View Full Version : Far Lower West Side Boom

February 2nd, 2004, 11:22 AM
NY Metro

Down by the Riverside
World-class architects are bringing high design and higher prices to an industrial-strength swath along the Hudson, west of the Village and north of Tribeca. Is lower Manhattan ready for a megadose of Eurostyle?

By Deborah Schoeneman

On a recent icy morning, a stretch limo glided up Greenwich Street to No. 497, an eleven-story luxury condominium rising behind a dramatically rippled glass exterior—an anomaly among blocks of squat warehouses mitigated only by the occasional café and dive bar. Carlo Salvi, an Italian entrepreneur with wild black hair who owns, among other less glamorous and more profitable companies, half of the modeling agency that reps Naomi Campbell, emerged from the car, trailed by a middle-aged assistant. Salvi is thinking about adding another address to his collection of homes—he’s already staked out Miami, Lugano, and London—so he’s checking out the Greenwich Street Project, where Campbell, Jay-Z, and Isabella Rossellini have toured lofts, and artist Richard Tuttle, among more than a dozen others, recently closed a deal. “I am in New York for only two months a year, so I don’t need a terrace,” Salvi says, surveying the massive wraparound glass balconies of the $6.6 million, 3,600-square-foot penthouse duplex that will be delivered raw. He guesses out loud that it would cost him another $1 million before he’d be finished, especially if he plans to take his broker’s advice to build a central glass staircase like the one in Apple’s Soho store. “I don’t need it, but I’ll buy it if I find a good deal.” Through slanted floor-to-ceiling windows, the unobstructed views of the river and the freshly renovated stretch of the $400 million Hudson River Park below are spectacular, even if a winter storm has turned the landscape into an icy tundra.

There’s a real-estate revolution afoot on downtown’s Far West Side, and it’s a revolution from above. Salvi typifies a new breed of buyers being targeted by ambitious developers who are colonizing the Hudson River shoreline from the western edge of Soho north to the Far West Village. Speculators are betting that these high-end homesteaders will shell out millions for eye-catching architecture, picture-postcard sunsets, and such luxury amenities as resistance pools and guest apartments. The ideal buyer is not dissuaded by the fact that it’s all but impossible to hail a cab on these frigid, windy corners, since he’s likely to have a car and driver idling curbside, not to mention another home at the ready in gentler climes. There are no snobby co-op boards to impress. And let’s face it: The private chef may be the only one prowling the forbidding side streets in search of black truffles or aged Gouda.

The Greenwich Street Project, brainchild of British developer Jonathon Carroll and Dutch architect Winka Dubbeldam, is just the first stop on Salvi’s neighborhood tour. On the same block, the fourteen-story 505 Greenwich Street, which opened its sales office in early January, touts a list of 400 prospective buyers waiting to look at apartments. A dozen blocks north, buyers are moving into Richard Meier’s celebrated twin glass towers at 173 and 176 Perry Street, developed by Richard Born, or eagerly awaiting a third, even more luxurious Meier tower going up next door at 165 Charles Street for developers Izak Senbahar and Simon Elias, who are, like the others, asking $1,500 to $2,500 per square foot for their new digs.

A short walk from the Meier matrix is Morton Square, developer Jules Demchick’s sprawling compound of condos, townhouses, and lofts designed by Costas Kondylis, where buyers as disparate as artist Chuck Close and the teen television-and-tabloid stars Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen will be moving in. And the West Village land rush isn’t over, either: On January 15, the Related Companies (which brought us the Time Warner Center on Columbus Circle) signed a deal to develop high-rise condos on the site of the former Superior Printing Ink Company, a 33,000-square-foot lot about four blocks north of the Perry Street towers, at Bethune and West 12th Street. “It’s the last and best remaining site,” boasts Related’s 35-year-old golden-boy president, Jeff Blau.

The dream these developers and their world-class designers share is the total transformation of the lower West Side riverfront, an area that extends from 14th Street south to Canal Street and from Hudson Street west to the river. Until recently an industrial wasteland a little too far from the cobblestones and quaint townhouses of the West Village and Soho, the area has quickly become a status sphere replete with Park Avenue amenities—and Park Avenue sticker shock. What distinguishes the new buildings beyond their luxe accoutrements is their bold attack on the skyline, bringing airy, spacious, open residential design more typically associated with California and Europe to the banks of the Hudson.

The new condo coast owes its development in part to the Hudson River Park renaissance—Rollerblading! Trapeze school! Kayaking! Jogging trail! But it’s also a consequence of developers running out of commercial buildings to convert in Tribeca and Soho—and being unable, because of zoning, to go vertical in the meatpacking district. New buildings also lend themselves to high-tech amenities and luxury appointments (pet spa, anyone?). Embellish them with cutting-edge, brand-name architecture, and you’ve got catnip for the city’s restless buyers ever in search of the latest trophy home.

“You’re seeing a lot of your typical Upper East Side buyers moving downtown for something hipper, cooler, with better views and new modern buildings,” Blau says. “The people who are buying in this market are used to having their own drivers.”

And they’re willing to pay for parking garages, proximity to the West Side heliport, gyms with spas, and 24-hour concierges in brand-new buildings, rather than conversions of warehouses and factories like their Tribeca predecessors.

The neighborhoods into which they’re moving range from the yuppie-friendly Far West Village at the north end, adjacent to the quaint cafés and chic boutiques that line the narrow streets of the West Village, to gritty pre-gentrification West Soho at the south end, an area almost completely lacking in amenities.

Not surprisingly, current residents are somewhat ambivalent about the impending glamorization of the last stretch of viable real estate along the West Side Highway. High-rise development is allowable only because it’s outside the historic zone, which prompts West Villagers to worry that it will end up blocking the light and air—not to mention their river views.

“The major concern of locals,” adds Arthur Strickler, district manager of Community Board 2, which oversees the Far West Village, “is we don’t want to have our side of the Hudson River mirror the New Jersey side.”

If you’re looking for the man most responsible for luring the chauffeured set to Manhattan’s newest Gold Coast wannabe, look no further than Richard Meier. His name is the mantra uttered by downtown brokers and developers spinning the rationale for charging Central Park prices for Abingdon Square environs. When Richard Born broke ground three years ago on the matching Meier-designed glass towers at the river end of Perry Street’s windy corridor, Martha Stewart, Nicole Kidman, Calvin Klein, real-estate developer Scott Resnick, and Sun Microsystems co-founder William Joy were among the first to spend about $2,000 a square foot for raw space that included concrete floors, de rigueur wraparound floor-to-ceiling windows, and vertigo-inducing terraces. The only boldface name to have moved in so far is Rita Schrager, the former ballet dancer and ex-wife of hotelier Ian Schrager (though Boy From Oz star Hugh Jackman is renting there). But the condo board has already been elected: Resnick, Joy, Ian Schrager, and president Calvin Klein, who has almost finished his $14 million triplex.

Bordered by West Houston Street to the south, Hudson Street to the east, and West 14th Street to the north, the Far West Village—the northern end of the new Condo Coast—is only a few blocks from the area where Gwyneth Paltrow, Julianne Moore, and Anna Wintour live in nineteenth-century townhouses that have been protected by the Greenwich Village Historic District since 1969. It’s family-friendly, though the riverfront has yet to have a big family presence. Public School 3 and the Greenwich Village Middle School, both on Hudson Street, have some of the city’s highest test scores, and St. Luke’s School is also a desirable private-school option for the deep-pocketed buyer.

Of course, not everyone is convinced that the new development will mesh with the surrounding area. “It’s really a separate neighborhood, it’s so far west,” says hotelier Jeff Klein, who owns a West Village townhouse and midtown’s City Club Hotel. “Two years from now, when Nicole and all of them get out of there, the glamour will be deflated and it’s not going to be as expensive. It’s a very inconvenient area. It’s not a neighborhood, even though two blocks east is great.

“If you look at East End Avenue, that was created as an expensive enclave,” Klein continues, “but the prices per square foot are not as expensive as Fifth Avenue. The more central you are in the city, the better off you are.”

But the riverfront really is pretty central, especially if, like Kidman, you travel by Town Car and helicopter. It may seem like the end of the world—or at least like Jersey City—but there’s actually a dry cleaner and a parking garage on the same block as the Perry Street towers, which are just a few blocks from established shops like Magnolia Bakery, home of the city’s most celebrated cupcake, and around the corner from Wallsé, one of the area’s top-rated restaurants.

“All the old West Village people, like Lou Reed, Julian Schnabel, and Laurie Anderson, come in here, and I hear stories about before that are much different from what I see now,” says Kurt Gutenbrunner, Wallsé’s Austrian chef-owner. “Look at the traffic! When I came here in 2000, I never would have thought Jean-Georges would be down the street, and now he’ll be in the Meier building. I’m not so lonely here anymore.”

Soon he’ll also be joined by the all-star team renovating Le Zoo, at 314 West 11th Street (about three blocks from the Perry Street towers). Mario Batali and Bono are among the backers of the new restaurant, slated to reopen by next spring with chef April Bloomfield, formerly of London’s River Cafe, a posh Italian restaurant.

"You're seeing a lot of your typical Upper East Side buyers moving downtown for something hipper, cooler, with better views."

The dearth of shops and services isn’t the neighborhood’s only obstacle. The Perry Street towers do look lonely from the street, as only a handful of buyers have finished the raw apartments they purchased, and just one, on the second floor of the south tower, has installed the white shades on the floor-to-ceiling windows that are the only allowable treatments to provide privacy. The Rear Window effect already has some buyers backing out of the building. “It’s not very private,” complains one uptown socialite whose new husband bought a Meier loft before they were engaged and has since put it on the market for $2.75 million. “It’s gorgeous, but it’s more of a bachelor pad.”

Brokers—at least those who haven’t scored commissions in the towers—claim that selling unfinished apartments is a mistake, and 30 percent of the original buyers are trying to flip the Perry Street lofts, with unforeseen difficulty. Born counters that only 5 of 23 units are being flipped, and he doesn’t regret choosing to sell the spaces raw. “Very high-end users want to create their own environment, and whatever I would give them would probably not be what they want,” he says. Martha Stewart’s $6 million, 3,000-square-foot duplex sat on the market for more than a year before finally selling last week, and actor Vincent Gallo recently spent $1.6 million for a loft that the previous owner bought for $2 million—and just sold it since he doesn’t want to live next to a construction site.

The third Meier-designed tower will be unveiled next spring, complete with a 35-seat screening room, a 50-foot lap pool, and a ground-level art gallery. Unlike the Perry Street buildings, there will be two apartments per floor, rather than one. The new sixteen-story tower will have 31 apartments, priced at about $2,500 per square foot. Meier is designing everything from the shower curtains to the kitchen sink.

Meier and Senbahar agreed on “an evolution from the Perry Street towers,” Senbahar says, and in deciding to let Meier finish the interior space, the developer is betting he’ll be able to charge up to 50 percent more than the Perry Street prices: “I’ve always believed that the finished product in New York City is a better product, because construction is a tough business.” Prices will start at $4 million and cap at $20 million for the 5,000-square-foot penthouse with 24-foot-high ceilings.

