A Theater Package for Extell on West 45th
Monday, March 26, 2007,
Is Gary Barnett a theater groupie? He should have no problem getting a front row seat at any number of Broadway theaters. His Extell gang has bought up scads of those precious Theater District transferable air rights for what is reported to be a new 50-story Condo-slash-Hotel to go up right off Times Square at 131 - 139 West 45th Street. It seems three old Broadway theaters all the way across the Square have found an angel in Mr. B. And as Max Bialystock will tell you, it takes a lot of cash to put on a show. Deep pockets can come in mighty handy.
Extell is everywhere these days. East Side. West Side. All around the town. They're certainly no stranger to the Crossroads of Desire, with their flippin' fantastic Orion over on the Deuce. Now they've made some new friends on this side of Broadway. They cut some deals with their mid-block neighbors along West 45th for even more air rights. Now they can build high over that big bow tie down below. And when Extell's new one rises it could have some company a block over at 66 West 45th, where Enrique Norten and TEN Arquitectos have plans for another 50-story hotel-condo combo. Will these two 500 footers make beautiful music together? Let's just hope they don't hit any sour notes. Gary has enough trouble with glass as it is.
Copyright © 2007 Curbed
I really hope that Barnett does not raze this little gem:
That all depends. Is the current lot big enough to fit a 50-story hotel in it?
Btw, what did the other buildings that presumably was taken down earlier, looked like?
I just checked propertyshark and that building above is indeed, 131 W. 45 St., so it is in fact, part of the plot.
Passing by 131 W 45th yesterday I saw that BEST Exterminators have spray painted their name on the windows and affixed stickers to the facade stating that rodenticide has been placed throughout the building.
This is usually the precursor to demolition.
However DOB shows no Demo Application for this property -- yet.
Extell plans 55-story hotel condo project on West 45th Street
The Extell Development Company is planning to erect a 55-story hotel and hotel/condo tower at 135 West 45th Street utilizing air rights transfers from three nearby legitimate theaters.
It presented its massing studies, prepared by H. Thomas O'Hara, to the zoning committee of Community Board 5 last night.
Paul D. Selver of the law firm of Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP, which represents Extell, told the committee that the new mid-block building between the Avenue of the Americas and Seventh Avenue would contain 242 hotel rooms and 171 hotel condos. He said that the hotel would be operated by the Intercontinental.
Extell has acquired the air rights for an undisclosed amount and is seeking a certificate of appropriateness from the City Planning Commission. Under the terms of the certificate, the owners of the theaters agree to deed restrictions that limit their properties' use to legitimate theater, and agree to a maintenance program for their preservation and agree to contribute $14.91 per square foot of transferred air rights to the Special Theater Subdistrict Fund.
The committee voted 8 to 2 in favor of supporting the granting of the certificate, but several members expressed outrage that the city has not yet created the Theater Subdistrict Council, which would administer the fund.
On March 12, David Karnovsky, counsel of the Department of City Planning, wrote a letter to the chairman of Community Boards 4 and 5 in which he said that his office "is working to establish the TSC consistent with the requirements of the Zoning Resolution," adding that "While the formation of the TSC has proved to be more complex than originally anticipated, we anticipate being able to convene an organizational meeting in the early spring."
The planned tower would rise from a 9,500 square foot mid-block plot. The tower would receive 8,500 square feet of air rights from the Hirschfeld Theater, 9,500 from the St. James Theater and 54,820 square feet from the Broadhurst Theater.
The transfers would essentially reduce the available transferable air rights of the Hirschfeld and St. James theaters to nothing but the Broadhurst would still have about 31,000 square feet available, Mr. Selver said.
Joyce Matz, a member of the committee, opposed the granting of a certificate because she felt that the public benefit was insufficient especially since Mr. Selver said that all three theaters are in very good condition. The developer's contribution to the fund is estimated to be about $1.1 million.
Meile Rockefeller, co-chair of the committee said she was not happy with the fact that the planned building would be as tall as buildings on avenues even though it is a mid-block property.
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I wonder if O'Hara will be the architect. You wouldn't expect a chump like him to design an Intercontinental.
Yeah, Extell does not go cheap with their buildings. I really doubt they would use O'Hara....in fact, I wouldn't be shocked if they chose a lower tier big firm (Pelli, KPF, SOM)
That is at least comforting to hear--for the time being at least--that is until they show us a big, fat ugly rendering from O'Hara.
Then I'll go off the handle, I swear I will!