Google’s purchase of a Manhattan building, estimated to cost $2 billion, and the largest US real estate transaction this year for a single building, is a vote of confidence in New York City, Victor Calanog, of Reis, Inc., told CNBC Wednesday.
“They wouldn't be plunging this much money into the New York real estate market, if they felt like they were going to be catching a falling knife,” said Calanog, Reis's director or research. Reis assesses values in the real estate market.
“In other words,” he added, “they could potentially buy this property next year if they felt like prices were going to continue to fall. But it looks like they're saying it looks like prices have bottomed out.”
The building is chock full of engineers and designers, along with lots of free food for Google employees. It features a casual working atmosphere—something Google is known for—that encourages creativity and innovation. (Get a look at Google's digs in the video clip to the left.)
The 15-story structure houses Google’s second-largest engineering presence outside of the company's headquarters in Mountain View, Calif.
It covers a full city block and has nearly three million square feet—valued at about $600 per square foot. Google itself occupies 500,000 square feet of the building, which accommodates some 2,000 employees.
Other companies with offices in the building include Deutsch Advertising, Sprint, WebMD, Nike, Barnes and Noble.com, The Bank of New York and Verizon.