Senbahar closely resembles Morton Square’s architect, Costas Kondylis (who has also designed most of Donald Trump’s condo towers), and somehow it’s hardly surprising that they’re close friends who vacationed together over New Year’s in St. Bart’s. Both are born-to-the-manner Eastern Europeans, but while Senbahar is aiming for the high-end buyer, Kondylis and Morton Square’s developer, Jules Demchick of J. D. Carlisle Development Corporation, have created a compound suitable for middle-to-upper-class residents.

Just a few blocks south of the Meier towers, Morton Square stretches from West Street to Washington Street, with rounded corners that evoke an ocean liner nestled next to the venerable townhouses and shops that line Barrow and Hudson streets. It’s also barely a block from the Archive, a redbrick Romanesque Revival building, constructed in the 1890s as a warehouse for federal archives, that was converted about ten years ago into luxury apartments—complete with a DÂ’Agostino supermarket, a Crunch gym, a dry cleaner, and paparazzi-hounded tenants including Monica Lewinsky.

“Ours is a whole city block,” says Kondylis, who also designed 285 Lafayette Street four years ago, then a pioneering building and still home to such original buyers as David Bowie and Iman. “We took an urbanistic approach. What makes great urbanistic designs is to be contextual. We didn’t just want to drop objects on the site like Meier did.” Which is not to say that Kondylis doesn’t admire Meier’s design: “The standard is now set,” he declares. Kondylis used Meier’s aesthetic for inspiration, as well as the rounded corners of Chelsea’s massive Starrett-Lehigh building, home to the Martha Stewart Omnimedia mother ship.

But Kondylis didn’t copy Meier, much to his developer’s relief. The façade is composed of just 65 percent glass, and the apartments are delivered finished. “We learned from Meier’s mistakes,” says Demchick, who sports a gold pinkie ring. “We’re trying to create substance and security. Floor-to-ceiling windows are not a secure feeling.”

Brokers list Naomi Watts, Stanley Tucci, and Ally Sheedy among the celebrities who have toured the property more than once, and say that Sheedy is moving in, joining the Olsen twins, who bought a $3.5 million condo in lieu of shacking up in a Greenwich Village dorm next fall, when they plan to attend NYU.

Built on a former United Parcel Service parking lot, the development near the north end of West Street includes a fourteen-story condo tower and six townhouses with loft apartments. They’re slated to be ready by next fall. Morton Square’s sales office opened last summer, and about 62 percent of the units, ranging in size from 1,160 to 4,000 square feet, are said to have sold for $1.1 million to $4.25 million.

With its bicycle room and 24-hour valet staff, Morton Square feels more Upper West Side than West Village—which is precisely why artist Chuck Close and his wife Leslie decided to move there from Central Park West. They liked the underground parking garage, since he’s confined to a wheelchair and uses a van for transportation. But to draw buyers like Close, the creative-minded people whom the Far West Village developers are targeting, Morton Square’s developers also commissioned a lobby installation from trendy glass sculptor Tom Patti and plan to add jazzy features like handprint-recognition technology instead of keys to gain entry to the garage.

They also built West Village–style townhouses and downtown-type lofts for people wanting a Tribeca feel—which seems to be working. Andrew Marcus, a 34-year-old single chiropractor, recently bought a $1.85 million, two-bedroom condo. The river views were a major selling point, drawing him from an apartment he owns in Murray Hill. “You can’t beat being on the water,” says Marcus. “Morton Square is unobstructed. Every night you see the sunset over Jersey City. And I don’t think there’s any better place to be than the West Village, for the downtown nightlife and restaurants.”

The most isolated part of the Condo Coast is the southern extremity: The Greenwich Street Project and 505 Greenwich—just two blocks east of the West Side Highway and one block from UPS’s not-exactly-eye-candy loading docks and parking lots—are pioneers in a primarily commercial area that optimistic developers and brokers have dubbed West Soho or Hudson Square. Young hipsters pack nightlife mainstays like the Ear Inn, Sway, and Don Hill’s, but there is no bakery, shoe-repair shop, or pharmacy within winter walking distance.

Around the corner from the new towers, the Vendome Group is planning a Philip Johnson–designed tower at 328 Spring Street to replace an earlier proposal that was rejected a few years ago by the Board of Standards and Appeals for being too tall.

The Jack Parker Corporation is also building a rental property on Spring Street. And Peter Moore Associates, an architecture-and-development firm, is working on two eight-story condo towers in West Soho that should break ground next fall on Spring Street and Renwick Street and on Washington Street and Canal. Prices figure to average about $900 per square foot and apartments will feature river views. “I think it’s great that developers recognize that good architecture adds value,” says Moore. “It’s better than all this stuff that looks like Battery Park City. I’m excited about what’s going on down here.”

Across from 505 Greenwich’s elaborate sales office on Spring Street is Giorgione, owned by Giorgio DeLuca (of Dean & Deluca). Sources say neighborhood resident DeLuca is now negotiating to take over the restaurant down the block, formerly known as Spring Street (and before that, Theo), between Greenwich and Washington streets—and to transform it into a restaurant and maybe a gourmet market for all the new high-end residents.

Deluca’s timing may prove better than that of his predecessor Jonathan Morr. The BondSt restaurateur had shown the foresight to shoot for three stars in West Soho with Theo—a well-received restaurant that nonetheless failed—but it turned out to be three years too early, even after its reincarnation as the truffle-heavy 325 Spring Street. “It was meant to be an up-and-coming neighborhood, but it was very, very difficult to get people down there,” says Morr. “It was like going to a different state. But the neighborhood is going to boom because of all these new buildings.”

Jane Gladstein of Metropolitan Housing Partners (Soho 25, the Sycamore), which is developing 505 Greenwich Street with financing from Apollo Real Estate, makes the lobby and courtyard planned for 505 Greenwich sound more like a New Age spa than a condo tower: Architect Gary Handel & Associates’ design features river rock, black bamboo, burnished copper, and Jerusalem limestone. The apartments will be delivered finished, with the obligatory Sub-Zero and Viking appliances, a wine cooler, ten-foot-high ceilings, and a flat-screen color-monitor security system. Prices will range from $770,000 for a 725-square-foot one-bedroom apartment to $3.5 million for a 2,500-square-foot three-bedroom penthouse.

Denise Levine, 48, and her 51-year-old husband, Jay, who both work for Con Edison, recently bought a 1,000-square-foot apartment after renting for four years in Battery Park City, where they liked living by the Hudson River.

“We love lower Manhattan, and here is a building that’s really in the middle of everything,” Denise says. “And I like the idea of a relatively youthful neighborhood. There are also nice restaurants in the area and convenient transportation. I wouldn’t say great, but convenient transportation.” The Levines even like the idea that another building is going up next door and that other condo towers are being built nearby, on the waterfront. “I think there will be more services soon in the neighborhood, more restaurants and delis. And everyone has FreshDirect now, so there’s no need for a supermarket.”

Meanwhile, 37-year-old Jonathon Carroll chose not to have a sales office at all for his Greenwich Street Project. The hip Brit, who made a pile of cash as an investment banker in London, wants to spend his money creating something artistic. With a slight resemblance to actor Paul Rudd, he looks the part of the artsy kid in the pack of silver-haired suits. This is his first development project since hiring Winka Dubbeldam in ’97 to design his massive three-bedroom loft at 50 Wooster Street (also home to Claire Danes and Donna Karan). The loft—which has been featured in photo shoots with Lauren Bush for Town & Country, a Law & Order episode, and a Lenny Kravitz album cover—doubles as his office and features a model of the new building and a sample window in the middle of his living room.

But Carroll’s probably going to sell it and move into the Greenwich Street Project’s penthouse—now that Salvi and Jay-Z have passed.

The building’s 23 units range in price from $2 million for a 2,800-square-foot loft to $6.6 million for the 3,600-square-foot penthouse with its 1,700 square feet of outdoor space. There are two elevators, a gym with a sauna and infinity pool, and a shared courtyard. Though three young families have bought lofts, most buyers, says Carroll, either have grown children or none, like Tom Schaller, a 52-year-old architect who recently bought a 2,800-square-foot loft he hopes to move into this summer, after he’s fitted it out with a massive bedroom and a guest room–art studio. He’s a fan of Dubbeldam’s and wanted to live in a building with what he deemed “real architecture.”

Schaller doesn’t expect any inconveniences or lack of amenities. “It’s not as if I’m moving to Nepal,” he says. “There are a lot of things around. But if I had kids, I might worry about it.”

Carroll says he’s sold about 70 percent of the lofts and doesn’t regret delivering them raw, even though other developers and brokers claim it’s made for slow sales.

“It’s always surprised me that New York is the most heterogeneous city there is, but in terms of where people live, it’s the opposite,” says Carroll, who likes to wear his olive-green raver sunglasses inside the apartment and says he only ventures above 14th Street to shop. “I didn’t want to make decisions on interiors for other people.” Call him earnest or disingenuous, but he also insists that money doesn’t matter. “The apartments are selling,” he says.

“We will be sold out in the next two months.” And he believes luxury buyers want to design their own homes: “People buying more than $3 million apartments want to do it their own way.”

When Carroll first bought the former food-storage lot that would become the Greenwich Street project in 2000, 505 Greenwich had not yet been planned and he hadn’t heard anything about the Meier towers. “People thought I was insane,” he says. “There was nothing there.” Frankly, he wouldn’t have minded if it had stayed that way, especially when the simultaneous construction of the adjacent buildings led to some inevitable complications—broken glass, ensuing catfights—that no one wants to talk about, at least on the record. “I would prefer if 505 weren’t there,” he admits on a recent afternoon, wearing designer army pants from Bergdorf’s. “But I knew something would go up there.”

Although Dubbeldam, who moved to New York in 1990 from the Netherlands to attend Columbia’s architecture school, has designed commercial spaces (notably the now-defunct Gear magazine’s fabulous offices), this is her first residential apartment building. The wavy-glass-curtain wall was a choice that reflects an obsession with both form and function: “I wanted the façade to have more interface with the city,” she says. (The other reason was that, at the time Carroll and Dubbeldam applied for the permits, the city’s building code mandated that a new tower had to have an incline after 85 feet in height. But the code changed between the two buildings’ ground-breakings, so 505 Greenwich is taller and straight. “It’s not fair, is it?” Dubbeldam carps.)

Dubbeldam is also moving from a Soho rental into the building this spring, and three buyers have asked her to design their raw lofts. “I love the new neighborhood,” says Dubbeldam, who found the spot for Carroll after they had unsuccessfully scoured Williamsburg, Dumbo, and the Lower East Side.

“It’s on the edge of everything, but it’s not a hot spot yet. It’s a nice, calm environment, and I can go running on the river.”

While some established area residents may resist having the Marc Jacobs set move in, the high-end developments are indisputably good news for area’s struggling small-business owners. To Javier Ortega, chef-owner of Pintxos, a tiny Basque restaurant right across the street from the two new buildings on Greenwich, the future tenants may as well be free gold. Five years ago, he came from Guatemala and opened the restaurant—but while the place fills up on weekends, he has yet to pack a crowd for a $35 dinner, including wine. Next door is Pao!, a popular Portuguese restaurant that was nevertheless almost empty at lunchtime one recent afternoon.

“Now people are coming in, filling three or four tables and looking across the street and saying, ‘Maybe I’ll become a regular customer,’ ” says Ortega. “This is very good for people like me.”

