Real estate

Pfizer heads to the Hudson, signs 20-year lease at posh new NYC headquarters

It’s official. Pfizer is packing up its retro office digs and moving into a massive piece of real estate near the Hudson River that’s more suited to the industry behemoth.

The company has signed a 20-year lease at The Spiral, a towering 1,005-foot-tall office tower being constructed in the Hudson Yards district of Manhattan’s Midtown West. Pfizer will take up 15 floors of the building’s 65 stories, spanning a city block.

Designed by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, the glass building’s hallmark will be its upward-climbing ring of terraces that encircle the structure like a spiral staircase. The glitzy building will be wrapped in gardens and green spaces, creating a striking contrast to New York’s glass, concrete, and steel skyline.

A $3.2 billion project, the Tishman Speyer building will rise west of 10th Avenue at 509 W. 34th St.

Pfizer’s move, which is expected in 2022, will take employees out of a less-than-glamorous building at 235 East 42nd Street. The previous headquarters has been the company’s home since 1961. Although rather dated in style, the building was expansive, with Pfizer occupying 33 stories and 1 million square-feet of space.

It was reported last summer that Pfizer would need 800,000 square-feet of space at its new location at The Spiral, but the company did not report details of its lease other than the number of floors it would occupy. Pfizer has not yet responded to our inquiry for details.

It’s possible that Pfizer will need less actual square-footage than its previous location, considering the now-dominant style of wide open floor plans and “collaborative” spaces in office design. It’s a trend being adopted by companies in every industry, and life science is not exception. GSK, Bristol-Myers, AstraZeneca, Novartis, Roche, and others have all made moves into buildings with similar spaces.

Image: The Spiral. TISHMAN SPEYER

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Research Scientist - Immunology
Recursion Pharmaceuticals Salt Lake City, UT
Director of Operations
Atlas Venture Cambridge, MA

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