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Pentagon Interested in Leasing Space at Trump Tower: Spokesman

A Pentagon spokesman says the Department of Defense is interested in acquiring a "limited" amount of leased space at the 68-story luxury skyscraper.
Image: Republican president-elect Donald Trump's Trump Tower is seen in the Manhattan borough of New York
Republican president-elect Donald Trump's Trump Tower is seen in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., November 27, 2016.DARREN ORNITZ / Reuters

Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan boasts a full-time doorman, luxury amenities, private elevators and sweeping views of the New York City skyline.

And it could soon be home to a high-profile tenant: the Department of Defense.

A Pentagon spokesman said Wednesday that the department is interested in leasing a "limited" amount of space at the 68-story skyscraper where President Donald Trump resides when he's not in the White House.

"The space is necessary for the personnel and equipment who will support the POTUS at his residence in the building," Lt. Col. JB Brindle, a Pentagon spokesman, told NBC News. He said the Defense Department would work through "appropriate channels and in accordance with all applicable legal requirements" during the leasing process.

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There is already a large contingent of Secret Service personnel who maintain a round-the-clock presence at the Fifth Avenue address, which accommodates both residential and commercial tenants. But in addition to the Secret Service, the president as commander in chief is also afforded security via the White House Military Office that oversees his travel itinerary.

Rental costs at Trump Tower come at a pretty penny.

Available commercial space there runs $80 to $100 per square foot — and a full floor can pull $1.2 million to $1.5 million a year, said Jared Horowitz, of the real estate firm Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, which leases commercial space at the building.

Any Pentagon rental is sure to raise questions of conflict as the federal government would be sending tax dollars to the Trump Organization, which is run by the Trump family and owns the building.

Related: President Trump Resigns From Businesses, Leaves Sons, CFO in Charge

Trump's business dealings remain under scrutiny even after he resigned from his namesake company and more than 400 affiliated entities because of his job as president. The Trump Organization said he transferred title, management and authority of the companies to a trust under the management of his sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, and Allen Weisselberg, its chief financial officer.

Meanwhile, the tower remains a hive of activity.

The street outside — featuring luxe shops such as Gucci and Tiffany & Co. — has been shut down to vehicular traffic and is a popular staging ground for protesters upset by the president and his policies.

First lady Melania Trump and son Barron continue to live in the tower's penthouse suite, but they are expected to move into the White House after the end of the school year.