As part of a five-year, $210 million plan to significantly upgrade Grand Central’s subway station, developer SL Green hopes to install new staircases to the train platforms, two new street-level entrances and a refurbished mezzanine level, and a 4,000-square-foot ground-level commuter waiting area. The improvements were conceived in conjunction with the MTA and the de Blasio administration earlier this year as the first component of the Midtown East Rezoning project.
The transit upgrades must all be completed before tenants can occupy One Vanderbilt (planned for completion in January 2020), SL Green’s new 65-story office tower planned for the entire block west of Grand Central and north of East 42nd Street. Designed by Kohn Pederson Fox, the tower will be the second-tallest building in the city when completed.
More on the upgrades ahead
When it comes to skyscrapers, we put a lot of trust in architects. We have to trust that they know what they’re doing, and these seemingly impossible buildings are safe to be in and around. It’s even harder to trust what used to be known as the Citicorp or Citigroup Center, now 601 Lexington Avenue, whose bottom floors are like four stilts, holding 50 stories of building above them. It looks like a strong wind would blow the whole structure over. And when the building was constructed in 1977, before some emergency repairs, that was true.
The dangerous details after the break
Here’s a great little twist on the New York City real estate market, courtesy of the recent trend to convert rooms in some of Manhattan’s most exclusive hotels into condominium apartments: fractional ownership—the timeshare to end all timeshares.
That’s right, now you can savor the pleasure of residing at one of the most glamorous addresses in the world with all the amenities the St. Regis has to offer, including the Remede Spa and Fitness center, salon, twice daily maid service, and 24-hour butler service—all without having to shell out the multimillion dollar sums typically associated with this kind of elegant living.
See what fractional ownership puts within reach
Frank Lloyd Wright is one of architecture’s most important figures, and you can see his work in five countries and 37 of 50 states. But when it comes to New York City, there is only one major Wright construction to be found: The Guggenheim. There is also a pre-fab house in Staten Island and one in Blauvelt just north of the city, but what other work did he do in the five boroughs? It turns out that Wright designed two other major projects in NYC, but both have been demolished. Here’s a look at these lost works by the great architect.
See the historic Frank Lloyd Wright works here
There’s no doubt that the aluminium facade of this Midtown townhouse is a showstopper. Set between two traditional red brick homes on East 51st Street, the building’s shiny, punctuated front is sure to get every passersby’s attention. But it wasn’t designed just to become talk of the town — it’s also meant to give the owners some much-needed privacy.
The interiors are just as unique
The Philip Johnson-designed Sony Tower at 550 Madison Avenue, one of the most notable postmodern office towers in New York City, is set to be partially converted to high-end condos, as states planes filed by developer Chetrit Group. It’s not known which of the building’s 37 floors the residential units will occupy, but Chetrit, led by Joseph Chetrit, has said in the past that it will convert the upper floors and either keep the lower floors as offices or turn them into a luxury hotel.
Construction likely won’t begin for at least one to two years since Sony still leases office space. When the developer purchased the building from Sony in 2013 for $1.1 billion at auction, Sony committed to remaining in the offices for around three years until moving to a new space near Madison Square. Chetrit outbid 21 rivals and paid $685 million more for the building than Sony did in 2002.
Find out more about the development here
It looks like the Chrysler Building is about to get a new neighbor. According to the New York Times, SL Green has reportedly proposed the development of a 1,200-foot, 65-story tower that would occupy the block between 42nd and 43rd Streets, and Vanderbilt and Madison Avenues. This proposal will have to undergo a review process as part of a new de Blasio administration plan to rezone an area of Vanderbilt Avenue for larger buildings.
De Blasio’s proposal is a 2.0 version of a failed bid by Michael Bloomberg that would rezone an area around Grand Central Terminal. Bloomberg’s proposal – which would affect a 73-block area around the terminal – concerned officials and preservationists, who were concerned that the plan would add to the congestion in the area. Fulfilling one of his campaign promises, de Blasio has devised a plan to mitigate those issues as well as keep the city competitive for decades to come, by creating more office space in the prime business location.
Learn more about the iconic tower’s new neighbor
The City Council’s Committee on Land Use gave approval to Rockefeller University’s plan to construct two new buildings over the Franklin D. Roosevelt Drive on Manhattan’s east side. In exchange, the school, which controls air rights over the 4-block stretch starting at East 64th, has agreed to invest $8 million to develop and maintain a portion of the East River Esplanade.
More on the development here
Though the famous marble lions that stand guard over the iconic Beaux-Arts building at Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street aren’t talking, the patience and fortitude of scholars and professors all over the tri-state area may have played some role in the shelving of a $300 million renovation plan for the New York Public Library’s flagship location.
In the midst of three lawsuits and regular protests on the library steps, the library reversed course on revamping the midtown Manhattan building (which celebrated its 100 year anniversary in 2011) and moving 1.5 million books to New Jersey, a move that brought a sigh of relief to researchers worried about delays in gaining access to essential publications.
What shelved this $300 million renovation?
One look and you may never want to leave this exquisite sun-drenched and spacious home, part of The Residences, a gorgeous new Gwathmey Siegel designed masterpiece developed by Bizzi & Partners.
Sitting 60 stories above one of the most desired streets in Manhattan, this 2BR/2.5 bath residence at 400 Fifth Avenue bestows breathtaking panoramic views from just about every room. Every detail, from the hardwood black oak flooring throughout to the ample closet space, ensures no matter where you are in this gracious home, life is better simply by being there. In fact, the residences at 500 Fifth are so beautiful the building even has its own coffee table book, 500 Fifth Avenue: A New Gwathmey Siegel Landmark, coming out this fall!
Take a peek inside this gorgeous residence