New office space will bring the chic back to the Lower East Side

By Steve Cuozzo

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A quart of sour pickles on Grand Street costs just $8. But a single square foot of newly minted, amenities-rich office space on Delancey Street will set you back a C-note. Hello, the new Lower East Side.

The 350,000 square feet of offices at fast-track development complex Essex Crossing come in the form of two, 175,000-square-foot contiguous chunks at 145 and 155 Delancey St. — mixed-use towers of 14 and 26 stories respectively that are also known as 202 Broome and 180 Broome St. on their apartment-entrance sides.

The office availabilities, on the second through fifth floors at each address, are coming to market via Cushman & Wakefield just as 1.9-million-square-foot Essex Crossing hits the fast lane. Seven of nine planned buildings on six acres are open or rising. The full complex is to be finished in 2024.

Although project officials first told us they expected $100 a square foot, the “official” ask is $99 a square foot, said Josh Kuriloff, leader of a Cushman & Wakefield leasing team that includes Matthias Li, Andrew Braver and Joseph Cirone. (Historic Lower East Side pricing would surely be $99.99).

Although it might sound astronomical on a block previously known for discount baby clothes and empty lots, it’s 30 percent less than office rents in the Meatpacking District, Kuriloff said.
Essex Crossing’s apartments and retail spaces have been snatched up rapidly.

Now, joint-venture developer Delancey Street Associates is banking on office tenants to pay never-before-seen rents in the neighborhood — where it’s hard to find offices at any price.