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Thread: Associated Press moving

  1. #1

    Default Associated Press moving
    AP to Move From New York Headquarters
    Associated Press to Move From New York Headquarters at 50 Rockefeller Plaza

    The Associated Press

    NEW YORK Jan. 2 —
    The Associated Press plans to move its world headquarters next year from 50 Rockefeller Plaza, home to the news cooperative for 65 years, to another Manhattan location.

    The decision was driven by AP's desire to modernize and expand, and by a steep rent increase the news cooperative would have faced in its current home, said David Tomlin, assistant to AP President and CEO Louis D. Boccardi.

    "Rockefeller Center has been our home for some 65 years," Boccardi said in an e-mail to AP headquarters' staff on Thursday. "It is a well-known address. But as you know firsthand, it has been a challenging environment in which to modernize, reorganize and expand."

    The cooperative reviewed a number of sites and is considering finalists, Tomlin said. He said the AP would remain in Manhattan.

    The AP, the world's oldest and largest newsgathering organization, was a charter tenant of Rockefeller Center, a landmark 10-building complex in midtown Manhattan. The news agency now occupies more than five floors of 50 Rockefeller Plaza, an art deco structure named The Associated Press Building but known to generations of AP employees simply as "50 Rock."

    The agency has 850 employees in the building, more than twice the number of employees as when AP arrived in 1938. The AP's staff numbers roughly 3,700 worldwide.

    Does this bear any significance, or have any real impact on Manhattan?

    (Edited by amigo32 at 12:25 am on Jan. 3, 2003)

  2. #2

    Default Associated Press moving


    January 3, 2003
    Company Names on Buildings Mean Cachet and Cash

    The story of New York is written in the ever-changing names of its skyscrapers.

    The Pan Am Building was renamed the MetLife Building after the airline died in the 1990's. The AT&T Building on Madison Avenue became the Sony Building in the same decade, after Ma Bell retreated to the New Jersey suburbs.

    In the latest chapter, The Associated Press is close to a deal to move out of its headquarters in a Rockefeller Center building that has borne its name since it opened in 1938. The A.P., the international news agency, will in all likelihood move to a more anonymous location somewhere in Midtown as its name is erased from the face of 50 Rockefeller Plaza.

    It is even considering 450 West 33rd Street, at 10th Avenue, the building occupied by The Daily News, another victim of the name game. In the 1990's, the tabloid left the 42nd Street skyscraper that was built as its headquarters in 1930.

    "There's no denying that Rockefeller Center is one of the most extraordinary locations on the planet," said David H. Tomlin, assistant to the president of The A.P. "To be here with our name on these historic buildings has meant a lot to us. But things change."

    One thing that is changing is the rent. A.P.'s lease at 50 Rockefeller Plaza expires in September 2004, and according to real estate executives the company's base rent is scheduled to jump to more than $60 a square foot from slightly more than $30, an increase of more than $4.6 million a year. So A.P. hired Cushman & Wakefield, a real estate company, and started looking elsewhere.

    Mr. Tomlin said the news business, too, had changed. A different building with larger floors would better accommodate the company's Internet, broadcast and news-gathering operations, which are now spread across four buildings.

    The A.P.'s pending move was first reported by The Daily News on Wednesday.

    Tishman Speyer, the company that heads the group that owns Rockefeller Center, sees the departure of A.P. as an opportunity to hammer a new corporate name into the limestone building and demand a higher rent from executives who want the cachet of an address in one of the great urban complexes of the 20th century.

    Much can be learned about New York and American capitalism by the succession of companies that have had their names emblazoned across Manhattan skyscrapers.

    "Judge the building by the company it keeps," said Jonathan L. Mechanic, who heads the real estate department at the law firm of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson. "The name changes at major buildings in New York reflect the changing fortunes of global industries."

    The RCA Building at 30 Rockefeller Plaza was renamed the G.E. Building after General Electric took over RCA, the parent company of NBC. Like Pan Am, Eastern Airlines, before it went out of business, had its name atop 10 Rockefeller Plaza.

    The Manufacturers Hanover building at 600 Fifth Avenue became the Chase Manhattan building when the banks merged. But the tower, now occupied by Fiduciary Trust, is nameless today.

    The Gothic tower now known as the Bryant Park, a designer hotel at 40 West 40th Street, has a history that illustrates New York's shift away from industrial headquarters. Designed by Raymond Hood, who was also the architect of the Daily News building, it was originally named the American Radiator Building, and had a gold crown lighted to simulate a hot radiator in a tribute to the automobile age. It took on a somewhat different cast when it was renamed the American Standard Building, after the plumbing fixture manufacturer.

    Some skyscrapers have endured time's passage. With its oversize silver hood ornaments and eagle-head gargoyles, the 77-story Chrysler Building on East 42nd Street remains a legendary New York skyscraper even as the automobile company's glory days fade from memory.

    The A.P. has looked at several Midtown office buildings. If it joins The Daily News on 10th Avenue, it will occupy the top floors once held by DoubleClick, an ailing Internet advertising firm, and will pay rent of $31 a square foot.

    But for many corporations, their name on a high-profile building translates into prestige and a marketing opportunity. For landlords, it translates into cash.

    Early last year, Tishman Speyer replaced the glowing but anonymous "666" numbers atop the 41-story tower at 666 Fifth Avenue with the Citigroup corporate logo. At the time, Robert J. Speyer, a senior managing director at Tishman Speyer, said it was a signal that "corporations are not going to walk away from the city."

    It is also lucrative. Citigroup is paying a seven-figure rent for the signs.

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