It’s the biggest show on the block since James Brown played The Apollo.
At the end of August, Danforth Development announced that it had found a partner to move forward with its plans to develop two 26-story towers above the century-old Victoria Theater. The project has been in the works for years now, a pet project of local politician Keith Wright. A new hotel and apartment building are meant to sustain a clutch of cultural institutions on the first few buildings of the complex, and things were well underway until the recession hit.
Now, Exact Capital is pitching in $100 million to get the project off the ground. Way off the ground.
Promises: they’re easy to make, but hard to keep. Just ask the residents and landowners of West Harlem.
For the last five years, a number of developments have been proposed along 125th Street, but most have fallen through. Take, for instance, Vornado Realty Trust’s ambitious plans for a 600,000-square-foot office building on the corner of Park Avenue that would have housed Major League Baseball’s new television network. That building never materialized, nor did a later development, planned on the same site, for a high-rise that included a Marriott hotel.
So what’s the beef? Why are so many projects along 125th Street (as well as nearby Lexington and Morningside avenues) habitually planned and then abandoned?
While Bill Clinton’s decision to rent office space in Harlem may seem like a modest one–imagine if the former president using taxpayer money to pay Park Avenue prices–he still pays more, on a per-square-foot basis, than any of his presidential colleagues, even after renegogiating his lease for the top floor of 55 West 125th Street.
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Another new development project canceled.
Speaking at an investor conference yesterday, Vornado CFO Joseph Macnow gave word that the company’s troubled plans for Harlem Park, an office tower on 125th Street, have been officially scuttled.
“We’ve shut down a couple of development projects,” Mr. Macnow said. “We were going to build Read More
The Bloomberg administration has designated a team led by Chicago-based developer General Growth Properties and Archstone Smith to construct a 1.7 million-square-foot mixed-use, mixed-income complex on East 125th Street, the city announced today.
The selection was coupled with a vote on the project by the City Council, which this afternoon approved a rezoning Read More
Harlem’s most ubiquitous activist and resident Cassandra, Sikhulu Shange, has been warning against the perils of gentrification and the displacement of small businesses in the community for decades. He became living proof of his most dire prophesies this summer when he was forced to close his iconic music store on 125th Street, the Record Shack, Read More
The gentrification train keeps roaring its way up to Harlem and Morningside Heights, or should we say "SoCo."
Today Curbed posted two items that spell trouble or progress, depending on your point of view. W Hotel’s parent company Starwood is building a branch of its new Aloft brand on Frederick Douglass Bpulevard and 124th Read More
The City Council is expected to pass a major rezoning of 125th Street this afternoon, opening up Harlem’s historic main thoroughfare to substantial levels of new development.
The move comes as the plan, pushed forward by the city and altered some by the Council, has met opposition from many in Harlem, who claim Read More
The city’s proposed 125th Street rezoning seems all but certain to pass the City Council, as a key Council member, Inez Dickens, signaled her support for a modified version of the plan this morning during a City Council subcommittee meeting. The majority of the Council is expected to follow Ms. Dickens’ lead on the Read More
Charles Barron, a City Council representative from what he called “the People’s Republic of Brooklyn,” stood on the steps of City Hall this morning before a scheduled hearing on 125th Street rezoning and denounced it as an “abusive use of eminent domain.”
“Harlem is not for sale,” he said, prompting cheers from the Read More