Oh, to Be Douglas Durst Now That Summer’s Here

The Bank of America Tower is mushrooming from the ground on Sixth Avenue and is nearly complete, just 11 months from opening.

So how will the developer Douglas Durst spend the final few months before it’s finished? He’ll be busy asking for some of the highest rents in Manhattan commercial history for the tower’s remaining two floors.

His request comes on the heels of another successful lease, this time with the hedge fund HBK Investments agreeing to a 10-year-deal for 36,252 square feet on the 40th floor, said a source familiar with the deal. The lease is the fourth one signed this year at One Bryant Park.

With that floor out of the way, the 54-story, 2.1 million–square-foot skyscraper has two spaces available for rent before it’s fully occupied—floors 37 and 47 (for those scoring at home, Bank of America originally controlled the 37th floor but recently gave it back to Mr. Durst).

Asking rents for each floor will start at $185 per square foot annually, a source said, which are among the highest asking rents in any American office building ever. Average asking rent in Class A office space in midtown is $70 per square foot, according to the brokerage Cushman & Wakefield.

In this market flooded with money, no building has been able to exploit it better than One Bryant. Although trophies like the GM Building at 767 Fifth Avenue or the Seagram Building on Park Avenue charge comparably astronomical rents for available spaces, it’ll take years before all the leases in both towers are able to turn over.

The Bank of America Tower, on the other hand, was born straight into this plush era and has charged triple-digit rents from the get-go. Bank of America took 1.6 million square feet, leaving more than 500,000 square feet for rent.

This year, more than 100,000 square feet of leases were signed to the hedge fund Marathon Asset Management and the fashion designer Elie Tahari. Taking rents are all more than $115 per foot.

A spokesman for the Durst Organization declined comment.

Oh, to Be Douglas Durst Now That Summer’s Here