Most of iconic Long Island City tower may be empty for months now that Amazon deal fell apart

One Court Square, formerly the Citicorp Building, in Long Island City will begin housing Amazon workers next year.
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When Amazon announced it would create its HQ2 campus in Long Island City in November it signed a letter of intent to lease most of One Court Square, the 50-story office tower that used to be known as the Citicorp Building, as a temporary headquarters during the massive build out planned for Anable Basin.

Amazon planned on moving in 700 employees at One Court Square this year and expanding its presence to nearly 3,000 workers in 2020.

Savanna, the real estate company that bought the tower last year and said it was thrilled that Amazon had selected One Court Square, now needs to find a new tenant after the e-commerce giant pulled out of its HQ2 deal on Feb. 14.

Without new tenants, the tower will be mostly empty in about 10 months — making it one of the first casualties of the Amazon failure.

Citigroup, the building’s anchor tenant since it opened in 1990, planned to move most of its employees out of the tower and vacate a million square feet on 31 floors of office space a year before its lease was up to make way for Amazon — and even though the e-commerce giant cancelled its deal with the state and city on Feb. 14, Citigroup is not going to stay put.

“Our Long Island City presence consists of One Court Square and Two Court Square, where we have 3,000 and 500 people respectively,” a Citigroup spokesperson said. “In order to accommodate Amazon’s plans to build a headquarters in Long Island City, we had planned to move about 1,500 people at One Court Square to other floors there or to Two Court Square.

“While these transitional plans may change, our long-term plans to relocate most of our current employees in Long Island City to other New York metropolitan area locations have not changed. Our lease at One Court Square ends in 2020 and at that point, we will have at least 1,000 people at Two Court Square,” the spokesperson added.

A Savanna spokesman declined to comment.

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