Can the new upscale owners blend into the neighborhood and, ultimately, bring growth to such an out-of-the-way area? “When I came here nine years ago, people said, ‘You’re going to die.’ Now there are five or six restaurants on the block,” says Don Hill’s eponymous owner, whose popular nightclub is adjacent to 505 Greenwich Street. “But I still don’t think families are going to move into the neighborhood. Whether the edgy artists are going to be able to come out of here, where the rent’s going to be so high, is another story. Rock artists are going to be trust-fund babies.”

Strickler also doubts the waterfront-construction boom will abate anytime soon. “It’s the wave of the future,” he notes. “Ninety percent of the warehouses are all converted already. The only thing left is the empty lots.”

What developers can do is make sure the buildings add stature to the skyline. “For the first time in New York, we finally have a real chance to show off some world-class architecture on our riverfront,” adds Related’s Blau. “It’s up to the developers to keep the bar raised high.”

Here's a completed Meier apartment: http://www.nymetro.com/nymetro/shopping/homedesign/features/n_9810/

February 3rd, 2004, 04:32 PM
:shock: Wow! That is a long article...is it finish yet? Is this a record of the longest articles ever posted?

February 13th, 2004, 01:30 PM
A new 13 story residence is going up on Laight and West St. Taken on 2/13/04:


February 14th, 2004, 01:27 AM
Any renderings? This area is booming. It's about time.

February 26th, 2004, 02:38 AM
Gottlieb gets in on river rush

By Lincoln Anderson

The former Keller Hotel at West and Barrow Sts. is being remodeled into 20, presumably luxury, apartments.

It’s an old empty hotel and something secret is going on inside.

No, it’s not the Bates Hotel.

It’s the Keller Hotel on the Greenwich Village waterfront. The building has been vacant for the last 10 to 15 years, but construction workers have recently been renovating inside in what to neighbors appears to be a clandestine manner.

“The hotel is being remodeled, being rebuilt — very surreptitiously,” said Peggy Lewis, who lives on Barrow St. in the West Village Houses.

Lewis, director of Biz Kids, Inc., an acting school for youth on Pier 40, said workers have punched a hole through the wall between the hotel and an adjacent empty garage, where they are loading debris into a dumpster, which is carted away full each morning.

“One day they had a cherry picker on a flatbed truck loading sheetrock into the second- and third-floor windows,” Lewis added. “Friday, I saw them lifting what looked like plywood to the second and third floors.”

Lewis said she noticed the hole to the garage one morning when the garage door was left open. She guessed the secretiveness may be because the workers appear to be nonunion. When unions discover nonunion construction sites, they tend to show up with a large inflatable rubber rat and picket loudly.

According to Department of Buildings records, an alteration permit for “interior demoliton of nonbearing partitions and plumbing” was obtained for 150 Barrow St. by the Estate of William Gottlieb on Jan. 27. The contractor was listed as Mollie Bender.

“That would be a gut interior renovation,” explained Ilyse Fink, a D.O.B. spokesperson.

On Feb. 12, a permit was granted by Buildings for “related general construction and plumbing work [to] convert existing building to class A apartments.” “Class A” means a regular apartment with a bathroom and kitchen, as opposed to a single-room-occupancy hotel room. The use is listed as residential and the number of apartments as 20. The site’s zoning is commercial, C6-2, which allows residential use.

The necessary work permits are posted on the hotel’s front door, the windows of which are covered with old newspapers so nothing can be seen inside.

Located at Barrow and West Sts., the stately, yet derelict, six-story building and adjacent, nondescript garage are owned by the Gottlieb real estate company. Before he died in 1999, William Gottlieb assembled an empire of small Village properties, today worth millions, including 75 properties in Greenwich Village and the Meat Market. He left the company to his sister, Mollie Bender, cutting his estranged brother, Arnold, out of his will. Arnold fought unsuccessfully to get part of the holdings, a struggle that saw the two sides come to blows in the company’s Hudson St. office.

William Gottlieb was known to never sell his properties nor invest more than the minimum in them, a tradition his sister has, until now, apparently upheld. So the fact that major work is going on in the Keller Hotel leads some observers to conclude that the property must have been sold.

“Somebody’s doing work in there. And it’s unlikely that Gottlieb would be doing such massive renovations,” said Zack Winestine, co-chairperson of the Greenwich Village Community Task Force. Like Lewis, Winestine said people have noticed the hole punched in the wall between the hotel and garage and the dumpster that is being used.

At Bailey-Holt House, an AIDS residence around the corner at Christopher and West Sts., two staff members recently said they believed the building had been purchased, even though, as one of them noted, everyone knows “Gottlieb never sells.”

“I seen some people come to look at it over a year ago,” said one staff member, asking that his name not be used. He said he thought that the same people who had purchased a small building, 178 Christopher St., next to Bailey-Holt House had also bought the Keller.

However, Millennium Homes, LLC, which purchased 178 Christopher St. from prominent developer Philip Pilevsky, said they have nothing to do with the Keller and don’t know anything about it.

A spokesperson said Bailey-Holt House’s president, Regina R. Quattrochi, had no information about the old hotel.

Several calls to the Gottlieb office asking if the building had been sold were not returned.

However, signs seem to indicate that the Gottlieb company is ready to cash in on what developers are calling the new “Condo Coast,” the rapidly transforming historic Village waterfront, where designer buildings are sprouting up like weeds and whole block fronts are being scooped up by developers — like Related Companies’ recent deal to buy the Superior Ink factory at West and Bethune Sts.

Lewis said she recently walked by another long-vacant Gottlieb property, the Northern Dispensary on Waverly Pl., and noticed people “meeting” inside.

“I said, ‘Maybe the Gottliebs are finally starting to do something with their properties,’ ” she said she thought to herself.

Department of Finance records don’t show the hotel having changed hands. However, on Jan. 28 there was a filing for an easement, which Rob Roman, a Department of Finance spokesperson, said could have been, for example, to allow Con Ed workers to set up a work space inside and have access to the building on a regular basis. Bob Perl, a Village real estate broker, said an easement can also mean creating a connection or passage between two properties or through a property; perhaps the hole through the wall to the garage?

According to “Maritime Mile: The Story of the Greenwich Village Waterfront,” by Stuart Waldman (with photographs by Winestine), the Keller, built in 1898, was one of the West St. seamen’s hotels that thrived in the late 1800s and early 1900s. It was designed by architect Julius Munckwitz.

In its latter days the Keller was a single-room-occupancy hotel and at one point was also a “welfare hotel,” where the city housed the indigent. The Keller Bar, in the hotel’s ground floor on West St., was considered a nuisance by neighbors.

Michael Bordonaro, 21, born and raised in the West Village Houses, a middle-income Mitchell-Lama development across the street from the hotel, recalled, “The bar was pretty sleazy. I don’t know what kind of people stayed upstairs — but there were lots of drugs upstairs.”

Tim Duffy, a Sixth Precinct community affairs officer who used to patrol Christopher St., said, “The issue with the Keller Hotel was the bar. There were crowds that would go in and out. It was over by the West Side Highway, so there were just more people. It was less residential.”

But with former socialist press buildings and ink factories giving way to designer residences the tide has turned and the waterfront is now becoming residential. Not merely residential, but like the new upscale apartments planned for the grungy old Keller — “class A,” as in “Condo Coast,” residential.

May 27th, 2004, 01:36 AM

Anti-development protesters build their case at City Hall

By Lincoln Anderson

Villager photos by Elisabeth Robert

Undaunted by humid, 90-degree weather plus a half-hour wait to go through a security check, 150 Villagers rallied near the steps of City Hall last Sunday to demand a stop to the overdevelopment of the Far West Village and waterfront.

“We’re here today because we know that our neighborhood is under threat and if we don’t act quickly our neighborhood will be history,” said Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation.

While the effects of the recent building boom are plainly visible along the waterfront — the Richard Meier towers at Perry St. and Morton Square at Morton St. — Berman said now developers are moving inland along the sidestreets, ready to eat up historic low-scale buildings. He said 163 Charles St., right behind one of the new Meier towers, has been sold and is already slated for demolition.

Leading Sunday’s rally against overdevelopment were Andrew Berman, director of G.V.S.H.P., holding a sign of Morton Square, left, and State Senator Tom Duane, next to sign of Charles St. townhouse slated for development.

Berman said they’ve sent a letter to the Landmarks Preservation Commission requesting immediate designation of the building as a landmark to preserve it from demolition.

Berman added that there are 20 buildings in the unprotected area that date from the early 19th century and 35 dating from the late 19th century.

“The commissioners at Landmarks know what these buildings are — they’re historic and they should be preserved,” said Berman.

However, he said there are some encouraging signs in that the city is willing to sit down and look at the area’s zoning.

Barbara Chacour, a resident of Charles St. for 25 years, bemoaned the construction of the luxury Meier towers, specifically the one on her side of the street.

“I avoid looking at it even though I am told Hugh Jackman has the apartment across from me. I’m sure he enjoys his view of the river,” she said. Chacour added that the foundations are being tested at a warehouse across the street from her to see if a high-rise can be built on top.

“I don’t want my building to be a relic, like P.J. Clarke’s, with no light, no air,” she said, referring to the East Side bar that famously rebuffed a developer’s purchase offers.

Stu Waldman, of the Federation to Save the Waterfront, said the Village waterfront is an historic treasure for the whole city.

“We were built from the water out,” he said. “Our neighborhood is the last large maritime neighborhood in the city that exists the way it did a century ago. What they are doing is destroying not just Greenwich Village, but a part of New York City history.”

“We’ll be back! We’ll be back!” the Villagers chanted, vowing to keep returning until their neighborhood is protected from the wrecking ball.

During the rally they were heckled by Dave Doctor, a young Libertarian from the Lower East Side, who objects to restraints on property owners’ rights. Using an electric bullhorn — he specifically got a sound permit ahead of time — he shouted, “Berman — go home!” and held up a series of signs, such as “No More Historic Dictatorships” and “Free the West Village.”

“Creep!” the Villagers shouted back at him.

May 27th, 2004, 12:09 PM
During the rally they were heckled by Dave Doctor, a young Libertarian from the Lower East Side, who objects to restraints on property owners’ rights. Using an electric bullhorn — he specifically got a sound permit ahead of time — he shouted, “Berman — go home!” and held up a series of signs, such as “No More Historic Dictatorships” and “Free the West Village.”

“Creep!” the Villagers shouted back at him.

:lol: This so funny!

~only in NYC people

May 27th, 2004, 12:32 PM
Isn't he the man who posted here?

May 27th, 2004, 03:32 PM
I have not idea...:o

But he is sure a funny character.

February 25th, 2005, 06:13 PM
Publication:The New York Sun; Date:Feb 25, 2005; Section:Front page; Page:1


Luxury High-Rise Planned for Bethune Street ‘Gold Coast’

By JULIE SATOW Staff Reporter of the Sun

The Related Companies has filed plans with the city’s Department of Buildings to construct the tallest tower on “the Gold Coast,” the stretch of Greenwich Village waterfront that is fast becoming known as the location of some of New York’s most exclusive residences.

To make way for a 20-story high-rise, the Superior Ink factory at 70 Bethune St.,which was a Nabisco cracker bakery when it opened in 1919, would be destroyed. That has raised the ire of preservationists who are fighting to get the neighborhood designated a historic district and prevent the demolition of the area’s noteworthy buildings.

“The proposed building is completely inappropriate for this site,and we absolutely intend to fight it, and fight hard,” the executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, Andrew Berman, said.

