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Thread: Proposed - The New South Street Seaport - by SHoP Architects

  1. #16
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    Smile Yay!

    The new artistic director for the NY City Opera has absolutely no interest in moving the theater to a different location.

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    New Look Is Planned for South Street Seaport


    By DAVID W. DUNLAP
    Published: June 18, 2008

    Conceding the failure of the South Street Seaport pier as a “festival marketplace” — these days, it is not much more than a waterfront mall — its owners plan to replace it with a mixed-use project including a 42-story, 495-foot apartment and hotel tower, wrapped in a terra-cotta exoskeleton and rising from new pilings in the East River.

    Though other high-profile developments along the East River have foundered, most notably Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum and Santiago Calatrava’s apartment tower of stacked cubes, the seaport plan speaks to the undiminished allure of riverfront sites and of developers’ faith that megaprojects can inject new life into, and create profit out of, areas where other visions have failed.

    The project also amounts to an abandonment of the original vision for Pier 17, which the Rouse Company opened to much fanfare in 1985. It now feels like a run-down, sometimes eerily unpopulated attraction to which its neighbors seldom venture.

    “We need to change what the South Street Seaport means in New Yorkers’ minds,” said Michael H. McNaughton, vice president of asset management at General Growth Properties, which bought the Rouse Company in 2004 and now controls the seaport retail space. “It is going to change dramatically from a place where people in tourist buses buy Yankee T-shirts and bonsai trees.”

    There are those who say that General Growth, and Rouse before it, brought on their own troubles at Pier 17. A lawsuit against the developers by 18 retail tenants — stores and restaurants — is now working its way through State Supreme Court in Manhattan. “We’re sort of in their way,” said a lawyer for the tenants, Richard B. Feldman, of Rosenberg Feldman Smith.

    The tenants have charged Rouse and General Growth with failing to market, promote and maintain the seaport; with allowing the Pier 17 building to fall into disrepair through lack of maintenance; and with cutting back on the security staff.

    “They were, it seems, deliberately allowing the seaport and Pier 17 to deteriorate in order to move out the tenants so as to have a clear field to redevelop the pier,” said John O’Kelly, the lawyer who represented tenants in earlier cases.

    Mr. McNaughton responded: “In this rent dispute, dating back to the days of Rouse, this group of tenants has had significant claims dismissed by the courts. We believe all of their claims are baseless.”

    General Growth, based in Chicago, would build the 42-story tower at the foot of Pier 17, on the site of two buildings once occupied by the Fulton Fish Market: the Tin Building, from the 19th century, which would be moved to the end of Pier 17, and a more recent market building, which would be razed.

    On Pier 17, in place of the three-level shopping center that now covers almost the entire pier, General Growth would build a cluster of two-story retail buildings and a four- and six-story hotel, wrapped in an esplanade and crisscrossed by a grid of walkways, many of the paths meeting at a plaza in the middle of the pier, in front of the restored and relocated Tin Building.

    “Even though we’re known as a mall company, this is unquestionably a site that is a candidate for de-malling,” Mr. McNaughton said. “With the Fulton Fish Market moving away, it gave us a wonderful opportunity for a blank canvas. When the project was built, there wasn’t a community to connect to. There is now.”

    It remains to be seen how receptive that community will be to a project that includes a tower over water, dominating many vistas of the East River waterfront. There are numerous regulatory hurdles for the project to clear at the federal, state and city levels. General Growth is attempting a Manhattan debut in an unsteady economy, with a complex project that would tax even the most experienced New York developer. Mr. McNaughton declined to estimate the cost.

    Deputy Mayor Robert C. Lieber said the Bloomberg administration strongly supported the project as an extension of its own efforts to revitalize Lower Manhattan, to link downtown’s East and West Sides along Fulton Street and to invigorate the underused East River waterfront.

    “The South Street Seaport represents a great location to accommodate and capture that kind of growth,” Mr. Lieber said.

    The city leases the pier and the inland portion of the South Street Seaport retail complex to General Growth.

