Condé Nast W.T.C. move begins November

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One World Trade Center. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
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Condé Nast is beginning the rollout of its upcoming move to 1 World Trade Center, the soaring skyscraper where it has agreed to live for at least the next 25 years.

In one of the first significant internal communications about the move since Condé Nast signed a lease in May 2011, employees of the magazine publisher were informed today that the relocation from their long-time offices at 4 Times Square will begin in November, Capital has learned.

"I am pleased to share that the interior construction of our new space at 1WTC is well underway," chief executive Chuck Townsend wrote in a memo obtained by Capital. "This relocation represents a historic moment for our company and symbolizes the enormous transformation we have undergone in the past few years. ... As the anchor tenant in one of the world’s most anticipated architectural sites, we have an unprecedented opportunity to take part in shaping the future of New York City."

Condé Nast's move to 1 World Trade Center, a joint development between the Port Authority and The Durst Organization, has a transformative potential for Lower Manhattan, which has slowly but steadily been rebuilding its economy since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Condé Nast's glamorous employees are expected to bring a new cachet to the area around the new World Trade Center, raising the bar for local food, retail and hospitality businesses.

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The company, publisher of such venerable titles as Vogue, The New Yorker and Vanity Fair, is also seen as the centerpiece of what appears to be a burgeoning media boom in Lower Manhattan.

As Capital reported last week, 15 media companies committed to relocating to the area from 2011 through the first six months of last year, bringing the total number of media tenants to around 80, according to the Alliance for Downtown New York. News and publishing outlets in the vicinity include American Media Inc., the Daily News, Newsweek, The Village Voice and Fast Company. Time Inc. is said to be weighing a move to Lower Manhattan as well.

Condé Nast will be the first major corporate tenant to set up shop inside 1 World Trade Center, a protracted construction project the represents the rebirth of Lower Manhattan and the resilience of a post-9/11 New York.

At 1,776 feet and 104 floors—24 of which will be occupied by Condé Nast—the building is America's tallest, though roughly 1.4 million square feet remains unleased. Condé Nast's 25-year deal was packed with tax incentives and worth a reported $2 billion.

Townsend's memo touted "the most innovative elements of energy and environmental design" as well as "advanced office technology." He added that "many of our technology and production colleagues," including employees of Condé Nast Entertainment, will move from 1166 Avenue of the Americas to three redesigned floors at 222 Broadway, adjacent to 1 World Trade Center.

The company's 1.2 million square feet of office space on floors 20 through 44 of 1 World Trade include "amenity floors" on 34 and 35 "connected by an extraordinary, interior spiral staircase," according to Townsend's memo. "These floors will house our visitors reception, conference center, library, auditorium, art gallery, private dining, cafeteria and after-hours café.."

Townsend said employees will continue to receive updates over the coming months.

We'll have more about Conde's move in an upcoming feature from the next issue of Capital's monthly print magazine, which comes out Feb. 24.

You can read Townsend's full memo below:

Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased to share that the interior construction of our new space at 1WTC is well underway. We prepare to move downtown as a new Condé Nast well positioned for the next century of creating the world’s greatest content for the world’s most influential audiences. This relocation represents a historic moment for our company and symbolizes the enormous transformation we have undergone in the past few years.

Starting this November, we will begin the first phase of our move to our new headquarters. In addition to being a LEED Gold-certified building incorporating the most innovative elements of energy and environmental design, 1WTC will also integrate advanced office technology. In order to ensure that our relocation and operations transition seamlessly, this June, many of our technology and production colleagues in IS&T and Condé Nast Entertainment will move from 1166 Avenue of the Americas to three redesigned floors at 222 Broadway. This new tech campus, adjacent to 1WTC, will provide a superior setting for creativity, collaboration and innovation.

At 1WTC, we will occupy 1.2 million square feet on floors 20 through 44. Our corporate departments will largely occupy the first five floors as well as the top three floors, and our brands will predominantly be on floors 25 through 33 and 36 through 41. We have two remarkable amenity floors on 34 and 35 connected by an extraordinary interior spiral staircase. These floors will house our visitors reception, conference center, library, auditorium, art gallery, private dining, cafeteria and after-hours café.

In the coming months, you will begin to receive more detailed information about the move and our new neighborhood. This will include important facts regarding transportation, dining, retail and surrounding points of interest such as the 9/11 Memorial Museum.

As the build-out of the floors progresses, photos and updates will be posted on Connect so all employees can stay current on this exciting journey.

1WTC is an inspired setting and an ideal home for Condé Nast. As the anchor tenant in one of the world’s most anticipated architectural sites, we have an unprecedented opportunity to take part in shaping the future of New York City—and perhaps most importantly—in creating a world-class environment that could be conceived “Only At Condé Nast.”