According to the filing, the building would reach 225 feet. That is 15 feet taller than the next-highest building, the Richard Meier glass towers at Perry and Charles streets.

The firm behind the Related Companies’ asymmetrical glass Astor Place Tower on Lafayette Street, Gwathmey Siegel Associates, will design the new building. A source familiar with its design said the new construction would look “not dissimilar to the Astor Place building, except with a six- to seven-story base instead of a two-story base.” The amoeba-shaped tower would face the West Side Highway, with views overlooking the Hudson River and townhouses built along Bethune.

Superior Printing Inks, the company that owns the factory, sold the building to the Related Companies in a private deal. The printing company, which has two other factories in the New York metropolitan region, at Long Island and at New Jersey, did not return calls.

The still-operating factory on Bethune Street, with its twin, 100-foot smokestacks in working order since the bakery opened when Woodrow Wilson was president, had been part of a broader complex of Nabisco buildings now known as the Chelsea Market.

The Related Companies had no comment, but sources familiar with the project told The New York Sun the developer has been meeting with officials at the Department of City Planning about a possible rezoning. The site is zoned for manufacturing and would need to be rezoned for residential.

Mr. Berman said his group would battle any zoning change. “This is not new for us,” he said.“We’ve been around this block before and we’ve been successful.”

To build the 104-unit high rise, Related would also need a larger floor-area ratio than the zoning now allows. The Superior Ink factory site, which has a floor area of 32,210 square feet, has a FAR of 1.76, which would allow the construction of a building of roughly 56,600 square feet. The building the Related Companies has proposed would be 216,899 square feet, requiring a FAR closer to seven. That could be achieved only through a rezoning or a variance.

It is unlikely the developer is pursuing a variance, because Related officials have not met with the Board of Standards and Appeals to discuss the matter, according to an official who works at the board and requested anonymity. The board is the body that approves variances.

“With such a large project, it is also more difficult to get a variance than a zoning change,” the official said.

The City Council and Department of City Planning must approve a rezoning, but for a variance the board requires that an applicant prove the project is the “minimum variance necessary,” or the smallest change that is needed to make a reasonable return on the property.

“The assertion that a 20-story, 225-foot, super-luxury residential tower is the minimum necessary for Related to turn a profit on this site is, on its face, ludicrous,” Mr. Berman said.

This is the latest battle in a war pitting the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation against residents and developers who are looking to take advantage of what has become one of the toniest areas in downtown. The artists Julian Schnabel, Kenny Schachter, and Annie Leibovitz have locked horns with the group when trying to sell or change the historic characters of buildings they owned.

In a bid to protect the area from development, preservationists have submitted a proposal to the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission to designate a historic district in the area bounded by Gansevoort Market to the north, the printing house and warehouse district to the south, the Hudson River waterfront to the west, and Greenwich Village to the east.

A spokeswoman for Landmarks, Diane Jackier, said yesterday the staff was still studying the proposal.

According to the proposal, 100 significant buildings are in the district, and they consider several to be in danger of destruction. Those include 303 W. 10th St., purchased by Lehman Brothers, and 383 and 387 W. 12th St., which the designer Diane von Furstenberg sold to the Russian heiress Anna Anismova.

“Related should be prepared because they are going to have a big fight on their hands,” Mr. Berman said.

February 25th, 2005, 09:47 PM
Billy, are you getting my PMS?

TLOZ Link5
February 25th, 2005, 10:38 PM
Billy, are you getting my PMS?


February 25th, 2005, 10:44 PM
??? Tloz?

February 26th, 2005, 01:27 AM
??? Tloz?


March 12th, 2005, 10:20 PM
For some reason I can't find the article mentioning this (it;s here somewhere), but Hudson Blue now has a rendering:



March 12th, 2005, 11:00 PM
Looks nice. It was mentioned in the random NYC Celebrities Real Estate thread so it's in its rightful home now.

May 6th, 2005, 02:44 PM
70 Bethune Street/Superior Ink Plant Project
58-70 Bethune Street/469-485 West Street
20 stories 225/270 feet
Gwathmey Siegel Architects
Dev-Related Companies
Residential Condominiums
104 units 216,899 Sq. Ft.
Proposed 2007?


The Villager
Super-sizing is unhealthy for Village’s waterfront
By Andrew Berman


Here’s a question: How can Related Companies — developers of the enormous AOL Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle, who, according to their own promotional materials, have a property portfolio worth over $10 billion — be suffering an economic hardship trying to develop a piece of our waterfront? While the assertion flies in the face of basic logic, this is exactly what Related is claiming, and how they may well “super-size” not only this development, but potentially our entire waterfront.

Related is seeking a variance, or special exemption from the existing zoning, to build a 270-foot-tall, mixed-use and residential tower on the site of the Superior Ink factory. This development would necessitate the destruction of a historic building that the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation and many in the community have proposed be part of a historic district in the Far West Village. It was built in 1919 by Nabisco as a cracker bakery, once part of the vast Nabisco holdings in this area that included what is now Chelsea Market. Additionally, the development itself would be by far the tallest and largest building on the Greenwich Village waterfront — the Meier Towers, currently the largest, are 210 feet tall.

To get this variance from the city’s Board of Standards and Appeals, Related is arguing that it is a “hardship” to develop this site because certain “unique” circumstances make it very difficult to build there. Related cites two factors as being the primary reasons for their hardship — the fact that the bedrock on this site is deep below the surface, increasing the expense of driving piles for new construction, and that being within something called the “100-year flood plain” (the area likely to experience a flood within a century) requires expensive extra precautions in their new construction. Related claims that there is no way they could turn a reasonable profit on this site under the existing zoning, so they must be allowed to build larger than normally permitted, and to include uses which the current zoning prohibits.

But when you really look at their hardship argument, you find that their criteria would apply to virtually any site on our waterfront. Our entire waterfront is within what is considered the 100-year flood plain (anything within one block of the water is), and almost all our waterfront is built on landfill with the bedrock well below the surface. Based on the price of the land and the construction costs these “hardship” circumstances create, Related says they cannot make a reasonable profit. But here again, according to Related’s own promotional materials, their vast holdings portfolio “[sets] us apart from most of our competitors and creates a substantial purchasing and negotiating leverage…our construction costs are lowered and we are able to manage our operating costs more efficiently.” So if this is a hardship for them, imagine how much of a hardship it would be for someone with lesser holdings, less leverage and lesser ability to keep construction and operating costs down.

Should Related succeed, we will not only have an enormous new eyesore, but we will have effectively established the precedent that the mere fact of building along the waterfront is a “hardship,” requiring exemptions from existing zoning limitations to allow developments of even larger scale. Given the dizzying prices waterfront developments are fetching, this “Alice in Wonderland” logic might seem amusing were it not so real, and the resources Related pouring into this battle not so great.

Believe it or not, Related is also arguing for their variance by citing expected sales prices for this development that are about half of what apartments in the Meier towers and Morton Square are going for, thus padding their “hardship” claim. Don’t be surprised — when Related applied for a variance to develop what ultimately became Morton Square, the prices they projected for sales from that development — and the basis for their “hardship” claim there — were also only about half of what they ultimately got.

Related knows that the city is currently considering G.V.S.H.P.’s request to rezone the Far West Village to limit the height and bulk of new development and to enact landmark protections to preserve the area’s historic buildings. Related’s variance gambit is an attempt to short-circuit that process, and to get permission to “super-size” their development on this site.

Given the ever-increasing wave of planned and contemplated new development in the Far West Village, stopping Related from getting their variance is key to ensuring that “super-sized” does not become the norm along our waterfront. Should they succeed, other developers will be encouraged and assisted to seek and secure variances for larger development based on the supposed “hardship” of developing waterfront property. Given the likelihood of development at the huge Whitehall Storage site at 150-160 Charles St./303 W. 10th St., as well as more than a half dozen other nearby locations, this could not be more critical. We must send a message to the city that this sham effort by which the city’s richest developer seeks to claim “hardship” is unacceptable, and that the rezoning and landmark protections we have been promised must be enacted right away.

There are two ways you can do this: Come to the March to Save the Far West Village on Sat., May 14, beginning at 12:30 p.m. at W. 12th and West Sts.; and write to the city demanding they move ahead right away with the measures to preserve our neighborhood that we have proposed. Sample letters can be accessed at www.gvshp.org/FWVletters.htm. For more information, contact G.V.S.H.P. at 212-475-9585 or www.gvshp.org.

Berman is executive director, Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation

Because a building made a few crackers and was built 85 years ago doesn't make it a historic landmark. Inevitably, Related will put something up, why not be fruitful and imput what you would feel is a fitting design. Just saying no to everything all the time obviously isn't getting them anywhere.

May 6th, 2005, 06:00 PM
303 West 10th Street
287-303 West 10th Street/150-170 Charles Street
17 stories
Cook+Fox Architects
Dev-Witkoff Group
250,000-290,000 sq. ft.

The warehouse at 303 W. 10th St. is slated to become a 17-story condo complex.

The Villager
Charles St. developer says he won’t go for the max
By Lincoln Anderson


West Village antidevelopment watchdogs are keeping anxious watch on two building sites — one of which is being dubbed a potential “neutron bomb” that if developed with a huge tower, could explode the neighborhood’s historic fabric.

The two sites are the Perry Garage, just east of the middle tower of the three new Richard Meier-designed towers on the waterfront, and, a few blocks to the south, the Whitehall Storage warehouse, midblock between West and Washington Sts. between Charles and 10th Sts.

Parkers at the Perry Garage were recently notified it would close in two months, then the closing date was pushed up to last Saturday, when the garage was emptied of cars. The owners of the seven-story building, reportedly a former horse stable, are Richard Born and Ira Drukier — who developed the first two Meier condo towers — along with other investors.

Meanwhile, the four-story Whitehall warehouse was purchased a year ago by the Witkoff Group and Lehman Brothers. The team of Witkoff and Cipriani was recently designated the development team for Pier 57 at 15th St. in the Hudson River Park.

Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, said both sites are on the society’s watch list, which they monitor for any development activity. The warehouse could be a “neutron bomb” if developed to the full 32 stories, he warned.

“It’s a huge site,” agreed Zack Winestine, co-chairperson of the Greenwich Village Community Task Force. “Everywhere you look there’s a soft site that could blow up into development.”

However, Born said nothing’s final on the garage’s future.

“We have no definitive plans to do anything there,” he said. “We’ve been contemplating closing the garage for development and the reason it’s closed is because the elevator broke.”

Born said the building, which they bought five years ago, is basically built to its maximum allowable floor-to-area ratio. The site’s zoning allows residential use as of right, he noted.

However, a local real estate source reports that air rights from the adjacent three-story townhouse at 164 Perry St. were recently sold, raising the likelihood Born and Drukier are planning to add floors above the garage.

Berman noted that the building’s facade has few windows, so there’s a concern adding new windows might not be done in a historically sensitive way.

Meanwhile, Steve Witkoff, head of the Witkoff Group, said he’s very aware of the community’s feelings about overdevelopment and will purposefully not build a tall tower at the Whitehall warehouse site, which allows residential use as of right.

