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Direct office leases soar at end of '91.

Office space available for direct lease rose to an all-time high of 22.5 million square feet in Midtown North in the fourth quarter of 1991, according to The Williams Report, released by Williams Real Estate Co. Inc.

The current availability rate of 16.46 percent represents 29.2 million square feet of space, of which 14.68 percent is vacant. Availabilities reached the highest total ever at midyear - 29.3 million square feet or 16.53 percent of all space.

Direct lease availabilities experienced a sharp spurt in the fourth quarter, and climbed a total of 7.7 percent during 1991. In contrast, space available for sublease now represents its lowest market share in two years, 22.9 percent of total availabilities. Sublease availabilities, in fact, declined by 347,000 square feet in the fourth quarter, according to Andrew H. Roos, executive vice president of Williams.

In post-1968 buildings, 20.10 percent was available for lease, in comparison to 14.25 percent in the 1946-68 sector and 13.10 percent in the pre-war sector.

The average asking rental dropped to $37.41 per square foot in Midtown North, representing a drop of 6.7 percent during the year. Buildings constructed in 1946-68 experienced the steepest drop, 9.1 percent, to $35.47 per square foot. In post-1968 buildings, asking rentals declined 6 percent during 1991 to $40.92 per square foot. In pre-war buildings, asking rentals fell 5.7 percent to $30.58 per square foot, said Roos.

The largest leases signed during 1991 were SONY Corporation for 670,000 square feet at 550 Madison Avenue; law firm LeBoeuf Lamb Leiby & Macrae for 223,597 square feet and Katz Communications for 184,300 square feet, both at 125 West 55th Street; Neuberger & Berman for 159,275 square feet at 605 Third Avenue; Credit Suisse for 106,750 square feet at 12 East 49th Street; and Sprint for 88,000 square feet at 380 Madison Avenue. Only the Sprint lease occurred in the final quarter.
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Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Feb 19, 1992
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