VOTE for 6sqft’s 2016 Building of the Year!

December 10, 2016

For new developments, 2015 was the year of reveals, but 2016 was all about watching these buildings reshape our city. Ahead we’ve narrowed a list of 12 news-making residential structures, each noted for their distinctive design, blockbuster prices, or their game-changing potential on the skyline or NYC neighborhoods.

Which of these you think deserves 6sqft’s title of 2016 Building of the Year? Have your say below. Polls for our third annual competition will be open up until 11:59 p.m., Sunday, December 11th*, and we will announce the winner on Tuesday, December 13th!


NYC starchitecture, 76 Eleventh Avenue, Bjarke Ingels, BIG Architecture, HFZ Capital, High Line towers, The Eleventh

76 11th Avenue
Bjarke Ingels joins the architectural creme de la creme of the High Line with his design of a pair of twisting travertine-and-bronze towers, recently christened “The Eleventh.” HFZ Capital Group tapped the architectural wunderkind in 2015, but it wasn’t until 2016 that details really started to materialize. The project is being planned as a “self contained kind of city” and is expected to include a 137-key luxury Six Senses hotel and spa, retail space, 260 luxury condos and two amenity-filled podium bridges that will connect the towers. Condos are expected to go for $3,800-$4,000 a square foot, while hotel rooms will average $900/night. Groundwork has already begun and completion is expected in 2018.

220 Central Park SOuth, Vornado, Robert A.M., Stern

220 Central Park South
220 Central Park South is being pegged as the next 15 Central Park West—and it’s no wonder; not only is it being designed by the same architect, Robert A.M. Stern, but its developer Vornado is sparing no expense, throwing down $5,000 per square foot to construct it. Celeb cred is also already building, even as the 950-foot tower continues its ascent (opening date, 2017). In August, Sting and wife Trudie (who already own a 5,413-square-foot penthouse in the aforementioned 15 CPW) were reportedly in negotiations to purchase a condo at the new tower—though not the $250 million penthouse, as far as we know. Plus, how can you deny a building’s “It” status when you’ve got not one, but two young daredevils risking their lives to capture the views offered at the pinnacle?

432 park, 432 park avenue, rafael vinoly, 432 park lighting design

432 Park
As far as closing go, 2016 has been the year of 432 Park. The tallest residential building in the Western Hemisphere nailed down the city’s priciest sale of the year when Saudi retail magnate Fawaz Al Hokair scooped up the penthouse for $87.7 million—not bad for a building with “a couple of screw-ups.” The Rafael Vinoly-designed tower also unveiled its amenity spaces this summer and a new lighting treatment just weeks ago. Its long list of superlatives inspired an imaginative, tongue-in-cheek redesign that turned the tower into a servant for city residents rather than a bunker for millionaires and billionaires—more on that here.

zaha hadid high line residence

520 West 28th Street
Sadly, the late Zaha Hadid will not see her first and only New York City project come to fruition, but her unique High Line building will ensure that her creative genius lives on in the city. Related Cos. tapped the starchitect in 2012 for design, skipping over names like Norman Foster for the work. Hadid delivered a design that incorporated her signature curves and a layout where each residence has been designed to reflect the limited edition nature of the units. In May, the triplex penthouse was listed for $50 million.

PS 281, JDS Development, 626 First Avenue, SHoP Architects, Twin Towers, NYC, Manhattan rentals, Solow, Turtle Bay, Murray Hill, rental developments, Con Ed, East River, LIC development

American Copper Buildings
Few rental towers have gotten as much buzz as JDS’s SHoP-designed American Copper Buildings at 626 First Avenue. The pair of East River-adjacent towers stand out not only for their shimmering copper facades, but more notably for the three-story, amenity-filled skybridge that joins them. The skybridge will hover 300 feet above the ground and include a “floating lap pool,” resident lounge, fitness center, boxing gym, squash court, children’s playroom, screening room, demo kitchen and dining area, and the marble Hammam with plunge pool. Unsurprisingly, when the building’s affordable housing lottery opened in August, tens of thousands scrambled to apply for one of the 160 apartments.