“We are very familiar with the community,” said Witkoff, noting that “the first thing they did” after buying the building was, nine months ago, to meet with a group representing the community, including Berman. “We said we had no intention of building that site anywhere close to the maximum height that would be allowable,” he said, “that we want to come in here and have people say, ‘Here’s a developer that is doing something contextual.’ ”

If the warehouse were demolished and a new tower constructed on a smaller footprint, it could be up to 32 stories, Witkoff confirmed. But they plan to keep the existing building as a base and add on top of it to a height of 17 stories with a number of setbacks, with most of the design set back from the river, and with an interior courtyard. The building will be from 250,000 to 290,000 sq. ft.

They hired Rick Cook from Cook & Fox as the project’s architect, who Witkoff said is “contextually sensitive.” If the old warehouse can’t support the new structure, they would demolish it and construct something just like it, Witkoff said. It will be an energy-efficient green building, as well, he noted. They will be using the preservation firm Higgins & Quasebarth as historical consultants on making the building contextual with the historic neighborhood.

Witkoff said they’re sensitive to trying not to have the building throw large shadows onto the neighborhood or impede views.

“Most developers would want to build to 32 floors,” he said. “And we knew that we couldn’t build to 32 stories without creating a firestorm.”

Witkoff said Cook “photographed every building in the neighborhood” to understand the local architecture and has even found design inspiration in the “breather towers” for the Holland Tunnel in the Hudson River.

Witkoff owns the Woolworth Building and is converting its tower to residential units. He has converted 10 Hanover Sq. to rental units and is converting the Regency Hotel at 55 Wall St. to condos.

He added he knows Gansevoort preservation activists Jo Hamilton and Florent Morellet from when he was being asked to possibly be involved in the effort to relocate the Flower Market to the Meat Market. And he says he personally spent “300 hours” in community meetings during the Pier 57 bid process.

“A year ago we tried to put forth something before there was any pressure for rezoning [the Far West Village], because that’s the way we operate,” Witkoff noted of the Whitehall site. “We’re going to be a developer that listens very, very carefully.”

Berman said Witkoff had not spoken to him yet about the size and actual design of the building.

May 6th, 2005, 07:08 PM
If it is designed with a more sensitive skin than Astor Place it'll be a decent building.


Gwathmey design not superior, neighbors say at zoning hearing
By Albert Amateau


May 6th, 2005, 10:30 PM
Not really. It looks just like Astor Place. The site needs something different.

May 17th, 2005, 02:29 PM
City, Landmarks Looking To Rezone Part of West Village

BY Staff Reporter of the Sun
May 17, 2005

The Department of City Planning and the Landmarks Preservation Commission are planning to issue proposals next month that will call for the down-zoning and landmark designation of parts of the West Village.
The proposals, which are to be released concurrently, cover the neighborhood from Jane to Barrow streets, between Washington and West streets.

"We are working on a balanced proposal so that new developments are consistent and respect the character of the neighborhood," the City Planning official overseeing the rezoning, Jeffrey Mulligan, said. "The plan reduces the density in some areas and also retains consistent density in others."

The department is overseeing the rezoning, while the landmarks commission is working to designate as historic some of the buildings, Mr. Mulligan said, adding that the agencies were "shooting to release the plans in June."

A spokeswoman for the commission, Diane Jackier, said the panel was "still evaluating" its proposal. She did not comment further.

Two streets to be down-zoned, where limits would be placed on the height and density of new developments, are Weehawken Street and Charles Lane, according to the zoning chairman of Community Board 2, David Reck.

The Far West Village "is a mishmash of small zoning districts, and this plan will make it a bit more coherent," Mr. Reck said. He has seen City Planning's preliminary proposal.

The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, which has spearheaded the rezoning and landmarks effort, submitted a plan to the landmarks commission last September, calling for the designation of a historic district between Horatio and Barrow streets, west of Washington and Greenwich streets.

"We are pushing the city every day to move ahead with the landmarking and the down-zoning as soon, and as comprehensively, as possible," the executive director of the Greenwich Village Society, Andrew Berman, said.

The group, which held a march last weekend to push for its plan, has zeroed in on several structures that it said should be designated as landmarks. Included is a wood-frame house from 1849 at 6 Weehawken St., designed by a boatbuilder. The ground floor had an oyster bar - a popular enterprise along the Hudson River waterfront in 19th-century New York.

Other sites include factories, seamen's hotels, and tenement buildings that were once part of the maritime life of the Far West Side.

While preservationists touted next month's moves as hard-won victories in a battle to safeguard a historic neighborhood, others said the city's plans would limit an already tight housing market.

A senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute who has written extensively on the city's real estate, Julia Vitullo Martin, said a down-zoning would prevent the development of much-needed market-rate housing.

"We are building subsidized housing in areas like the Brooklyn waterfront, where people would pay top dollar for apartments, and at the same time preventing the development of market-rate housing elsewhere," she said. "With 750,000 new city residents since 1990, and another 1.5 million expected to come, where are they supposed to live?"

The City Planning proposal does not call for the down-zoning of the hotly contested site of the Whitehall Storage warehouse on Charles Street. There, the Witkoff Group and Lehman Brothers are planning to build a 17-story, 250,000-square-foot residential condominium.

Current zoning allows for a 32-story building at the site, but the developers have said they would limit the height and density to fit in the context of the neighborhood.

The president of the Witkoff Group, Steve Witkoff, who is also converting the Woolworth Building across from City Hall and the Regency Hotel at 55 Wall St. into condominiums, did not return calls for comment.

"The developer has been meeting with the community on this project," City Planning's Mr. Mulligan said, "and we have seen what the building looks like and are confident that what they are developing is sensitive to the surrounding neighborhood."


May 17th, 2005, 02:47 PM
The base of the Whitehall Warehouse is horrible. I hope that since they can't build tall, that this piece of junk is torn down.

July 22nd, 2005, 11:17 PM
I hope this is the right place for these:

From http://cityrealty.com:

New project on Bond Street in NoHo 22-JUL-05

A vacant lot at 46-48 Bond Street adjacent to the Great Jones Lumber Yard in NoHo is the site of a planned 12-story condominium apartment building.

The site is one block north of the NoHo East Historic District.

The developer, Donald Capoccia, revised his plans after meetings with community organizations and is seeking a special permit from the city’s Board of Standards & Appeals to rezone the site from manufacturing to permit residential uses.

Community Board 2 last night approved a resolution supporting the special permit, but wanted the 129-foot height of the proposed building reduced by 9 feet along with provisions that the minimum size of the apartments be 1,200 square feet and that any eating and drinking establishment on the first floor not have live music or dancing.

The building has been designed by Marvin Meltzer, the architect of the Gotham Court rental apartment building at 149-151 Essex Street that opened in 2003, and will have 29 units.

David B. Reck, the chairman of the board’s zoning committee, told the board that the requested reduction in height might result in a building with a broader base and that the developer, who plans to replace cobblestones on the street, was not seeking extra bulk above a floor-to-area-ratio (FAR) of 5.

The Great Jones Lumber Yard site has been merged into one zoning lot with the development site.

New SoHo project 22-JUL-05

A nine-story building with 25 condominium apartments is planned for 74-88 Avenue of the Americas, a site that presently contains the Moondance Diner, a parking lot with a two-story garage and a two-story building with a garage and a photo shop.

The property occupies the entire block bounded by the Avenue of the Americas and Canal, Thompson and Grand Streets except for a narrow 7-story tenement-style residential building on the northeast corner and the Grand Canal Courts, a city playground, on the southern portion of the block.

The developer, Hudson Island LLC, is seeking a variance from the Board of Standards & Appeals to permit residential use on the site and an increase in bulk over the existing floor-to-area ratio (FAR) of 5 that is permitted. Last night, Community Board 2 passed a resolution that supported the construction of a residential building on the site provided that the minimum size residential units are 1,200 square feet and that the FAR does not exceed 5. It also supported the use of the first floor along the Avenue of the Americas for an eating and drinking establishment provided there will be no entertainment, live music or dancing.

According to David B. Reck, chairman of the board’s zoning committee, the developer has indicated he may seek to recreate the Moondance Diner in some way in the project.

July 27th, 2005, 10:20 PM
From http://cityrealty.com:

25 Bond Street under construction 26-JUL-05

Construction has started on 25 Bond Street, a 9-unit condominium apartment building in the NoHo Historic District.

The project is one the site of a former parking garage and measures 100 feet wide by 114 deep. It is being developed by Goldman Properties and is expected to be completed in about a year.

According to a spokesman for BKSK, the architects for the development, all but two of the apartments have already been sold. BKSK has designed several of TriBeCa’s most distinguished recent residential projects including the Hubert at 7 Hubert Street and the Duane Park Building at 166 Duane Street.

The 8-story building has a setback at the 7th floor and its base is an unusual façade that is an irregularly spaced colonnade about two-and-a-half feet in front of the windows. The stone façade, according to the spokesman, was influenced in part by the work of architects Rafael Moneo and Eric Perry.

The former owner of the property, Tribeach Holdings, the developer of 129 Lafayette Street, had planned a building with 23 apartments.

New Reade Street condo building 26-JUL-05

A new condominium apartment building is rising at 138 Reade Street in TriBeCa.

The 8-unit building, which should be completed in about a year, is adjacent to the very handsome and modern townhouse at 144 Reade Street and both projects have been designed by the same architectural firm, BKSK. A marketing office for the new building is expected to open at 104 Reade Street in October.

BKSK, a partnership consisting of Stephen Byrns, Harry Kendall, George Schieferdecker and Joan Krevlin, has designed several of the most attractive recent new construction and conversion projects in TriBeCa such as the Hubert at 7 Hubert Street, the Duane Park at 166 Duane Street, and the Fischer Mills at 387-397 Greenwich Street and the 9-story building at 124 Hudson Street.

138 Reade Street is being developed by 138-142 Reade Street LLCD and is between Hudson and Greenwich Streets and is one of the nicest in TriBeCa and half a block from the Washington Market Park.

July 27th, 2005, 10:40 PM
25 Bond Street under construction 26-JUL-05

Construction has started on 25 Bond Street, a 9-unit condominium apartment building in the NoHo Historic District.

The project is one the site of a former parking garage and measures 100 feet wide by 114 deep. It is being developed by Goldman Properties and is expected to be completed in about a year.

I understand there could be a problem with this one -- at least one of the older existing loft buildings on either side of this site have experienced wall cracks and other problems that came about during the foundation phase of 25 Bond.

Buyer beware!!

July 29th, 2005, 11:43 PM
From http://cityrealty.com:

New Gwathmey Siegel residential projects 29-JUL-05

Plans for a low-rise residential and retail development on a parking lot between Wooster Street and West Broadway are being revised. The site, now a parking lot, is directly across West Broadway from the SoHo Grand Hotel.

The property, which has 125 feet of frontage on West Broadway and 147 feet of frontage on Wooster Street, was acquired recently from Moses Marx by United American Land LLC, of which Albert, Jason and Jody Laboz are principals.

United American Land, which recently built the Lyla condominium apartment building at 63 West 17th Street, has commissioned the architectural firm of Gwathmey Siegel for the project, which would have retail facilities on West Broadway and townhouses on Wooster Street.

Gwathmey Siegel is the architectural firm that designed the sinuously curved apartment tower at 445 Lafayette Street, now nearing completion, a similar shaped tower planned for the Superior Ink site in the Far West Village and a mid-rise apartment tower planned for 240 Park Avenue South.

