blink house” that will become a temporary work space for about 100 developers.
The New York headquarters is about a mile north of New York City’s most famous office building, Rockefeller Center. It sits between some of the most sought-after investment properties in the nation.