Karl Fischer-Designed Tower to Replace Beekman Place’s Piscane Seafood Building

September 2, 2015

Piscane Seafood, one of the oldest remaining fish markets in the city, closed this spring, and its humble 19th-century home at 940 First Avenue will be replaced by a 14-story residential building. According to permits filed with the city’s Department of Buildings yesterday, the narrow 25-foot-wide lot will give rise to a 141-foot-tall tower developed by Brooklyn-based CS Real Estate Group and designed by the often-maligned architect Karl Fischer. The building will provide a commercial storefront at ground level and thirteen floor-through units above, likely condominiums.

940 First Avenue, Karl Fischer, Pisacane, CS Real Estate Group
Image courtesy of Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York

The “bitterly nostalgic” blog Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York first reported the seafood shop’s closing in May, noting that the family-owned business may have been in existence for 160 years, thus ranking it in the league of the nearly-200-year-old Fulton Fish Market.

Piscane maintained a stellar reputation, providing the freshest catches to esteemed restaurants and loyal locals alike. Several Yelp reviewers comment on the shop’s fast service and appropriately overwhelming fishy odor. In 2003, Columbia University journalism student Salima Koroma caught up with the owners of Piscane and reported on the fish business’s ups and downs, foreshadowing its future. A video of her endeavor is above.

940 First Avenue, Karl Fischer, Pisacane, CS Real Estate Group
L to R: The Sutton; The Grand Beekman; The Beekmen Regent

The stretch of First Avenue bordering the Beekman Place and Sutton Place neighborhoods is well known for its classic New York vibe and specialty shops like Ideal Cheese and L. Simchick & Company Meats. The handful of new developments that have risen in the area, such as the Grand Beekman and the Beekman Regent, have drawn their designs from the area’s rich pre-war context. Near 940 First Avenue, Toll Brothers’ under-construction 30-story condominium the Sutton is applying a hand-laid brick facade. Its ten still-available homes are priced at an average of $1,893 per square foot. Over the past year, condos in the Beekman-Sutton Place area have sold at an average of $1,270 per square foot or a median price of $900,000.

940 First Avenue, Karl Fischer, Pisacane, CS Real Estate Group
Aerial rendering courtesy of CityRealty

Follow the development of 940 First Avenue at CityRealty.


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