New York Skyscrapers, Extell Development, NYC Condos, Chinatown apartments

One Manhattan Square
Unlike anything built within the quiet, low-slung Lower East Side neighborhood before it, Extell’s One Manhattan Square has kicked up its fair share of controversy this year. The 800-plus-foot-tall mega-condo complex is sited at the foot of the Manhattan Bridge and is by far the tallest in the neighborhood. Replacing one of the few grocery stores around, it’s being developed as a luxury condo with an insane amenity package in a relatively low-income area. For better or worse, the tower is inspiring more massive developments like it and spurring major changes in the Two Bridges neighborhood.

GHWA, Pelli Clarke Pelli, Silverstein

One West End
The 42-story design by Pelli Clarke Pelli is the first to rise at Christian de Portzamparc’s masterfully planned Riverside Center, a project that has been in the works for decades. The tower topped off in February and notably added one million square feet to the neighborhood. In August, the affordable housing lottery launched for 116 below-market units, all of which are located in the building’s limestone podium, separate from the luxury units. Ultimately, One West End will be joined by four other glass towers, including those designed and recently unveiled by Kohn Pedersen Fox, Richard Meier, and Rafael Vinoly. The cluster will go by the name of Waterline Center.

Soori High Line, Siras Development, Oriel, SCDA Architects, West Chelsea condos

Soori High Line 
This new luxury addition designed by SDCA Architects and developed by Siras and Oriel is sited along the last leg of the High Line and is one of the most unique structures on the rise in the city—although the Soori High Line‘s “wow” factor comes not from its height or even its covetable location just steps from the elevated park, but rather the private indoor swimming pools 16 of its residents will be afforded— a number that will reportedly double the number of private swimming pools in all of Manhattan. The four-foot-deep, heated pools range in size from 23 to 26 feet long, and seven to nine feet wide. Ceiling heights are also nothing to scoff at, as 10-20 feet is the norm in the spaces. Such luxuries, however, never come cheap, as seen with the penthouse that just hit the market for $22.5 million.

30 park place penthouse

30 Park Place
Robert A.M. Stern’s Lower Manhattan limestone/cast-stone beauty commenced closings this year, proving that Stern is the architect to seek out if one wants to sell eight-figure units. The Silverstein Properties-developed tower rises 937 feet and is currently downtown’s tallest residential tower. 30 Park Place is also reportedly home to the highest outdoor living space in the city, a nice airy spread connected to a $30 million three-bedroom occupying the entire 82nd floor. As of August, more than 75 percent of the homes were in contract or had closed, and residents also started moving in during the summer. Still not on the market are the 11 half- and full-floor penthouses, but open is the Four Seasons Hotel on the lower 22 floors.

jean nouvel nyc 53w53

53 West 53rd Street
Jean Nouvel beautifully bucks the all-glass trend with 53W53, an out-of-the-box, and quite artistic rendition, of the modern skyscraper. Units in the MoMA-adjacent supertall hit the market in 2015, but the 1,050-foot-tall tower has really only started to take shape this year. When we last checked in on its progress in October, the building was getting the first application of its intricate, diagrid skin. Nouvel once said that the exterior treatment will resemble blood running through veins when the structure is lit up at night. Hines is the developer on this project.

56 leonard, jenga tower tribeca

56 Leonard 
Tribeca’s “Jenga tower” is certainly more than just a set of renderings these days. The building topped out in 2015, but 2016 gave way to the first handful of closings in the Herzog & de Meuron-designed, Alexico/Hines-developed luxury tower. As such, the stacked skyscraper found a place on the city’s list of 100 most expensive buildings with a $2,657 price per square foot average.

15 Hudson Yards, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Hudson Yards construction

15 Hudson Yards
This year marked the start of construction on the first residential building of the massive Hudson Yards undertaking by Related Companies and the Oxford Properties. Tower D at 15 Hudson Yards is a Diller Scofidio + Renfro and Rockwell Group design that has earned the moniker “Morph Tower” thanks to its “curvaceous and feminine design.” Upon completion the tower will soar 910 feet and house nearly 400 apartments ranging from a $3.7 million two-bedroom on the 25th floor to a $13.8 million penthouse on the 84th floor.

See 6sqft’s past Building of the Year finalists and winners

*This competition was launched Nov. 29, 2016

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  1. A

    Certainly none of this dozen. After all, they were built with all but
    unlimited financial resources, not that a great range and depth of talent
    wasn’t essential in building these monuments to greed. A much greater
    challenge is in building monuments to the other 1.6 million people who
    live in Manhattan, the ones whose median income is $64,217, mean income is
    $121,549, and poverty rate is 17.6%. How about some candidates relevant to that segment of the market?