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In Midtown, Country’s Largest LEED-EB Building Lands Major New Tenant

1211 Avenue of Americas

Back in mid-2009, Beacon Capital’s 1211 Avenue of the Americas (on Sixth Avenue between West 47th and 48th Streets) earned LEED-EB Silver certification from USGBC. At 45-stories and two million square feet, the tower is the largest commercial office building that has been certified to date under the LEED for Existing Buildings rating system (either Version 2.0 or Operations and Maintenance). In February, Beacon signed Axis Re, a division of Axis Capital, a Bermuda-based reinsurance company, to a 121,000-square-foot lease on the building’s 24th through 26th floors. Asking rents for the space were approximately $65 per square foot (slightly above overall Midtown asking rents, which were $57.97 per square foot in February, up from $55.82 in January). Overall Manhattan asking rents in February were $47.61 per square foot, up from $48.31 in January.

Specific green features that Beacon Capital incorporated into its retrofit effort include efficient and reduced-content mercury lighting, low-flow plumbing fixtures, and new glazing that boosts the amount of daylight that reaches the tower’s interiors. 1211 Avenue of the Americas earned BOMA’s “Best Operating Office Building” award in 2008 for buildings larger than one million square feet; current tenants include the New York Post, Fox News Channel, and the Fox Business Network.

The building was originally developed by the Rockefeller Group as headquarters for the Celanese Corporation in 1973; 1211 Avenue of the Americas is one of the three “XYZ” towers that line the western side of Sixth Avenue (the Y and Z towers are the McGraw-Hill Building at 1221 and the Exxon Building at 1251). Rockefeller sold its interest in 1211 in 1980; the building’s original architects were Harrison & Abramowitz & Harris.

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