Many associate the Times Square/West Side district of Midtown Manhattan with tourism, entertainment, flashing billboards and the New Year’s Eve ball drop, but the busy area at the junction of Broadway and Seventh Avenue is also a major commercial real estate intersection. Following the 1980s commercial boom on the West Side of Midtown, the stretch between West 42nd and West 47th streets became home to various large financial services and media firms, the likes of The New York Times Company and Morgan Stanley.
Nowadays, Times Square is one of the busiest pedestrian areas in the world, as well as one of the most popular entertainment destinations around. Roughly 50 million visitors per year visit the home of the Broadway Theater District, drawn in by the large variety of entertainment and dining options. Yet the district is also home to now-iconic office landmarks like the New York Times Building (now One Times Square), the Paramount Building at 1501 Broadway, One Astor Plaza at 1515 Broadway, and AXA Center at 787 Seventh Avenue. The Times Square redevelopment plan adopted in the 1970s allowed the construction of large office towers in the area, as long as they included new theaters on site.
Various high-profile tenants have opted to conduct their businesses in the Times Square/West Side area of Midtown. The excellent location served by a variety of public transportation options, coupled with the close proximity to restaurants, theatres and hotels make this area highly desirable for large corporations on the hunt for quality Midtown Manhattan office space.
Major companies with offices in Times Square/West Side include Viacom at One Astor Plaza, Barclays Capital at 745 Seventh Avenue, BMO Capital Markets, Nasdaq and Bank of Montreal at 151 West 42nd Street, and Morgan Stanley at 1585 Broadway. Ernst & Young, Bain & Company, Conde Nast, Thomson Reuters and The New York Times complete the list of major tenants calling the Times Square district home.
Leasing office space in Times Square might not be quite as pricey as it is in the notoriously-expensive Plaza District, but it still comes at a premium compared to other markets. At the close of Q1 2019, average asking rents for Times Square office space were $70 per square foot, according to CBRE. The district saw 628,000 square feet of office leasing activity during the quarter, with two notable deals closed by Bank of Montreal joining the tenant roster at 151 West 42nd Street and Young & Rubicon renewing its lease at 3 Columbus Circle. The Times Square/West Side district features 43 office buildings and an inventory of nearly 32 million square feet, occupied largely by FIRE (financial services, insurance and real estate) and media/publishing tenants.
Efficient transportation options in the Times Square/West Side district, one of the most trafficked areas in the world, are crucial. Luckily, visitors and workers flocking to this area have a large variety of public transportation options to choose from, including the A, C and E trains running beneath Eighth Avenue, the N, Q, R, Q, 1, 2, 3 and 7 trains, the 42nd Street Shuttle, and the nearby Sixth Avenue lines. Not too far from Times Square are Grand Central Terminal and the Metro North Railroad, as well as the Port Authority Bus terminal, the largest transportation facility of any kind in the U.S.