Tomorrow, Durst/Fetner will go before the Zoning and Franchise Subcommittee of the City Council, one of the final stops in the months-long public approval process for the developer’s angular apartment building at the western edge of 57th Street. Councilwoman Gale Brewer has sent a letter to the developer outlining her demands ahead of the hearing. They largely follow concerns she has had from the start, namely the affordability of the project, community space and an enticing streetscape for the project.
When Douglas Durst began deciding, yet again, what to do with the almost block-long property he owns at 57th Street and the Hudson River, City Planning Commissioner Amanda Burden urged the developer to think big. A high-tech data center, a school and a hotel had all fallen through, so Mr. Durst had fallen back on that most reliable form of New York City development: housing.
Ms. Burden wanted something iconic, especially for a project on such a prominent street at such a prominent location right on the waterfront. With Hudson River Park right there, it ought to be iconic. Mr. Durst delivered something BIG indeed, hiring the Danish wunderkinds at Bjarke Ingles Group to design his project.
Yesterday, Ms. Burden got to put her official stamp on the project, when she and the rest of the City Planning Commission approved Durst/Fetner’s BIG pyramid.
Big Pointy Teeth
Curbed stumbled on Durst Fetner’s closely watched site on West 57th Street and the Hudson, and our blogging comrades discovered that excavation is underway at the site. The Observer has been eagerly awaiting a groundbreaking ceremony, set to coincide with the developers filing for a rezoning to transform the site from a bland four-story box into the dramatic pyramid apartments designed by Danish wunderkind Bjarke Ingels. It appears Durst Fetner is going the quiet route for the time being on the project known as West 57.
It may just be the most awaited project of the year, and by next year, it will begin to become a reality. West 57, the high-design ziggurat created by the cheeky Bjarke Ingels Group for Durst Fetner, is set to break ground as early as March. That is what Bjarke Ingels let slip at the ASAP party Monday night.
During a presentation of his playful projects—the plaza of many countries, the trash-to-power plant that blows smoke rings—atop the Standard, when Mr. Ingels got to the slides on West 57, he declared very excitedly, “Starting in March, this very exciting project will begin to take shape just a few miles from here.”
Hotel legend Ian Schrager announced yesterday that his newly-formed PUBLIC brand will be teaming up with residential developers Durst Fetner Residential to launch a new hotel/rental apartment hybrid on 855 Sixth Avenue. Called PUBLIC New York, the 250-plus key New York hotel will be Mr. Schrager’s second site in his PUBLIC brand since unveiling PUBLIC Chicago in September. The building will also feature 60,000 square feet of retail and 315 rental apartments. Fresh from a recent trip to Chicago, Mr. Schrager spoke with The Commercial Observer yesterday about the design of PUBLIC New York, the status of the Clock Tower building, and his love for all things Apple and Trader Joe’s.
So the architecture critics love Bjarke Ingels’ new plan for a hulking Hell’s Kitchen development, but what about the neighbors?
Durst Fetner Residential brought their idea for the pyramid-like 57th Street apartment complex to Community Board 4 last night to a mixture of adoring fans and skeptical residents.
The project, first immortalized in Read More
Housing for All
Back when we first got a glimpse of Dutch architect Bjarke Ingel’s new apartment project for Durst Fetner, it immediately became the most exciting new project in at least a generation. Though seen only in comic-book form and as a fleeting still from a flythrough video (see below), the building at 57th Street Read More
One of the largest development sites left in the city has attracted some serious interest from some serious players. The Journal is reporting that seven bids have been made for the first phase of Hunters Point South, a planned 6,000-unit housing complex in Queens that was originally to be the site of Read More
One of the most puzzling things about reporting building sales is the unwillingness of developers to reveal the prices they’ve paid for their newfound prizes. Their reticence might be understandable, were it not for the fact that the city’s Department of Finance makes the deeds available on its Web site just weeks after they change Read More