Techies Lift Aged Midtown South to New Heights

The Dutch, it is said, bought Manhattan Island in 1626 from its native American inhabitants for about $24 in trade goods. Half a millennium later, that sum wouldn't buy a square foot of office space in New York City's trendiest real estate market, the area below 34th Street known as Midtown South. Fueled by an influx of workers from the Internet economy and a record 17 consecutive quarters of rising prices, the average cost per square foot of office space in Midtown South hit an all-time high of $62.02 in the first quarter. At 6.1 percent in the first quarter, the area had the lowest vacancy rate of any U.S. central business district.