A New York pioneering skyscraper of its era, the Flatiron Building is closing down for renovations, reports the Commercial Observer. Macmillan Publishers, the parent company to publishers like St. Martin’s Press and Henry Holt & Co., has been the sole tenant in the building for nearly half a century. Its latest lease renewal, signed in 2004, has come to an end and the company will relocate its headquarters from Midtown South to Downtown.
The 22-story, 285-foot steel-framed Flatiron Building is one of New York’s most popular buildings and was completed in 1902 on the triangular lot at the intersection of Fifth Avenue, Broadway and 23rd Street, after just one year in construction. Chicago’s Daniel Burnham designed it as a vertical Renaissance palazzo with Beaux-Arts style that resulted in a tripartite skyscraper resembling a Greek column with base, shaft and capital. The building is clad in limestone at the bottom that changes into terra-cotta as floors rise.
Designated a landmark in 1966, the asset was added to the National Historic Landmark Places in 1979 and became a National Historic Landmark in 1989.
While its facade has been restored in 1991 by Hurley & Farinella, the office tower’s interior no longer complies with New York’s building codes. Its co-owners, Sorgente Group and GFP Real Estate, will add fire sprinklers, a second staircase, as well as revamp the mechanical systems of the property. Most likely the bathrooms will be upgraded, too, as when the building opened it only had bathrooms for men. Management later alternated the floors, one for men and one for women, a pattern that is still present today.
Macmillan’s headquarters relocation was initially announced two years ago: in July 2017, the company signed a 20-year lease to occupy 261,000 square feet at 120 Broadway, another iconic office skyscraper. The 1.9 million-square-foot tower located in the Financial District will house the publisher’s employees on floors 22 through 26. In the deal, Silverstein Properties–the owner of 120 Broadway–was represented in-house by Roger Silverstein, Joseph Artusa and Camille McGratty. Macmillan was represented by Colliers International’s Vice Chairman Leon Manoff.
The 40-story 120 Broadway, also known as the Equitable Building, is another icon of classical style for more than a century. The asset was completed in 1915, designed by Ernest Graham, and by 1930 it was the largest office building in the world. Since 1980, the building is part of Silverstein Properties’ portfolio, and last year the owner embarked on a $50 million restoration and modernization process led by Beyer, Blinder, Belle.
BBB is redesigning the grand lobby and concourse, enabling pedestrian access through the corridor between Broadway and Nassau Streets. Additional upgrades include a new lighting system with hanging bronze chandelier fixtures, granite accent wall, retail storefronts, reception desk and signage. More so, the revitalization of 120 Broadway will introduce a new tenant-exclusive rooftop space with panoramic city views, which will include a 20,000-square-foot outdoor terrace designed by landscape architect MPFP with lush evergreens and all-weather seating, as well as an 8,000-square-foot indoor lounge. Completion is slated for October 2019.
“We are delighted to be moving to 120 Broadway,” announced then Andrew Weber, COO of Macmillan Publishers, in a press statement. “The move will be great for our people and our planned growth, and the architectural heritage of 120 Broadway means we will be moving from one of New York City’s great iconic buildings to another.”
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