When you think of the heart of Midtown, the first thing that comes to mind is probably not a turn-of-the-century mansion dripping with historic details. But nestled amongst the office buildings on West 56th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues is just that. Designed by architects Warren & Wetmore of Grand Central fame, 10 West 56th Street has gone through several incarnations over its lifetime, from private residence (including the one-time home of Elizabeth Taylor!) to high-end retail space.
Its most recent transformation was helmed by Roxana Q. Girand, founder of real estate development firm Sebastian Capital. Wanting to merge her expertise and passion in commercial space, art, and beauty, she opened the Elizabeth Collective this past fall as part art pop-up event space, part permanent studio workspaces. 6sqft recently visited Roxana at the Collective to get a behind-the-scenes look at the incredible French Renaissance Revival building, see how she’s given the space a new life, and learn more about what’s to come.
Two years ago 6sqft reported on the rise of a singular single-family residence on a Williamsburg corner lot; the amazing townhouse was built from 21 steel shipping containers, tamed and transformed into a sleek and surprisingly livable home by the architecture and design firm LOT-EK for the Brooklyn couple behind neighborhood barbecue favorite Fette Sau. If you’ve always wanted to live in the 25-by-100-foot, 5,000-square-foot home at 2 Monitor Street, now’s your chance; the house just hit the market for $5.5 million.
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Images by QuallsBenson
A 15,000-square-foot park—the latest component of Essex Crossing to open to the public—is now complete on the Lower East Side, right in time for summer. Designed by landscape architecture firm West 8 (best known for designing the Hills at Governors Island), the park is a welcome addition to the neighborhood, where the ambitious Essex Crossing project is still in full swing, with seven of its nine sites now open or under construction.
A rendering of the front façade of the Gilder Center (L) by Studio Gang, 2019; Center interior (R) by MIR and Studio Gang, 2019.
Following delays caused by a lawsuit aimed at protecting the adjacent, city-owned Theodore Roosevelt Park, a groundbreaking ceremony on June 12 officially kicked off construction of the American Museum of Natural History’s new Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation. Designed by architect Jeanne Gang—who was initially brought on board the project seven years ago—the $383 million Center will add new galleries, classrooms, a theatre, and an expanded library while linking 10 museum buildings for better circulation throughout the campus. Originally slated to open in 2020, the construction process is expected to last three years.
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Photo by Laurian Ghinitoiu.
The new L-shaped residential building at 121 East 22nd Street represents Rem Koolhaas‘s architecture firm OMA‘s first ground-up Manhattan project; developers Toll Brothers City Living have released new photos of the eye-catching structure on the border between the Gramercy and Madison Square Park neighborhoods, highlighting its unique design. The new condominium residence is comprised of two blocks that straddle an existing tower, the 11-story School of the Future, constructed in 1915. The building’s north tower has two interlocking planes that meet to form a distinct, three-dimensional corner. The 13-story south tower features an “undulating grid of punched windows” overlooking 22nd Street.
More views this way
Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York outside 54 Pearl Street on opening day. Taken from Broad Street facing east. 1907. From the archives at Fraunces Tavern Museum. Courtesy of the Fraunces Tavern Museum
Fraunces Tavern is breaking out the champagne this year to celebrate its 300th birthday. Called “the oldest standing structure in Manhattan,” the building you see today at the corner of Broad and Pearl Streets owes much to 20th-century reconstruction and restoration, but the site has a storied and stately past. In fact, any toasts delivered to mark the Tavern’s tri-centennial will have to stack up against George Washington’s farewell toast to his officers, delivered in the Tavern’s Long Room, on December 4, 1783.
Named for Samuel Fraunces, the patriot, spy, steward, and gourmand, who turned the old De Lancey Mansion at 54 Pearl Street into 18th century New York’s hottest watering hole, Fraunces Tavern connects New York’s proud immigrant history with its Dutch past, Revolutionary glory, maritime heritage, and continuous culinary prowess. Dive into the building’s unparalleled past and discover secrets and statesmen, murder and merriment – all served up alongside oysters as big as your face.
Learn the whole history
Rendering by Darc Studio.
In designing a Crown Heights girls’ school seeking an addition to their current campus, design and architecture firm ODA New York challenged the traditional American school building model, taking the future of urban density into account. The resulting design introduces a sixth facade, giving the structure a new set of faces to apply materials and create openings.
More views of the cool new-school design
Conceptual rendering by AKRF and W Architecture and Landscape Architecture
The city announced on Thursday that plans to make Hudson Street between Canal and West Houston Streets in Hudson Square into a grand boulevard with wider sidewalks, parking-protected bike lanes and small outdoor “living rooms” with seating surrounded by greenery are moving forward with design and construction teams on board. Prima Paving Corporation, Sam Schwartz Engineering, and Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects have been chosen as design-build consultants for the project according to the city’s Economic Development Corporation and Department of Transportation, as well as the Hudson Square BID. The design-build concept means that contracting both the design and construction components to the firms, which will act as a team, can streamline the process.
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In March, Rockefeller Group, the famous developers behind their eponymous Rockefeller Center, announced that they’d be building their first residential project in their 90-year history. Dubbed Rose Hill for the historic area that once occupied today’s Nomad, the 600-foot tower at 30 East 29th Street is a uniquely modern interpretation of the Art Deco style. Now we have an even better look at this striking bronze facade, as well as the expansive amenity spaces and luxury condo interiors. The new views coincide with sales launching; prices will start at $1.195 million for a studio.
More details and renderings this way
Following Thursday’s news of the death of 102-year-old Pritzker Prize-winning Chinese-American architect I.M. Pei, the spotlight has been focused on his many contributions throughout the world. His firm, Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, has had a hand in dozens of projects throughout New York City, though Pei himself was the principal designer for only a rare few. Below is a roundup of I.M. Pei’s NYC buildings, from a pedestrian plaza “superblock” in residential Brooklyn to the iconic Four Seasons Hotel, to the JFK Aiport Sundrome that was sadly demolished in 2011, and a never-realized futuristic 1956 Hyperboloid design that was to be a replacement for Grand Central Terminal