Chinese real estate investment firm Beijing Vantone Industrial Co., Ltd. formally signed its 20-year, 190,000-square-foot lease with the Port Authority at 1 World Trade Center yesterday. Numerous media outlets are reporting that the Port Authority has decided to drop the “Freedom Tower” moniker for the project, but GlobeSt.com quotes Port Authority spokesperson Steve Colman as confirming that “Freedom Tower” will still be retained somehow as the second half of 1 World Trade Center’s name.
Vantone will pay $80 per square foot to start, with escalations during years 7, 11, and 16 of the lease; the firm has an option to add an additional two contiguous floors to its lease by December 31 of this year. At the lease signing, the firm gave the Port Authority a $10 million letter of credit; total aggregate rent over the lifetime of the lease is estimated to be approximately $333 million.
Vantone will take part of the 64th floor and the entire 65th through 69th floors of the 102-story, David Childs-designed tower and create a “China Center” designed to be a cultural and educational portal for Chinese firms looking to do business in the U.S. and American firms interested in similar efforts in China; Vantone will spend approximately $90 million on its interiors (an admittedly quick Google search does not indicate the design team for this effort).
Vantone had looked previously had Larry Silverstein’s LEED Gold-certified 7 World Trade Center before turning its attention to the Freedom Tower. The Port Authority is currently negotiating two additional deals with the U.S. GSA and New York State Office of General Services that could top 1 million total square feet; 1 World Trade Center will ultimately offer 70 floors of office space totaling 2.6 million square feet.