MLB Offices Moving to Rockefeller Center

Major League Baseball will take 400,000 square feet at the former Time & Life Building in Midtown Manhattan.

By Keith Loria, Contributing Editor

1271 Avenue of the Americas, New York City
1271 Avenue of the Americas, New York City

New YorkMajor League Baseball has completed a 400,000-square-foot lease at 1271 Avenue of the Americas, a 48-story office tower in New York City, part of the new $600 million modern expansion of Rockefeller Center.

For the deal, MLB was represented by a CBRE team including Scott Gottlieb, Ken Meyerson, Chris Corrinet, Brendan Herlihy and Daniel Wilpon. Building ownership was represented by a CBRE team including Mary Ann Tighe, Howard Fiddle, John Maher, Dave Caperna, Evan Haskell and Sarah Pontius, in coordination with an in-house Rockefeller Group leasing team led by Ed Guiltinan and Jennifer Stein.

“We are very pleased to welcome Major League Baseball to Rockefeller Center,” Dan Rashin, Rockefeller Group co-president & CEO, said in a prepared release. “Major League Baseball is world renowned, representing the best-of-the-best in global sports, media, entertainment, and technology services. And 1271 is a dynamic building undergoing a significant transformation for the future—the two of them together make a world-class combination.”

MLB will take six floors of office space in the 2.1 million-square-foot building, which is located on the west side of Sixth Avenue between 50th and 51st Streets in the center of midtown.

As part of the deal, MLB will be able to use the building’s street-level plaza for public events, as well as have exclusive use of the eighth-floor outdoor terrace, which overlooks Sixth Avenue with expansive views of Central Park to the north and Lower Manhattan to the south.

“We are excited about the opportunity to create a singular headquarters environment that can best accommodate the workplace needs of our employees as we continue to build and enhance our organization for the future,” said Robert Manfred, Jr., MLB commissioner. “Additionally, the building’s central location, access to transportation and existing amenities made this the right move for MLB.”

The plan is for MLB and MLB Advanced Media LP to consolidate employees from separate locations in midtown and downtown, and move into the space in 2019.

The office space was previously occupied by Time Inc., which had been the building’s anchor tenant for more than five decades before the publisher’s relocation in 2015.

Last year, the Rockefeller Group began a $600 million redevelopment of the building, designed by the architectural firm Pei Cobb Freed & Partners. Upgrades and renovations included replacement of the building’s glass curtain wall, allowing approximately 60 percent more light into the interior space and enhancing the views; restoration of the building’s landmarked lobby, including its Copacabana-inspired floors; a stainless-steel-covered elevator core, marble walls and artworks by Josef Albers and Fritz Glarner.

In-building amenities include well-known and established restaurants including Capital Grille, Ted’s Montana Grill and Le Pain Quotidien, as well as direct access to the B, D, F and M subway lines and the shops at Rockefeller Center.

The building is located within walking distance of Grand Central Station, Penn Station, the Port Authority Bus Terminal and more than a dozen subway lines. The neighborhood’s amenities, within a five-block radius, include 10 parks, 10 museums, 65 hotels, 115 theaters and more than 400 restaurants and 2,000 retail stores.

Image courtesy of Yardi Matrix