A dozen supertalls (1,000 feet or higher) in the construction or planning stages in Manhattan include a significant number on the rise along the Billionaires’ Row strip just south of Central Park. This trend has been causing concern due to the shadows the looming towers will cast on the park.
Now, a slightly ominous time-lapse video from Cube Cities shows how Billionaires’ Row will have a sundial effect on the park (h/t Gothamist). The length and duration of the shadows will vary as the sun’s angle changes with the seasons; fall and winter days are looking dark, with the tall towers’ long shadows reaching as much as a mile into the park.
A group of concerned citizens from the area’s Community Board 5 formed the Central Park Sunshine Task Force to address the issue–which comes up every time a rendering is released for the latest supertall tower–and discuss how the tower will impede views for its neighbors and whether it will cast obstructive shadows below. The phenomenon is what the Municipal Arts Society calls the “Accidental Skyline,” a side-effect of planning the tall towers one by one rather than considering their effect on the city and the park overall.
As 6sqft previously explained, New York City currently has no restrictions on the shadows a tower may cast. In fact, the city doesn’t limit height, at all, it only limits FAR (floor area ratio); developers can buy air rights from adjacent buildings, allowing them to build even higher as of right–which will allow the Central Park Tower (formerly Nordstrom Tower) to reach a record height of 1,550 feet.
While there’s currently no solution on the horizon (no pun intended), architects at the London-based firm NBBJ have digitally designed a pair of “no-shadow skyscrapers” that would reduce the area of shade caused by the buildings.
- City Defends Supertalls, Won’t Limit Size of Midtown Towers
- Community Board Wants Moratorium Placed on Central Park Skyscrapers Taller than 600 Feet
- Central Park Sunshine Task Force Meets to Speak Out Against Supertall Shadows
Neighborhoods : Midtown