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BankAmerica signs on at 1 World Trade.

In a major boost for the World Trade Center and New York, The BankAmerica Corporation announced it will consolidate employees from 10 Manhattan locations into eight floors at One World Trade Center.

The nation's second largest bank holding company signed a 15-year lease for 300,000 square feet of space with expansion options. The move will retain 1,700 employees in New York State.

Since the San Francisco-based institution was considering relocating these employees outside the city and possibly the state, BankAmerica will move in with a city and state incentive package that is valued at roughly $15 million and includes substantial free rent, sales tax exemptions, a grant for the purchase of equipment and other bonuses.

There was concern that a Feb. 26 terrorist explosion in the Twin Towers would lead tenants to move out and discourage tenants in negotiations from signing deals. BankAmerica was one of those negotiating tenants, and some say the incentives may have been beefed up because the would-be tenant was reluctant.

Larry Lipson of Shea & Gould, who with Florence Goffman, said he could not comment on specific details of the negotiation, but he indicated: "There was a real concern obviously at that point that the towers would not be reopened in time ... and if BankAmerica wanted to put their people in a high-profile building that failed the ultimate security test,"

But, he said, the bank and its consultants ascertained that the building would be safe. Charlie Maikish of the Port Authority, he said, should be commended for not only getting the building back in operation but in maintaining negotiations.

Lipson said this was an especially complex deal because of the many governmental entities that were involved and the incentive package that had to be finely tuned.

"The mechanics of the incentives, in how they would be given, at the last minute changed," Lipson said.

Therese Fitzgerald
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Title Annotation:leases office space at One World Trade Center, New York, New York
Author:Fitzgerald, Therese
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Apr 28, 1993
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