A spokesman for United American Land said today that plans, which include a 150-car garage, were being revised and that no construction timetable has yet been established.

The landmarks committee of Community Board 2 approved the plan last fall, but the Landmarks Preservation Commission requested more work on the massing and setbacks in the design in December.

July 30th, 2005, 12:23 AM
New Gwathmey Siegel residential projects

Plans for a low-rise residential and retail development on a parking lot between Wooster Street and West Broadway are being revised...

United American Land...has commissioned the architectural firm of Gwathmey Siegel for the project...the architectural firm that designed the sinuously curved apartment tower at 445 Lafayette Street ... a similar shaped tower planned for the Superior Ink site in the Far West Village...

The landmarks committee of Community Board 2 approved the plan last fall, but the Landmarks Preservation Commission requested more work on the massing and setbacks in the design in December.

Luckily this site is in a Landmark district -- which, if we're lucky, will keep G/S from subjecting us to any more of that ghastly aqua-colored glass.

August 26th, 2005, 11:36 PM
From http://cityrealty.com:

Related revises plans for Superior Ink site on West Street 26-AUG-05

Andrew Berman, the executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, told CityRealty.com today that a representative of The Related Companies Jesse Masyr of the law firm of Wachtel & Masyr, has indicated it has scaled back its plans for a new 104-unit, condominium apartment building on the site of the Superior Ink building at 70 Bethune Street, which fronts on West Street overlooking the Hudson River in the West Village.

Initially, Related had indicated it wanted to build a curved, reflective-glass tower very similar to the one it is now finishing at 445 Lafayette Square adjacent to Cooper Union in the East Village. That tower has been designed by Gwathmey Siegel Associates, the architect also for Related for the Superior Ink site.

Gwathmey Siegel has now designed a masonry-clad structure for Related at the Superior Ink site, Mr. Berman said. The height of the tower, he continued, has been reduced from 20 to 15 stories and the plan now calls for the tower to be placed on the western end of the site with town-house units on Bethune Street.

The new Gwathmey Siegel design for the site is not curved, according to Mr. Berman, whose organization has been campaigning for the project to be smaller in height and size so that it might be more compatible with the neighborhood, which is the subject of a rezoning plan by the city that will be considered by the City Planning Commission September 14.

Related is understood to be planning to seek variances from the Board of Standards & Appeals for getting a "community facilities" bonus, according to Mr. Berman, who said that Jesse Masyr, who represents Related, has been meeting with his organization and that further negotiations are anticipated. The related site is included in the proposed new zoning district and that district would permit the site to be developed for residential uses whereas the existing zoning only permits industrial uses.

The Superior Ink facility on the site has two smokestacks and was originally a Nabisco cracker bakery that was erected in 1919. It is not far from some white modernist towers designed by Richard Meier on West Street for two different developers.

The building plans originally filed for the site by Related called for a 225-foot-tall tower that would become the tallest tower on the "Gold Coast" of the West Village and would be 15 feet taller than two of the Richard Meier towers at Perry and Charles Street on West Street.

The new design calls for a building about 190 feet high, Mr. Berman said.

Related is one of the city’s most active developers and was a co-developer of the Time-Warner Center at Columbus Center and recently was named a co-developer of the Moynihan Station project that will include new facilities for Pennsylvania Station in the James A. Farley Post Office building on Eighth Avenue between 31st & 33rd Streets.

Whitehall mini-storage site plans scaled downward 26-AUG-05

The developers of the Whitehall Mini-Storage site on West Street between Charles and West 10th Streets in the West Village have agreed to reduce the height of their proposed new condominium apartment building by two stories to 15 stories, according to Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation.

The developers are the Witkoff Organization and Lehman Brothers and the site was excluded, over the protests of some neighborhood organizations, from a new rezoning of the neighborhood that the City Planning Commission will consider September 14.

The developers could build a 32-story tower of about 300 feet under existing zoning.

Mr. Berman told CityRealty.Com today that recent discussions between Steve Witkoff of the Witkoff Organization recently told his group that his organization is willing to put a restrictive covenant on the site that it cannot be built taller than 15 stories. Mr. Berman said that such a covenant would be "better than not having one," but added that his group would like to see the project become "much lower and smaller."

His organization has been campaigning to reduce the scale of not only this project but another one nearby that is planned by the Related Companies on the Superior Ink plant site at 70 Bethune Street.

Since the recent erection of three towers nearby on West Street designed by Richard Meier, this neighborhood has become known as the "Gold Coast" of the West Village and some preservation groups have become concerned that the new, large and expensive projects will dramatically alter the character and charm of the area.

March 29th, 2006, 10:47 AM
During the rally they were heckled by Dave Doctor, a young Libertarian from the Lower East Side, who objects to restraints on property owners’ rights. Using an electric bullhorn — he specifically got a sound permit ahead of time — he shouted, “Berman — go home!” and held up a series of signs, such as “No More Historic Dictatorships” and “Free the West Village.”

“Creep!” the Villagers shouted back at him.
Mixed feelings about this dude. On one hand, he's a warrior, a NIMBY slasher that's done more to aid pro-building that most of us combined. On the other hand, the Village is one of those unique neighborhoods that's almost fine the way it is and new glass boxes would only make it duller. so in this case I think I'm with the villagers' standpoint. Yet from an objective viewpoint, he's a dork with too much free time (that coming from a person with thousands of posts on various boards, I'm such a hypocrite).

March 29th, 2006, 02:33 PM
That guy, Dave, has posted on here a number of times, too. Very rigid - no sense of compromise. Actually, that is what libertarianism is all about, isn't it. No rules - at all. Total social freedom. Total economic freedom. No rules. No regulations.

March 29th, 2006, 05:01 PM
That guy, Dave, has posted on here a number of times, too. Very rigid - no sense of compromise. Actually, that is what libertarianism is all about, isn't it. No rules - at all. Total social freedom. Total economic freedom. No rules. No regulations.

That would be very nice. That's how most of New York was built in the late 19th and the first part of the 20th century. I wonder if they could build the Empire State Building today with all those zoning and environmental rules.. They would have to hire unionized workers instead of getting the best bang for the buck...

March 29th, 2006, 05:19 PM

All those zoning and environmental laws were gained after horrible and frequent accidents in working conditions that were often unsanitary or dangerous, fires, food poisoning, tainted water etc and etc...protection that is taken for granted today. The NYC of the late 19th century looks lovely in photographs and was perhaps a delight for 10% of the population ....but only an idiot could think we´ve gone down-hill since then.

March 29th, 2006, 05:25 PM
I can't imagine the number of horrifyingly hideous reductionist high-profit yield boxes New York would be forced to endure (as if it weren't bad enough now). Oh, not to mention cheap and potentially unsafe construction.

March 29th, 2006, 05:33 PM
And another thing Mr. Spice:

The design of the Empire State Building is the RESULT of zoning laws, specifically the 1916 ZONING laws that changed the shape of NY buildings REQUIRING set-backs.

From the ESB web site:

"If it had been built a few years later, after the International Style had become popular and with a different set of zoning laws, the archictect, William F. Lamb, might have designed a plain box."

"Instead the mass is broken by indentations running its full height and the top provides much greater visual interest than the apparent flat roofs of International Style buildings."

"They would have to hire unionized workers instead of getting the best bang for the buck..."

LOL: the contruction workers on the Empire State building were all union members.

March 29th, 2006, 06:09 PM
That would be very nice ...
Some suggested reading (on the tragedy which led to reform of fire protection regulations for buildings in NYC):

Triangle_Shirtwaist_Factory_Fire (http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/trianglefire/)

Reforms_to_NYC_Building_C (http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/trianglefire/narrative6.html)ode

March 29th, 2006, 06:20 PM
And some info on the 1916 zoning laws and the early 20th century NIMBYs that are resposible for NYC´s romantic step-back skyline:


March 29th, 2006, 06:42 PM
"If it had been built a few years later, after the International Style had become popular and with a different set of zoning laws, the archictect, William F. Lamb, might have designed a plain box."

Sorta like his firm did, 45 years later:

3 Park Avenue

March 29th, 2006, 06:54 PM
That would be very nice. That's how most of New York was built in the late 19th and the first part of the 20th centuryYou have a romantic view of life in New York at the turn of the century. I suggest reading a contemporary New York Evening Herald reporter, Jacob Riis.

One of his works: How the Other Half Lives

Jacob Riis photographs (http://xroads.virginia.edu/~ma01/davis/photography/images/riisphotos/slideshow1.html#)

March 29th, 2006, 11:11 PM
3 Park Avenue
Detestable ... aaarrrrrrrggghh

December 14th, 2006, 01:33 PM
From http://cityrealty.com:

New project on Bond Street in NoHo 22-JUL-05

A vacant lot at 46-48 Bond Street adjacent to the Great Jones Lumber Yard in NoHo is the site of a planned 12-story condominium apartment building...

From http://cityrealty.com/new_developments:

Bond Street activity 12-DEC-06


Excavation work is advancing at 48 Bond Street where Dabon LLC, of which Donald Capoccia is a principal, is planning an 11-story building with 17 residential condominium apartments, according to documents on file with the city Department of Buildings.

Deborah Berke is the architect and David Gross of GF55 is the executive architect and Romy Goldman of Gold Development is the development manager.

The building is a few feet to the east of 40 Bond Street, another new residential condominium project whose façade on Bond Street has recently been enclosed although not yet finished with the curved green glass elements designed by Herzog & de Meuron for the developer, Ian Schrager.

Another large new project on the same cobblestone block, 25 Bond Street, is entirely wrapped in shrouds.

The site at 48 Bond Street had been used as a parking lot and storage yard for Great Jones Lumber Yard and it is not far from the handsome and curved residential condominium building at 57 Bond Street on the southwest corner at The Bowery that was recently completed.

Renderings and further details of the 48 Bond Street project are not yet available.

December 15th, 2006, 07:07 AM
How did we get to 48 Bond on a "Far Lower West Side" thread???

ali r.
{downtown broker}

December 15th, 2006, 10:03 AM
I posted something on the 48 Bond Street site in the 40 Bond thread back in August; look HERE (http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showpost.php?p=116710&postcount=51)

This is how 48 Bond looked a few weeks ago (the Great Jones Lumber building which is part of this site can be seen in the background, wrapped in blue); the concrete for the foundation is now almost complete:


June 15th, 2007, 10:44 AM
Not so pretty in pink: Wraps come off Schnabel tower

By Lincoln Anderson

Volume 77, Number 2 | June 13 - 19, 2007

Above, a view of Julian Schnabel’s new hot-pink high-rise at 360 W. 11th St. Below, the magenta monolith seen from another angle — through two of the Richard Meier-designed glass towers on West St.

Artist Julian Schnabel’s latest, and by far largest, creation, a residential tower at 360 W. 11th St., had been kept under wraps during most of its construction. But with the work apparently nearing completion, netting that had been covering it was recently removed to reveal — a hot-pink high-rise. Andrew Berman, the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation’s director, said he suspects the worst.

“I don’t know for sure — but my fear is that this will be the color,” he said. “I think virtually any other color would be more acceptable.” Berman called the building — with arched windows and clay roof tiles — Mediterranean style. “What it actually looks like is a house you would see in the hills above Hollywood — if it was two stories. On the Greenwich Village waterfront at 17 stories, it’s a nightmare,” he said. The preservationist thought this very may well be intentional — that Schnabel wants to punish, with pink, those who opposed him.

