Via Wiki Commons
When most of us think of “lofts” in relation to Upper West Side apartments, our first thought is probably the commonplace storage or sleeping loft found in converted brownstones and townhouses. While we tend to associate actual loft apartments with downtown neighborhoods like Tribeca and Soho, there are a handful of Upper West Side condos and co-ops where you can find the same soaring ceilings and open floor plans. Ahead, we’ve rounded up the five loftiest options you’ll find north of Columbus Circle.
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Via Vornado Realty Trust and Robert A.M. Stern Architects
Last month, billionaire Ken Griffin closed on a penthouse at 220 Central Park South for over $239 million, making it the most expensive home ever sold in the United States. Griffin, the founder of the hedge fund Citadel, said he will not use the pricey pad as a primary residence, but instead as “a place to stay when he’s in town.” The staggering sale has renewed support from public officials for a pied-à-terre tax, which would place a yearly surcharge on homes worth $5 million and up, and apply to non-primary residences, as reported by the New York Times.
Rendering of 2 World Center via DBOX, courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group
Silverstein Properties, Inc. chairman Larry Silverstein has said construction may begin on the final World Trade Center tower before a committed tenant signs a lease, Bloomberg reports. Following work on the building’s foundation, the developer was waiting to progress with further work until a lease was signed. But optimism about the economy and strong leasing progress at neighboring towers may mean the building might rise “on spec.” The 2.8 million-square-foot office tower, designed by Bjarke Ingels Group, will be the last of Silverstein’s four skyscrapers to occupy the site.
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Since Amazon announced it had selected Long Island City for its new headquarters last fall, a lot of people have wondered what will happen to the neighborhood and its surrounding communities. While LIC has already undergone a series of radical changes of the past two decades—first there was an influx of artists seeking larger live-work spaces and later a wave of condo developments—the arrival of Amazon promises to have an even deeper impact on LIC.
And the potential negative effect of the tech giant moving into town has not gone unnoticed by public officials and locals, who have led a strong opposition campaign. It was reported on Friday that Amazon was reconsidering its plan to move to the neighborhood after facing an intense backlash from those who fear increased rents and even more congestion. But with no plan to officially abandon Queens, it’s important to understand what could happen if Amazon does put down roots in LIC by first looking at how the company has already changed Seattle, where it first set up shop back in 1994.
More on the effect
New York City is the endlessly romantic backdrop for more literary love stories than we could possibly count. In honor of Valentine’s Day, the NYPL asked their book experts for their favorite tales of love and the city; then they put them on a map for our exploration–and reading–pleasure.
Amore, this way
A foyer, sunken living room, original parquet floors, and a separate modern kitchen are not attributes commonly associated with studios, but this alcove studio on the Upper East Side offers all that and more for just $419,000. Located in the 1930s Eastgate co-ops at 235 East 73rd Street, the apartment is bright and sunny and surprisingly spacious with a separate sleeping alcove and roughly 400 square feet of space to work with.
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Via Queens Museum
It’s that time of year again–grab your history buff pals, die-hard New Yorkers, or anyone who loves a good round of trivia and head out to the Queens Museum on Friday, March 1st for the 12th annual Panorama Challenge. Hosted by the City Reliquary, Queens Museum, and The Levys’ Unique New York, the event uses the Panorama of the City of New York at the Queens Museum – a 1964 World’s Fair relic that is the world’s largest architectural scale model – to test participants’ knowledge on everything from Revolutionary NYC to Rock of Ages (geology) to Tunnel Time. To get ready, Quizmaster Jonathan Turer has shared a set of teaser questions, especially for 6sqft readers.
See how many you can answer. (No Googling allowed!)
After facing months of intense backlash from residents and local officials, Amazon is rethinking its plan to open a massive complex in the Queens neighborhood of Long Island City, the Washington Post reported on Friday. Sources told the newspaper, which is owned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, that executives at the tech company have had discussions to reassess the plan to open its “HQ2” in New York City. “The question is whether it’s worth it if the politicians in New York don’t want the project, especially with how people in Virginia and Nashville have been so welcoming,” a source told the Post.
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The centerpiece of this Upper West Side co-op at 2 West 67th Street is a stunning double-height living room with a 16-foot, north-facing window that spreads light throughout the apartment. Originally a sculptor’s studio, the prewar three-bedroom recently underwent a complete renovation by architect Andrew B. Ballard, who curated the residence with custom furniture—including spectacular oak bookcases—rugs, and sculptures that honor its artistic past. Just listed for $4,150,000, the home is steps away from Lincoln Center and Central Park West.
Take a look inside
Photo of Harriet Tubman Memorial, “Swing Low,” in Harlem via denisbin on Flickr
Harriet Tubman, the fearless abolitionist and conductor of the Underground Railroad who led scores of slaves to freedom in some 13 expeditions, fought for the Union Army during the Civil War, and dedicated herself to Women’s Suffrage later in life, was known as “Moses” in her own time, and is revered in our time as an extraordinary trailblazer. Her status as a groundbreaking African American woman also extends to the now-contentious realm of public statuary and historical commemoration, since Tubman was the first African American woman to be depicted in public sculpture in New York City.
Tubman’s statue, also known as “Swing Low,” was commissioned by the Department of Cultural Affairs’ Percent for Art program, and designed by the African-American artist Alison Saar. It was dedicated in 2008 at Harlem’s Harriet Tubman Triangle on 122nd Street. In her memorial sculpture, Saar chose to depict Tubman “not so much as a conductor of the Underground Railroad, but as a train itself, an unstoppable locomotive that worked towards improving the lives of slaves for most of her long life.” She told the Parks Department, “I wanted not merely to speak of her courage or illustrate her commitment, but to honor her compassion.”
Learn all about this statue