Park Avenue is an epic stretch of road. The businesses and residents that call it home tend to have one thing in common: prestige – a nice mix of money and power. Or at least that perception.
Prestige used to matter a lot in banking – and it still does, to a certain degree – but not as much as it used to. The most recent example is news that JPMorgan is considering dumping its Park Avenue headquarters for some more modest digs.
The New York Post is reporting that JPMorgan is in talks with developers at the World Trade Center and on the Far West Side about potentially relocating from its longtime home at 270 Park Ave. The talks are only said to be exploratory – a “kicking of the tires,” so to speak – but sources told the Post that Chief Executive Jamie Dimon is undertaking a comprehensive review of all of the bank’s real estate holdings.
Potential suitors include buildings in Hudson Yards and in Manhattan West, as well as one of the WTC towers. Money is said to be a main motivation, along with the benefits of moving into a newer, more technologically savvy building. Likely, JPMorgan wouldn’t make any moves for at least the next few years. Construction hasn’t even begun at some of the locations JPMorgan is said to be considering.
What is more certain, however, is that the bank is planning to move more back office employees out of town – and out of state. An unknown number of back office employees will be pushed out to New Jersey and even Delaware as the bank seeks to cut costs, according to the report.
The news comes on the heels of a February report that JPMorgan is planning to move front and back office employees across the East River to downtown Brooklyn’s MetroTech Center. Goldman Sachs has been doing something similar for years, building up its cheaper Salt Lake City office while it trims more expensive Manhattan staffers.
It’s all about location, location, location for banks these days. The cheaper the better it seems.
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