“It almost looks as though he went to great pains to make this building as ugly as possible and to make it stick out like a sore thumb,” Berman observed. Two years ago, G.V.S.H.P. and local residents began lobbying the Department of Buildings not to grant the project a permit, since the Far West Village rezoning, which would have prevented the height, was pending approval. Despite their protests, and videos of alleged after-hours work violations, D.O.B. issued the permit. The construction involved adding an 11-story addition atop a three-story former stable for a 167-foot-tall building.

On Monday, an assistant who answered the phone at Schnabel’s studio provided the artist/developer’s e-mail address. Schnabel did not respond to an e-mail request for comment by press time.

A building’s exterior color is not something requiring approval from the Department of Buildings, so D.O.B. has no information on what the building’s permanent color may be. The Landmarks Preservation Commission does oversee building color, but the site is not in a landmarked district.


© 2007 Community Media, LLC

June 15th, 2007, 11:09 AM
Well, there ya go.

June 15th, 2007, 04:48 PM
Love it. Architects are so conservative in their color choices. Modernists love gray, acqua and turqoise. Traditionalists love red, beige and brown. Yawn to them all, I say. I recently read an article about how local artists spruced up all the Stalinist architecture in Tirana, Albania by painting all the buildings wacked out colors. It looked fantastic. NYC needs more of that.

June 25th, 2007, 01:54 PM
Um, the Villager article is hogwash, as is Berman's characteristically overblown response to the building. Not only is its height virtually the same as the apartment building next door, but the color is warm and much more subtle than "hot pink". It practically fits right in.




June 25th, 2007, 04:22 PM
Andrew Berman hates anything other than a red brick townhouse. It's nice to see some color splash in a building and the height is nothing to be alarmed about. I also like the windows, and it's overall Italian feel. The red brick tower in the foreground is much more offensive to the neighborhood.

June 25th, 2007, 04:52 PM
Looks like salmon to me, more orange than pink.

June 25th, 2007, 05:30 PM
That "overall Italian feel" looks about as Italian as the Bellagio.

The building shown in that photo looks gross...but it seems unfinished and Schnabel is no dummy... I'll hold judgement.

This is going to be interesting to follow. Keep those photos coming. Can we see some close-up details?

Who knows, if the details are good... could this be the 15CPW of Downtown?

Mediterranean is all over the city. This is a skillful version:



No thanks:



June 25th, 2007, 05:41 PM
You know I keep looking at it and it looks like he's doing the paint with an aged patina look. It just might be very very cool. Maybe, maybe not. This is a very fine line.

June 25th, 2007, 05:51 PM
Oh no forget about it... this is going to be fabulous.
pics, pics, pics....pleeeeeeease.

June 25th, 2007, 09:09 PM
Tough to get a good angle that day, as I didn't walk far south enough to get a different view. The street itself is too narrow, and from the north and west, the brick building next door obscures much of what isn't already obscured by construction netting.

You're right about the paint: it has an aged patina look, and it comes off as fairly authentic, especially to the naked eye. I'll get some more pics if I'm in the area.

June 26th, 2007, 09:15 AM
This is going to be the most interesting development to watch.

First impression: is he nuts?....

But after 2min of looking at the photos, picking apart what he's getting at... remembering shots I've seen of his own personal loft, how it is decorated, as well as his work on the GrammercyParkHotel (plus attending a big retropective of his paintings in Bologna).... conclusion: no, this is brilliant.:

http://www.nypost.com/seven/06162007/news/regionalnews/village_hue__cry_regionalnews_melissa_jane_kronfel d.htm

(Too tall? If it's in this neighborhood and it's tall and ugly... well yeah, it's too tall... but I think this will be quite beautiful. This is the stuff you can make an exception for.)

Imagine this in 10 years with vines growing up the sides. You'll see.




July 14th, 2007, 12:58 PM
Awesome. That color compliments the blue glass on Meier's buildings really nicely. And the arched windows really come alive set in that vivid hue.

July 14th, 2007, 01:36 PM
"$4,000-plus per square foot "


July 16th, 2007, 09:08 PM
Beautiful! Berman's an idiot.

August 4th, 2007, 11:30 AM
360 w 11th:

So far http://wirednewyork.com/forum/images/icons/icon14.gif

Looks best up close through the trees.

http://img77.imageshack.us/img77/5742/360w1101clf1.th.jpg (http://img77.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1101clf1.jpg) http://img77.imageshack.us/img77/194/360w1102cdu5.th.jpg (http://img77.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1102cdu5.jpg) http://img77.imageshack.us/img77/7053/360w1103cas7.th.jpg (http://img77.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1103cas7.jpg) http://img126.imageshack.us/img126/568/360w1104cjc0.th.jpg (http://img126.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1104cjc0.jpg) http://img126.imageshack.us/img126/705/360w1105cma4.th.jpg (http://img126.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1105cma4.jpg)

http://img126.imageshack.us/img126/4778/360w1106cai3.th.jpg (http://img126.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1106cai3.jpg) http://img126.imageshack.us/img126/8944/360w1107cuy6.th.jpg (http://img126.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1107cuy6.jpg) http://img126.imageshack.us/img126/9779/360w1108ckn8.th.jpg (http://img126.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1108ckn8.jpg) http://img167.imageshack.us/img167/5515/360w1109cut2.th.jpg (http://img167.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1109cut2.jpg)

August 4th, 2007, 11:31 AM
http://img167.imageshack.us/img167/2804/360w1110czl7.th.jpg (http://img167.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1110czl7.jpg) http://img166.imageshack.us/img166/8189/360w1116cyl6.th.jpg (http://img166.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1116cyl6.jpg) http://img166.imageshack.us/img166/261/360w1115ckd5.th.jpg (http://img166.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1115ckd5.jpg) http://img167.imageshack.us/img167/1642/360w1113ckd1.th.jpg (http://img167.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1113ckd1.jpg) http://img167.imageshack.us/img167/979/360w1112cpf6.th.jpg (http://img167.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1112cpf6.jpg) http://img166.imageshack.us/img166/7776/360w1114cap1.th.jpg (http://img166.imageshack.us/my.php?image=360w1114cap1.jpg)

August 4th, 2007, 11:37 AM
Wow, what an adornment to the neighborhood.

Would also look good in Brooklyn Heights.

August 11th, 2007, 09:37 AM
This is where people like Berman lose thier credibility. They start with a noble undertaking and, once they get some press, it becomes a self-righteous crusade. He comes off as petty and foolish.

August 11th, 2007, 11:05 AM
Beautiful! Berman's an idiot.

Copied from article: http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2007/07/schnabel_playing_coy_with_west.html
" Don't even ask about concierge service and other pedestrian amenities."

Yes, agreement here on Berman. This is one beautiful building, it would be great to see more of the same elswhere in Manhatton.

My feeling is that Julian Schnabel's - less-amenities approach - in developing this condo was a good move for this property; I think he may start a trend toward less amenities in luxury condo development.

August 13th, 2007, 01:25 PM
Tamarkin's latest: Echoing the past, quietly
Conservative design joins edgy neighbors in West Village
By Patrick Hedlund

The Real Deal
August 2007

A luxe new residential project at 397 West 12th Street, near West Street along the Hudson River, will feature a simple and elegant design that blends well with the West Village's historic, cobblestoned character, according to Cary Tamarkin, the building's architect and developer.

His double role is rare; few are focused on both the bottom line and the design of a project. According to Tamarkin, the 10-story brick building he is creating will stand out from other high-profile projects in the neighborhood.

"What we do in general, and what we're certainly doing here, is we are architects that are very interested in the context of the neighborhood, and not in a historical pastiche kind of way," he says from Tamarkin & Co.'s Flatiron office. His company plans to relocate to the ground floor of 397 West 12th Street once construction wraps in September 2008.

"We're interested in building simply and beautifully, and not screaming for attention as so many of the new condominiums are," Tamarkin says.

The structure will house just four residential units in addition to the commercial ground floor. The crown jewel will be a 6,600-square-foot quadruplex penthouse that includes an additional 3,000 square feet of outdoor space.

While not expressly referencing architects and designers like Richard Meier, Julian Schnabel, Asymptote Architects and Jean Nouvel -- whose developments are prominent in the rising West Village skyline -- Tamarkin insists his project will not rely on outlandish aesthetic twists to generate hype.

The competition? An eight-story, 24-unit tower at 166 Perry Street designed by Asymptote Architects, next door to Richard Meier's Perry Street towers that brought the starchitect craze to New York. The lobby decor at 166 Perry, in the words of the broker, is reminiscent of "A Clockwork Orange."

Meanwhile, Nouvel's design for 100 Eleventh Avenue on far West 19th Street -- technically Chelsea -- has a curved glass façade of 1,650 individually designed windowpanes. The panes are sloped at different angles, and each opens in a different direction.

And the hot-pink exterior of Julian Schnabel's 17-story tower at 360 West 11th Street is upsetting some neighborhood preservationists. Andrew Berman, director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, has been quoted as saying Schnabel's garish pink exterior is punishment for the group's objections to the building.

In contrast, Tamarkin's boutique building will feature a façade of buff-colored Roman brick covered with multi-paned steel windows on all four sides. The architect says the design evokes the "maritime industrial warehouse" flavor of the far West Village, qualities he echoed in the adjacent site, an earlier residential foray at 495 West Street.

The new space -- which totals nearly 23,000 square feet over the four residential units -- will remain raw and unfinished for purchasers to customize to their own architectural tastes.

A one-story unit, located on the second floor with 3,600 square feet, has an anticipated asking price of $5.5 million, according to the developer. A pair of two-story duplexes, comprising 6,250 square feet each with 19-foot-high ceilings, will go on the market for $11.5 million and $14 million. The expansive penthouse unit already has a buyer in contract. The developer is not disclosing details of the sale, which will likely fetch blockbuster dollars in the neighborhood.

The Bank of New York provided a $27 million acquisition and construction loan for the project, arranged in May by real estate investment banking firm Sonnenblick Goldman.

Tamarkin, who also lives in the West Village, maintains a fondness for the neighborhood, as evidenced by his properties on West Street and at 140 Perry Street. He notes the encroaching suburbanization of the once-gritty neighborhood has made it the premier location for the well-heeled to nest.

"It's a great place to bring up a family, it's a great place to be single, it's a great place to be gay -- it's a great place to just be," Tamarkin says.

His broker on this project, Jan Hashey, an executive vice president with Prudential Douglas Elliman, agrees. She lives at the architect's first far West Village building at 140 Perry Street.

Hashey says the demographic looking in the far West Village is "in their early 30s, with one child or two children... They're peaking in their careers, and they can afford it."

Sandra Balan, vice president with the Corcoran Group, adds that because of the neighborhood's prime location next to Hudson River Park, its proximity to restaurants and retailers, 397 West 12th Street will draw interest from an affluent purchasers pool.

"Either celebrity money or high-end buyers from the financial sector will converge on this property," she says.

Though Tamarkin's design is on the conservative side compared to some other new development in the area, there has been some contention regarding the project's look.

The decision to go with a less-prominent design was a result in part of the downzoning of the neighborhood in 2005, which forced Tamarkin to shave off one or two stories, or about 4,000 square feet, from the original plan.

