Image: Jennifer Rotner via Flickr.
Developer TF Cornerstone and investment firm MSD Partners have announced plans to purchase and tear down the Grand Hyatt building adjacent to Grand Central Terminal, the Wall Street Journal reports. The hotel brand will eventually return to the site in a form different from the smoked glass-clad building that was Donald Trump’s first major Manhattan development. In its place will rise a mixed-use project that includes 2 million square feet of high-octane office space. The planned development is one of four new towers in the works as a result of a 2017 Midtown East rezoning aimed at encouraging new office buildings as well as infrastructure improvements in the east side business district.
Image: Wikimedia Commons.
The new mixed-use development will include state-of-the-art Class A office and retail space as well as a new Grand Hyatt hotel. The project comes with a pledge to bring much-needed improvements to the transit infrastructure in the Grand Central Terminal transit complex, including enhanced connectivity and circulation in the terminal’s subway complex, new subway entrances, and design improvements. The project will also provide higher tax revenue for the East Midtown district.
Hyatt possesses a 100-year lease on the hotel property, which would have expired in 2077; the new development team plans to take over the lease. The hotel tower has the distinction of being Trump’s first solo success: The conversion of a run-down 42nd Street hotel that became the black glass-clad 30-story Grand Hyatt was raking in profits that exceeded $30 million a year by the time his 1987 bestseller “The Art of the Deal” was published.
According to the New York Times, “An extraordinary 40-year tax break that enabled Trump to get the hotel built has cost New York City $360 million to date in forgiven, or uncollected, taxes, with four years still to run.”
Image: Wikimedia Commons.
No final agreement has yet been signed; the project requires approval from the city and the state. The current 1,298-room hotel, which employs 925 people, will reportedly stay open until sometime in 2020. The New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council has negotiated a $165 million buyout agreement with Hyatt on behalf of hotel employees that would, for example, pay a room attendant with 30 years of experience over $214,000 in cash as well as pension credits.
Also falling as part of the area’s redevelopment plan will be 270 Park Avenue, on track to be the largest intentional demolition in history; developers applied for permits to tear down the JP Morgan HQ, formerly the Union Carbide Building, last month.
Also in progress near Grand Central: The 1,401-foot, 77-story office tower known as One Vanderbilt that will become NYC’s fourth-tallest skyscraper when completed in the third quarter of 2020.
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Neighborhoods : Midtown East