Is Condé Nast, The First Name in New York Media, Moving to New Jersey?
The elite media company may be moving its Manhattan headquarters across the Hudson
Condé Nast, the high-profile media company that took up residence at One World Trade Center after vacating its Midtown headquarters at the Times Square address formerly known as the Condé Nast Building in 2014, is once again packing up and hitting the road in search of less glamorous pastures — this time in New Jersey.
Bloomberg reports that the company, the longtime publisher of several prestigious magazines including Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair and the New Yorker, is looking for about 400,000 square feet of office space to split between Manhattan and New Jersey. This rumored relocation plan represents a significant downgrade from the roughly one million square feet of space the shrinking media giant occupies at One World Trade, some of which has been subleased in recent years as Condé has downsized amid the long, slow death of print media.
The Jersey relocation is yet another sign of the times for the fading magazine industry, which has suffered a steady decline in recent decades that has only been exacerbated by the pandemic. Condé Nast, the leader of the once glamorous media empire as immortalized in The Devil Wears Prada, has since become the face of the industry’s 21st-century decline, weathering a series of highly publicized staff cuts and downgrades.
Of course, Condé is hardly the only company reconsidering office space needs and expenses amid the pandemic. With many employees of various industries still working from home full-time nearly a year after COVID-19 first swept the nation, many companies are rightfully questioning whether they need to shell out for office space at all. Moreover, it stands to reason that even if Condé Nast does manage to break its 25-year lease at One World Trade — which, by the way, the company’s landlords have deemed unlikely — and move to office space in Jersey City, many Condé employees will probably continue working from home in New York (or at least Connecticut) for the foreseeable future.
It’s not that there’s anything wrong with New Jersey, per se. But in the bygone media heyday, it was the kind of place from which you’d expect Condé Nast interns and low-level employees to commute into work, not where the first name in New York media itself would be headquartered. But in case you haven’t heard, times are changing, and when the publisher of the New Yorker is considering relocating to New Jersey, we’re living in very strange times indeed.
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