    Allowing that there would be “a lot of conversations” and probably some modifications before the project could be approved by all the regulatory bodies involved, Mr. Lieber said, “We’re optimistic it’s going to get done.”

    The president of the Alliance for Downtown New York, Elizabeth H. Berger, praised the project for the views it would open from inland blocks, especially along Beekman Street; the creation of both open space and retail space; and the contemporary quality of the architecture — “not some Disneyfied version of what South Street may have looked like at one time.”

    Maggie Boepple, the president of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, applauded the creation of spaces that would be available for dance performances and other artistic programs. (She was also quick to note that a General Growth executive was about to join the council’s board.)

    Ms. Boepple allowed that the tower would be big and that building it directly over the river was not necessarily in the best interest of overall planning. But, she said: “From their perspective, they have to make money. From my perspective — in moving the Tin Building to the end of the pier, creating the piazzas and respecting the historic district, I think that mitigates that.”

    The project is designed by SHoP Architects, which is also working on the overall plan to redevelop the East River waterfront. Gregg Pasquarelli, a principal, said that approval would be needed for the tower, which would otherwise be limited by the city’s zoning rules to 350 feet.

    “We felt the important thing was to make it as slender as possible,” Mr. Pasquarelli said, adding that the tower would not block views of the Brooklyn Bridge for any current downtown residents.

    Mr. Pasquarelli said the design of the buildings was inspired by ships’ rigging, cables, wharves, dry docks, sails, masts and spars. The intent of the exoskeleton and of the alternating building volumes within it, he said, was to lessen the sense of bulk.

    Mr. McNaughton said the project would essentially take the bulk of the Pier 17 mall and stand it upright, thereby freeing a good deal of space on the pier and “giving it back to the community.”

    Scott M. Stringer, the Manhattan borough president, predicted a “very challenging land-use process.” He declined to take a position one way or another before hearing from constituents.

    But speaking of the seaport, he added, “I do think it’s time that we took something that is right out of the ’80s and bring it into the 21st century.”

    Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company

  3. #18

    Thumbs up

    Sounds very promising.

  4. #19
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    This rendering came with the article I just posted above (the Times has an inexplicable habit of delaying the posting of images until after the article comes out first).



    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . SHoP Architects
    A rendering of part of the mixed-use development that would replace the current mall on Pier 17.

  5. #20

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    This is what Curbed said in 2007


    Pier 17 Update: 'No Way in Hell GGP Gets a Tower'

    Friday, February 23, 2007, by Joshua


    Article and previous design HERE

  6. #21

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    here's a tiny render of the tower

  7. #22

  8. #23

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    nice. what is the building directly behind the seaport tower? i know i have seen that rendering before.

    and what about the one behind and to the left?

  9. #24
    Last edited by Derek2k3; June 18th, 2008 at 11:04 AM.

  10. #25

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    i hope beekman looks that good at night

  11. #26
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    ^ Let's post that here.

    Shop-ing at the Seaport
    SHoP's proposal for South Street Seaport would reintegrate the historic district into its surrounding neighborhood



    Anne Guiney
    06.18.2008

    Though it has one of the city’s iconic postcard views, the South Street Seaport falls into that category of attractions that many New Yorkers confess they rarely visit, much like the top of the Empire State Building or the Statue of Liberty.

    Yet Lower Manhattan is undergoing enormous changes, from the growth of the residential district around Wall Street, the planned transit hub at Fulton Street, to, of course, the World Trade Center site, so the Seaport’s leaseholder, General Growth Properties (GGP), has just announced a proposal to transform the area.

    The plan involves rebuilding much of the 19th-century structure of Pier 17 and replacing the 1982 enclosed mall with a series of smaller retail, hotel, and event buildings arranged around several public open spaces and promenades.

    According to Gregg Pasqarelli of SHoP, the firm hired to design the project, SHoP and GGP wanted to conceive of the new Seaport not as a distinct megaproject but as the extension of a neighborhood.

