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Midtown

trump tower, nypd, trump tower security

Via Krystal T’s Flickr

Following back-to-back fatal fires in 1998 at two New York City buildings that lacked working sprinklers, public officials advocated for new regulations requiring sprinklers in all buildings. Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s administration that year pushed for legislation to address the lack of sprinklers in high-rise towers. But real estate developers, including President Donald Trump, fought against the proposals, citing the high expense of retrofitting existing buildings with them, as the Washington Post reported.

After fierce lobbying from developers, including Trump who personally called a dozen council members, the city enacted a law in 1999 that would require sprinklers in new construction but not existing buildings, exempting the president’s Trump Tower. On Saturday, a fire ripped through a 50th-floor apartment at Trump Tower, killing a 67-year-old art dealer. Sprinklers were never installed at the Fifth Avenue property.

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Design, Green Design, Midtown

Rendering via Sam Biroscak/ Design Pavilion 2018

New York City has 280 miles of scaffolding, totaling more than 7,700 sidewalk sheds in front of 7,752 buildings. Described as pervasive eyesores and sunlight-blockers, scaffolding has an unflattering reputation in the city. Artist Sam Biroscak is looking to change the public perception of these sidewalk sheds, by highlighting it as an “under-appreciated” urban element in his conceptual design. Dubbed Mossgrove, Biroscak’s project would create an architectural pavilion in Times Square made of two materials seen as nuisances: moss and scaffolding. The proposal calls for the installation be built during NYCxDESIGN, a nine-day event featuring interactive installations and talks. The theme of this year’s Design Pavilion will be “From This Day Forward” (h/t Untapped Cities).

See the design

Celebrities, Midtown

432 via DBOX; Alex Rodriguez via Wiki Commons; Jennifer Lopez via Wiki Commons

Update 4/2/18: The pair picked up a three-bedroom, 4.5-bathroom that takes up half of the 36th floor of 432 Park, according to Observer. The apartment measures just over 4,000 square feet and features its own elevator, oak floorings, a library and custom-designed eat-in kitchen.

Power-couple Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez, affectionately known as J-Rod, have purchased an apartment for $15.316 million at 432 Park Avenue, the tallest residential building in the Western Hempishere. As Mansion Global reported, the duo picked up a 4,000-square-foot unit with three bedrooms and four and a half baths. The deal, which closed in February, turned out to be less expensive than expected, as the couple in October reportedly checked out a $40.5 million three-bedroom and an $82 million penthouse.

More details here

City Living, Midtown

Via Empire State Realty Trust

If you’re lucky enough to be blessed with Empire State Building sightlines, your views will, as of this week, include a five-minute sparkling light show every hour, on the hour, between sunset and 2 AM nightly. As Time Out New York reports, this latest addition to the iconic spire’s light show repertoire joins a lighting tradition that began in 1932 and includes holiday flair–red, white, and blue lights on the Fourth of July, the green and orange of the Irish flag on St. Patrick’s Day–music-enhanced light shows, and color changes to salute occasions and organizations every night of the year.

See the skyline sparkle

Art, Midtown

zayd menk, manhattan model, midtown

Zimbabwe-based artist Zayd Menk spent three months working on this 165 by 80 centimeter model of Midtown Manhattan. The 17-year-old student, who built the piece of art for a school project, used a plethora of electronic bits and pieces to build the reduced model: 263 hot glue sticks, 11 CPUs, 27 motherboards, 10 CRT motherboards, 15 batteries, 2 clocks, 4 watches, 3 hard drives, 3 graphics cards, 4 audio cards, 7 power supplies and 13 floppy disk readers (h/t designboom). The used electronics, plus lots of math and scouring of the internet, come together in Menk’s project in an art form he refers to as “recyclism.”

Learn more

Midtown East, Urban Design

Fisher Brothers unveiled on Tuesday the 17 finalists chosen for its “Beyond the Centerline” design competition after receiving more than 150 submissions. Participants were asked to think of creative and ambitious ideas to transform the traffic medians along Park Avenue between 46th and 57th Streets. The finalists did not disappoint. Proposals call for an Alpine mountain, a massive aquarium, floating gardens, mini-golf, an elevated walkway and more. Although a jury will select the grand prize winner, all 17 proposals will be on display for public voting at Park Avenue Plaza, located at 55 East 52nd Street, from March 5 to March 9 for the second-place prize. Below, check out all of the unique projects.

See the ambitious ideas

Design, Midtown

Rendering courtesy of Eric Spencer

In November, Fisher Brothers first launched a design competition to bring life to the boring traffic medians along Park Avenue, between East 46th and East 57th Streets. The privately-funded contest, dubbed “Beyond the Centerline,” aims to spur creative thinking and unique ideas never before considered for the traffic medians. After the developer received more than 150 submissions from landscape architects and urban planners, the list has been narrowed to 17 finalists (h/t New York Times). Stand out proposals from the finalists include a mini-golf course, a glass aquarium and a curvy, elevated park.

More details here

Featured Story

Features, Midtown, NYC Guides

The 8 best places in Times Square that don’t suck

By Rebecca Fishbein, Tue, February 20, 2018

Photo via Richard BURGER/Flickr

One of the true marks of a New Yorker is an aversion to Times Square, where slow-walking out-of-towners clog sidewalks, costumed characters try to hug you for tips, and overpriced suburban chains like Olive Garden and Applebees abound. But a few bright spots exist amid the touristy madness and Broadway shows, and they’re worth a visit if you happen to be in the area, if not a specific trip (seriously, avoid Times Square at all costs if you can).

Here are a few of our favorites

Midtown, Recent Sales

432 Park Avenue

Photo via Douglas Elliman

CIM Group and Macklowe Properties announced on Wednesday that the world’s tallest residential building just broke another record: the single best-selling building in New York City. According to the developers, they have sold $2 billion in luxury condominiums at 432 Park Avenue, a 1,396-foot tower designed by renowned architect Rafael Viñoly. The building’s most significant closings include 48 residences selling for more than $20 million each.

More this way

affordable housing, housing lotteries, Major Developments, Midtown West

The lottery for TF Cornerstone’s massive building at 606 West 57th Street officially launched on Tuesday, offering 258 mixed-income rentals in the brand new 42-story tower. Designed by Arquitectonica, the rental, dubbed 606W57, boasts a unique, boxy design and will hold over 1,000 apartments. It sits near other West Side architectural standouts like the pyramid-shaped, Bjarke Ingels-designed Via57 West, as well as the Helena. Qualifying New Yorkers earning 40, 60 and 120 percent of the area median income can apply for units ranging from a $613/month studio to a $2,902/month three-bedroom.

Find out if you qualify

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