The reduction rankled Tamarkin, he admits, because he felt area preservationists slighted him during the process by broadly politicizing the issue and painting him as unscrupulous for fighting to push through his initial plan before the new zoning took effect.

Some local preservationists, while hailing Tamarkin's developments as contextually sound and lauding his community involvement, admitted their pleasure at seeing the original plan scaled back.

Berman, a vocal opponent of some recent construction in the far West Village, claims he welcomes the architect's efforts in the neighborhood as long as Tamarkin doesn't stray too far from prior work.

"If we had our druthers, [the project] would probably be even shorter, but the zoning rules are what they are," Berman says. "He's definitely done some developments in our neighborhood that are thoughtfully designed and very well-received in the community. Whether he'll be as successful with this one, we'll see."

However, Berman expresses concern over the continuing influx of the über-wealthy into the far West Village, saying it could create a homogenous community lacking an edginess and affordability the neighborhood once possessed.

Tamarkin has seen controversy in other ventures, like his East 91st Street project, which was also conservative in design but drew the ire of Woody Allen, among others. Filmmaker Allen made a movie expressing his opposition, and construction was delayed for years until plans for the 17-story building were scaled back to 10 stories.

The building was finally completed in 2004.

Both Tamarkin and Hashey believe the project will be a draw for artists or art collectors who take an interest in custom-designing their own space and plan to utilize it to display larger-scale pieces.

With that, Tamarkin remains confident the building will be a hit, even though he admits to excluding about "98 percent" of potential buyers because of the units' size and price.

"There's a real 'holy s--t' factor for them: It's like you either have to have it, or you can't have it," the developer concludes of his future buyers. "Either 'no way, this is not for me' or 'there's nothing else out there' -- that's the whole idea behind it."


An architectural drawing for 397 West 12th Street Architectural statements are rising in the West Village: glass towers with crazy-quilt patterns and a building with a hot-pink hue. But not all new buildings are being designed by mad-scientist types.

September 24th, 2007, 01:27 AM
More of Schnabel's Palazzo Chupi (http://curbed.com/archives/2007/08/31/schnabelwatch_thats_palazzo_chupi_to_you.php) ...












September 24th, 2007, 04:22 AM
A fabulous mess. The home-decor press is going to go NUTS over this one.

September 24th, 2007, 07:03 AM
Definitely out of the box.

September 24th, 2007, 08:05 AM
The glass walled apartment filled with mid-century modern furniture is OLD.

Editors are going to be dueling over who gets to feature apartments here and at 15CPW.

September 24th, 2007, 10:38 AM
Schnabel's building was my favorite small scale project in the City. Sadly,that black box (water tank?) on top hugely detracts from an otherwise great piece of architecture. It's like the antenna on top of the Bloomberg building...

September 24th, 2007, 11:10 AM
Sadly,that black box (water tank?) on top hugely detracts from an otherwise great piece of architecture. It's like the antenna on top of the Bloomberg building...
Unobservant me: didn't notice it till you pointed it out. Now that I've noticed it I think of it as the enigmatic presence.

Schnabel's work is full of that kind of thing. Check out his Gramercy Hotel lobby.

September 24th, 2007, 11:11 AM
The box encloses roof-top mechanicals -- and perhaps the water tank? --- I'd like to have seen it done in a different way.

Am curious to see if the beige stucco on the front arcades will get a different color treatment (hoping so).

The place is chockful of busy artisans of all sorts -- more varied accents there than at a UN conference.

September 24th, 2007, 11:22 AM
From the photos I thought the box was in a shroud and would be revealed. Are you guys sure it will remain that way?

That beige color is not great but it's also the color of the window surrounds. I imagine it serves as a transition from the base's brick to the pink. I'm trying to imagine what other color it could be... maybe a few tones darker?


September 24th, 2007, 12:06 PM
WOW this knocks my socks off! I love love love it.
This is the first time I've seen this and I did a real double take. Like, is this for real? Lofter, the first photo captures it especially well.
I want to live there, looks like I have to start playing Lotto.

September 24th, 2007, 12:06 PM
It seems that the beige should be a warmer tone.

Maybe the oregano ...


Regarding the roof-top box, let me check my files ...

Ah, yes -- I just happen to have some shots of that :cool:

It hides a large metal something or other.

Funny that Schnabel's architect has stuck those wonky galvanized chimneys up there :confused:

As you can see the neighbors have left everything out in the open ...


September 24th, 2007, 12:20 PM
The stuff up on the roof should be hidden behind molded fiberglass wash hanging on clothes lines.


September 24th, 2007, 12:32 PM
Perfect solution ^^^

Please forward to:

Julian Schnabel
Palazzo Chupi
360 West 11th STreet
New York, NY USA

Another shot (from someone who is NOT a fan (http://www.changemymanbags.com/2007/06/julian-schnabel-360-west-11th-street.html)) before the cover went up completely ...


September 24th, 2007, 12:36 PM
I'd like to see some bougainvillea up there.:)
A couple more years of global warming and it could happen.

September 24th, 2007, 02:44 PM
There really SHOULD be vines growing up the sides.


Answering the door bell:


October 4th, 2008, 03:27 AM
Friday, October 3, 2008, by Joey

Now is the time for the squeamish to look away. Julian Schnabel's Palazzo Chupi is hurting. Bad. Worse than we initially thought (http://curbed.com/archives/2008/09/30/chupi_in_crisis_palazzos_paint_peeling.php). By the looks of these photos sent in from a tipster on high, the miracle of West 11th Street is going under the knife for some serious touch-ups. Its skin is peeling and it looks like there are some deep gashes over its eyes. It's also screaming out in pain, but in a high-pitched frequency only our ears are attuned to. Permits just posted on the Department of Buildings website (http://a810-bisweb.nyc.gov/bisweb/JobsQueryByLocationServlet?next.x=60&next.y=8&allbin=1087671&allcount=0036&allboroughname=&allstrt=&allnumbhous=&jobsubmdate_month=&jobsubmdate_date=&jobsubmdate_year=&allinquirytype=BXS1PRA3&alljobtype=&stcodekey=&ckbunique=&glreccountn=0000000037&requestid=2) mention the scaffold erection and sidewalk shed, but the extent of Chupi's care is unclear. In short and without hyperbole, this is the most pressing matter facing the country today. Chupster, we're pulling for you.

· CHUPI IN CRISIS: Palazzo's Paint Peeling? (http://curbed.com/archives/2008/09/30/chupi_in_crisis_palazzos_paint_peeling.php) [Curbed]
· CHUPI IN CRISIS: The State of the Palazzo Address (http://curbed.com/archives/2008/09/03/chupi_in_crisis_the_state_of_the_palazzo_address.p hp) [Curbed]


http://curbednetwork.com/cache/gallery/3256/2910434558_ee7d4e9286_o.jpg (http://curbed.com/archives/2008/10/03/chupi_in_crisis_palazzo_losing_its_pink.php?o=0)





June 19th, 2012, 06:18 AM
Palazzo Chupi Emerges from Netting Paler Than Pepto Bismol

by Sara Polsky

http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/chuppifront_6_12-thumb.jpg (http://ny.curbed.com/uploads/chuppifront_6_12.jpg)

Time has softened the look of Palazzo Chupi, one of our biggest West Village obsessions. The building debuted with a neon pink facade, which gradually faded (http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2011/08/01/sands_of_time_turning_palazzo_chupi_paler_shade_of _pink.php) to a "dusty Venetian rose" and led us to question whether that had been Julian Schnabel's grand plan. Now a tipster writes in with a fresh photo: "It's only now just beginning to emerge from its netting and scaffolding after a long construction project of some kind. What's most interesting is how that awful Pepto Bismol pink has been changed to a more eye pleasing color. Thank you Chupi for that much needed facelift. Welcome to the neighborhood!" Paler pinks make better neighbors.


http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2012/06/18/palazzo_chupi_emerges_from_netting_paler_than_pept o_bismol.php

March 19th, 2013, 12:33 AM
That one deserves a separate thread instead of being lumped in the Far Lower Southwestside thread.

March 19th, 2013, 08:22 AM
Moved 35XV posts to new thread (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=37287&p=426158#post426158).

November 5th, 2013, 07:57 AM
Building permits filed for a new 15 story tower at the corner of Barrow and Greenwich. It's across from the Archive on the lot owned by St. Luke in the Fields Church.


July 16th, 2014, 10:56 AM
357 West St

Between Leroy and Clarkson Sts. Half block. Fed Ex owns the building fronting Washington St.

Herzog & de Meuron’s undulating concrete grid to rise along New York City’s Hudson River

Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Henry Melcher.

357 West Street. (Herzog & de Meuron and Ian Schrage)

Ian Schrager (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/ian-schrager#.U8V2Io1dWxU) and Herzog & de Meuron (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/herzog-de-meuron#.U8V2no1dWxU) are at it again. Just weeks after renderings appeared for the team’s Lower East Side boutique hotel (http://archpaper.com/news/articles.asp?id=7400), images of the prolific hotelier and Swiss architects’ condo project in the West Village have surfaced. Real estate blog NY YIMBY received renderings (http://newyorkyimby.com/2014/07/revealed-herzog-de-meurons-357-west-street.html) for 357 West Street, which show a curving, 12-story building that will become the latest addition to a corridor crowded with starchitecture.


The structure resembles much of Herzog & de Meuron’s recent work in the city, as it is clad in concrete and glass. These materials are being used at 215 Chrystie and 56 Leonard (http://newyorkyimby.com/2014/07/revealed-herzog-de-meurons-357-west-street.html)—the firm’s Tribeca tower, which looks like a dangerous game of Jenga. A tipster told YIMBY that the 357 West Street contains 88 units and is expected to open in 2017.
Herzog & de Meuron’s building will be in good starchitect company over on Manhattan’s western waterfront, which includes—or will soon include—works by Morris Adjmi (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/morris-adjmi-2#.U8V72I1dWxU), Helmut Jahn (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/helmut-jahn#.U8V7641dWxU), Jean Nouvel (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/jean-nouvel#.U8V8CY1dWxU), Shigeru Ban (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/shigeru-ban), Richard Meier (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/richard-meier#.U8V8aI1dWxU), Renzo Piano (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/renzo-piano#.U8V8fo1dWxU), and Frank Gehry (http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/tag/jean-nouvel#.U8V8CY1dWxU).




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The site at present. (https://www.google.com/maps/@40.729975,-74.010509,3a,75y,65.19h,90.33t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sUMG17oCCC2FejdSi2HE2sA!2e0)

It would be nice if this project finally motivates development of the landmarked Keller Hotel (https://www.google.com/maps/@40.732013,-74.010317,3a,90y,49.98h,93.07t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1spSOhg9ZrdOHbOyiP_eQ79Q!2e0), on West and Barrow Sts. It looks to be in pretty good shape.

July 16th, 2014, 12:07 PM
Very beautiful.

July 16th, 2014, 12:27 PM
Nice. Very Fort Lauderdale/Miami, and I still wouldn't mind it here.

July 19th, 2014, 10:42 AM

...12-story building that will become the latest addition to a corridor crowded with starchitecture.

Going by that Google street view (January 2013), that section doesn't appear "crowded with starchitecture"...yet.

July 20th, 2014, 03:56 PM
This project and their Schrager project are very similar to Rem Koolhaas's Park Grove designs in Miami. Same northern European schtick.