Historic Argonaut Building Brings Home LEED Gold to West 57th Street

Add Midtown’s Argonaut Building – which dates from 1909 – to the list as New York City commercial office buildings continue to rack up LEED certification from USGBC.

Monaco-based developer M1 Real Estate has formally earned LEED for Core and Shell Gold certification for the historic Argonaut Building at 224 West 57th Street in Midtown, just south of Columbus Circle on the eastern corner of Broadway. We’ve followed the project relatively closely here at gbNYC; the historic tower was landmarked by the city back in 2000 and was initially built in 1909 as the headquarters for General Motors. M1 agreed to a 99-year leasehold on the 10-story building back in August of 2008, which was the developer’s first acquisition in North America and an important addition to its extensive holdings in London, Paris, and Frankfurt.

M1′s pursuit of LEED Gold was in connection with $45 million in renovations designed by Gensler, with project team assistance from YRG Sustainability. After a 4700-square-foot deal that the landlord signed in August 2009 with TD Bank, approximately 15,000 square feet of retail space continues to remain across the Argonaut Building’s lower three floors; 135,000 square feet of Class A office space above is still available, and M1 is encouraging all prospective tenants to pursue LEED for Commercial Interiors certification for their respective build-outs.

As you will recall, the neo-Gothic, terra cotta Argonaut Building was named for GM’s real estate holding company and was also the home to Hearst prior to that company’s move one block west to its LEED Gold-certified headquarters on Eighth Avenue.

The certification should vault New York City past Washington, D.C. into second place behind Chicago for total number of LEED-certified buildings among American cities.

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