Affordable Housing or Lack Thereof
Last night, nearly 500 New Yorkers gathered at the New York Public Library’s main branch for a forum on the wave of skyscrapers that are rising along the Southern edge of Central Park. Skyscrapers that will, depending on whom you ask, either transform Central Park into a gloomy airshaft or create shadows as fleeting and insubstantial as a cloud moving across the sun. Concerns were raised, grievances aired and oligarchs denigrated. Politicians vowed to defend the public good, the community’s benefit was invoked repeatedly, and Gary Barnett briefly managed to distract everyone from the matter at hand by dissing the Midtown East rezoning. All of which is to say it was a cathartic, and at times entertaining evening, but in the end a futile one. For the sunlight-blocking skyscrapers being debated are, at this point, essentially, fait accompli.
Seven years ago, when the Westside mega-development known as Hudson Yards was but a twinkle in the collective eye of real estate moguls and Bloomberg officiates, grumbling had already begun about inequality among the neighborhood’s residents. Those residents, of course, had yet to arrive. And the complaints seemed stranger still given that Hudson Yards had, Read More
At a meeting last night, members of the Art Students League approved Extell’s controversial plan to cantilever a 1,424-foot skyscraper above the school’s landmarked French Renaissance building on W. 57th Street. The Smith + Gordon Gill-designed tower, to rise at 217 West 57th Street, has now cleared the final roadblock needed to move forward with construction.
Extell’s controversial plan to cantilever a 1,424-foot skyscraper at 217 West 57th Street over the Art Students League, which won city approval last fall, will be abandoned if the League’s members reject the deal at a vote tonight, according to the developer. Extell has promised to walk away from the deal, which would net the League $31.8 million, and move forward without the cantilever, if the League does not reach an agreement by Wednesday night.
The 12 Days Of Christmas Gift Guide
Gary Barnett‘s Extell Development has closed on an ownership stake in 212 Fifth Avenue, Mr. Barnett confirmed to Commercial Observer.
The 26th Street office building partnership deal closed for $90 million on January 13 and was recorded with the city yesterday, PropertyShark records indicate.
If that most irksome of holiday types—the man who has everything—can be said to have sub-categories, the real estate development mogul must rank with the most rarefied and, indeed, the most difficult to shop for. Golf clubs and pinstripes, Maseratis, vacation homes, power and influence: these are desires long-since fulfilled. Still, we’ve managed to come Read More
The past decade has been the best of times—and the worst of times—in real estate. The recession cut access to capital, leading to slow development growth in New York. Fortunately, developers and buyers are coming back with a vengeance. As 2013 draws to a close, The Observer looked back at some of the challenges and high points of the past year, and what we have to look forward in the very near future. This is what’s in and what’s out in the New York market. Read More
At 6:30 a.m., West 58th Street is a hushed world, still more night than day in the predawn blue of an early fall morning. The occasional runner treads by en route to Central Park, but, for the most part, the city that never sleeps is, in fact, asleep, a slumbering population that once included Joel and Sherri Maxman.
The Maxmans live at 152 West 58th Street, a nine-story co-op that would be utterly unremarkable were it not for One57, one of the tallest buildings in North America and among the most luxurious condos in the world, rising within spitting distance of its backside.
These days, the Maxmans and the rest of the building are early risers whether they like it or not, awake as soon as the hoist begins its creaking ascent up the exterior of the 1,004-foot skyscraper at 6:30 or 6:40 or 6:45 a.m., its journey punctuated by the clang of counterweights at the top. Elsewhere in the city, construction is restricted to waking hours, but One57’s developer, Extell, has exemptions that allow work to start in the early morning and continue into the evening, seven days per week.
Red Carpet Real Estate
Despite strong community opposition, including that of the local community board, this afternoon the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved Extell’s request to cantilever its 1,424-foot skyscraper over the Art Students League.
The vote was six to one in favor of the application, which will allow Extell to cantilever its Smith + Gordon Gill-designed tower at 217 West 57th Street over the comparatively diminutive French Renaissance building next door. In their discussion before the vote, the LPC cited the minimal impact of the cantilever—which is some 290 feet high and not visible from all vantage points—on the experience of the landmark, as well as the building’s contextually-sensitive cladding.
Clearly, Christian Candy—one half of uber-posh London development duo Candy & Candy—was not deterred from flashy New York real estate investments by brother Nick’s recent scuffle over a pair of apartments at One57. Mr. Candy—that is, Christian—has closed on the 104-year-old Morris Mansion at 19 East 70th Street, The New York Times reports. At $35 million, the sale was (shocker!), the biggest deal of the week.