IBM leases Rochester buildings to Charter
IBM is leasing two buildings on its Rochester campus to the cable-television provider Charter Communications.
Both companies confirmed Monday that a lease agreement has been signed. After some retrofitting, Charter is slated to move into the 333 and 002 Buildings on the IBM campus along U.S. 52 North.
"We will maintain our current locations in the Rochester community, located at 3993 Heritage Place N.W., as well as the local call center, which is located at 5720 Bandel Road N.W.," she said.
She declined to provide further details.
A permit for interior demolition work in the 002 Building, filed by Benike Construction of Rochester, specified that the work is being done for a "future Charter Business" office. Charter Business is the division of the cable company that sells Internet and telephone services directly to businesses.
The 002 Building was the home of IBM's blood donation center on the main level with offices on the second.
IBM confirmed the lease agreement but declined to provide other details.
Spokeswoman Mary Welder did point out that leasing unused space on the
campus was not something new for Big Blue.
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies has leased space there since IBM sold its hard-disk drive unit to Hitachi in 2003 for $2.05 billion. It's located on the west end of IBM's campus.
The 333 Building is located farther west than the 114 Building. It's near the power plant and utilities area. That two-story building is primarily an open warehouse/industrial space with a mezzaine level.
IBM's sprawling presence in Rochester has shrunk in recent years due to a series of layoffs and a shift of its local manufacturing operations overseas.
The technology giant closely guards the secret of how many employees work here or at any other individual site. During much of its history in Rochester, IBM would report its local workforce numbers at the end of every year. The last annual IBM workforce count was on Dec. 31, 2008, when the company reported that it had 4,200 employees in Rochester. Unofficial estimates place today's employment at 3,000 or less.
In April, IBM moved its final employees out of the last 100,000-square-foot space it had leased in the "White Buildings", also known as the 41st Street Professional Campus. The 435,000-square-foot 41st Street campus, which is near IBM's main site, was originally built to house Big Blue's employees, but they were no longer needed as IBM's employee count shrunk.