The high-profile architecture firm, Ramus Ella Architects, or REX, which was formerly the New York division of the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), recently signed a lease for 8,568 s/f of office space at 160 Varick Street, also known as 10 Hudson Square, one block south of their old office.
Michelle Stone, managing director at Sinvin Realty, represented the tenant for the transaction; Peter Fontennata of Trinity Real Estate represented the landlords, who are the Rector, Church Wardens and Vestrymen of Trinity Church.
Rem Koolhaas and Joshua Prince-Ramus, who were co-owners and partners in OMA New York, announced in May that they are changing their business relationship to allow Mr. Prince-Ramus and his whole New York team to operate independently. Prince-Ramus partnered with Erez Ella, who had worked with OMA since 1999, to establish the new firm.
REX and its staff have moved in to their new offices on the 10th floor of this prestigious building in Hudson Square. The corner space with 12-foot ceilings faces southwest and has great sunset views. The landlord provided the HVAC unit as well as a cash contribution to the tenant’s build-out. “It is rare to get a cash contribution from a landlord in most loft buildings,” says Ms. Stone. “Trinity is just about the only landlord that offers this in the downtown loft areas.”
“Our transaction was just one of six that Michelle Stone closed for architects in the previous 12 months,” said Mr. Prince-Ramus. “Yet, she made us feel like we were her only clients with her incredible service, responsiveness, financial and negotiating advice. She is a pleasure to work with and helped the entire process go smoothly. I’d recommend Sinvin to anyone.”
The exact terms of the seven-year lease remain undisclosed, but the landlord had been asking $32 per square foot. Other tenants in the building include the Princeton Review, which renewed its lease for another 10 years in 2004, and New York public radio station WNYC, which will move from its current space in the Municipal Building to its much larger space at 160 Varick Street in 2007.
The partnership between Rem Koolhaas and Joshua Prince-Ramus is best known for producing the Seattle Central Library, completed in May 2004, the Guggenheim-Hermitage Museum in Las Vegas, completed in October 2001, and Prada’s flagship store in SoHo, also completed in 2001. The following projects, previously run by OMA New York, will be run by REX: the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre at the Dallas Center for the performing Arts in Dallas, TX; the Annenberg Center for Information Science and Technology at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, CA; and Museum Plaza in Louisville, KY.