Named for the original Beaux-Arts masterpiece that once stood in the current footprint of Madison Square Garden, the Penn Station submarket is now one of Manhattan’s most familiar – if least loved – districts. But those feelings are misunderstood: the modern Penn Station submarket is perhaps New York City’s most convenient office locations and offers a broad range of amenities just steps away from the Northeast rail corridor and easy access to both JFK and Newark International Airports. And with plans in full swing to move part of the current, dreary Penn Station into the Farley Post Office across the street as Moynihan Station, at least part of the damage will – hopefully – be undone.
Anchored by Vornado Realty Trust’s One Penn Plaza – the largest building in the to-this-day controversial Penn Plaza complex of towers, hotels, and entertainment venues, which includes Madison Square Garden across the street – the Penn Station submarket essentially dates from the 1963 destruction of the old Penn Station, which the Penn Plaza complex replaced. With its proximity to both the Garment District to the north and Chelsea to the south, the Penn Plaza complex – and the Penn Station submarket itself – remains a popular choice for creative and design firms, particularly because of its consistently affordable office rents.
Overall current inventory in the Penn Station submarket is approximately 10 million square feet. As of the first quarter 2012, the vacancy rate was just over 13.5 percent. Average asking rents are approximately $52 per square foot; Class A asking rents are just shy of $70 per square foot.