A couple of months ago, we noted the $50 million Kushner-CIM Group joint venture acquistion of 200 Lafayette Street and the JV’s plans for a $20 million, LEED-certified upgrade for the 1900s-era, 7-story property that once served as a manufacturing facility.
Now, the JV has a tenant for all 130,000 square feet of the tower’s renovated office space: earlier this week, J.C. Penney signed a lease to
move its corporate headquarters expand its operations from Dallas – where it’s been based since 1987 – closer to New York City’s fashion industry. It’s a homecoming of sorts for the company – which has been led since last June by CEO and former Apple exec Ron Johnson – until then, JCPenney had been located at 1301 Sixth Avenue, and in New York City since 1914.
The company hopes that 200 Lafayette’s highly desirable SoHo location will assist in attracting and retaining employees and, presumably, with its rebranding (it’s now calling itself “jcpenney.”) Those same reasons, of course, continue to drive Midtown South’s cachet across a broad range of tenants, including technology companies.
According to the New York Post, which broke the story, the deal took just 45 days to paper and asking rents were $68 per square foot. Other companies that considered 200 Lafayette were Facebook, Armani, and Droga5, a growing ad agency with 23,000 square feet at nearby 400 Lafayette Street. Details about the status of the building’s 16,500 square feet of retail space and a timeframe for JCPenney’s move haven’t been released.