    “The festival marketplace was just right for its time, and was the cutting edge of preservationist thinking,” he explained.

    “Today, the city as a whole is a festival marketplace, and you don’t need to seal off parts anymore. If [original developer] Rouse were to approach the city today with the same project, I’m not sure they’d get approval.”


    GGP approached SHoP after seeing its work on the surrounding city-commissioned East River Waterfront plan, which was initially released in February of last year.

    One feature of that plan is the construction of retail and community buildings underneath the FDR drive, currently not much more than a dark parking lot for buses. These are in turn incorporated into the thinking and design for the GGP Seaport project, in order to create a more coherent and integrated approach to the waterfront.






    SHoP's proposal for the South Street Seaport includes a 42-story, 495-foot tower (Top) and a public plaza (Above) approximately the size of Bryant Park.


    The scope of SHoP’s design is significant, and includes both new—and very contemporary—construction, as well as the restoration and move of the Tin Building, the last remaining structure with historical interest on the site of the Fulton Fish Market.

    Though it has been mostly gutted and incorporated into the 1983 shopping mall, the structure would be restored to the extent possible on the exterior, then moved into the historic district on Pier 17. A 286-room hotel and 78-unit residential building would go up on its site. While the tower’s floor-area-ratio of 17 is as-of-right, it rises 495 feet instead of the permissible 350.

    Pasquarelli explained that they decided to build taller to maximize surrounding open space and to reduce bulk and maintain views. There is also likely to be some affordable housing in the mix: Project manager Thorsten Kiefer said that one possibility would be to create a mix of affordable and market-rate housing in the restored buildings on Schermerhorn Row, though that plan is still in the germinal phase.

    The tower’s design is striking. Three stacked glass volumes are enclosed in an open, lattice-like exoskeletal mesh. (Note to would-be climbers: Each diamond-shaped opening in the structure spans several floors, so it won’t be easy to clamber up.) Pasquarelli described the exoskeleton as loosely inspired by the patterns of the old fishing nets once so prevalent there, but more than that, as a contemporary reinterpretation of the waterfront technologies of pier, cable, and mast.

    Like any major project, the GGP/SHoP proposal will face a series of regulatory hurdles, including the Uniform Land Use Review Process, or ULURP, approval by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, the New York City Arts Commission, Community Board 1, and the Department of City Planning.

    David Vermillion, a spokesperson for GGP, explained that the company is well aware of the enormous efforts of various city agencies to improve the quality of and access to the waterfront, and decided that the time was right to reimagine their stake in it, approaching SHoP specifically in order to coordinate efforts.

    Vermillion and GGP may be on to something, because for the last several years, now- former deputy mayor Dan Doctoroff staunchly advocated the development of a harbor district, which would include Ellis Island, Governors Island, the revitalized East River Waterfront, Battery Park City, and Brooklyn Bridge Park, and be connected via ferry service.

    That vision of the waterfront as an integrated and accessible whole is a compelling one, but will need the support and participation from the private sector as well. Pasquarelli, for one, is cautiously hopeful: “It is really extraordinary to see a situation like this, where the city is putting energy and money into reconnecting people to the waterfront, and a private company has decided to join in.”

    Copyright © 2003-2008 | The Architect's Newspaper, LLC.

  12. #27
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    I, too at first thought that tall mystery tower was 80 South St. but in this rendering, it looks to be in the interior and behind the waterfront towers, which of course deepens the mystery even more.



    By the way, check out the FT and 3WTC in the background as well.

  13. #28
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    More images from the project's website.

    The pier:


    The Site Plan:


    Uses:


    History Boundary of the Seaport District:


    Before/After:

  14. #29
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    More renderings and images...






  15. #30
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    Curbed has posted more images, but I can't get them to post here in the large format.

    This looks very good. I especially like the way they handle the boutique hotel "addition". It seems to float effortlessly above the shopping area, and the color blends in almost perfectly with the historic buildings to the west. I hope they give this the green light pronto.

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