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Thread: 740 Eighth Ave. (@ 46th) - Related

  1. #76

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    This is so sad. Is there honestly zero penalty for destroying an entire square block of buildings adjacent to Times Square and essentially turning it into urban blight? It seems like tons of other buildings went forward despite the economic crisis including the hotel on 44th. I see no excuse for this kind of behavior.

  2. #77
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Beyond the Demolition Permits, DOB shows no new applications for this site.

  3. #78

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    I guess for Platinum "southsiders" their view will remain protected for a short while longer...

    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    Beyond the Demolition Permits, DOB shows no new applications for this site.

  4. #79
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    there honestly zero penalty for destroying an entire square block of buildings adjacent to Times Square and essentially turning it into urban blight?
    urban blight, eh? Gives me an idea...

    The city and state have shown they're not shy about using eminent domain to seize blighted neighborhoods. They should condemn and seize properties like this one from developers who demolish buildings to create urban blight (if there aren't any creditors that plan on selling the property to recover unpaid debts, that is). In exercising its eminent domain powers the city should assess these properties at their value as if they were to remain undeveloped dirt lots, not their (higher) potential value from being built up.

    There should be a penalty to pay for stupidity on this scale. I'm talking about brain surgeons like Harry Macklowe and the executives at Related.

    This is just so wrong on so many levels--decreasing the city's housing and retail stock (which puts pressure on rents), destroying the cityscape, creating dangerous sidewalk conditions for passersby, encouraging automobile travel by increasing parking spaces....
    Last edited by Hamilton; November 14th, 2008 at 02:51 PM.

  5. #80
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    If a developer can't get money from creditors to build on a cleared lot then where would the developer find the money to pay government-imposed fines?

  6. #81

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    The transformation of NYC into the American hellish city of identical glass buildings and parking lots is complete! Empty lots are the most common thing in this city, nowadays, with hardly a block left without a gaping hole cutting through it. I am disgusted. We went from the greatest city in the world to something subpar over night.

  7. #82

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    ^ While I agree with your frustration, I don't agree with your exaggeration. Even now, New York probably has the fewest surface lots and "holes" in its density of any major city in America. The reason this lot is especially disgusting is because it is so massive and adjacent to 5 broadway theatres with major foot traffic. It cuts off Times Square with Hell's Kitchen and it makes the already gross 8th Avenue look even worse. I'd rather they put blue construction walls around the lot and plaster it with ads. It would look better than a chain-link fence. At least with the construction walls you could pretend something is happening behind them.

  8. #83
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Over 50% of the development site on and around 740 Eighth has been a parking lot for the past 25+ years.

    It's only because the classic old corner building came down (a plot which covers less than 25% of the site) that the existing parking lot is now more visible.

    I'm not defending parking lots pre se, but a nasty plywood wall encicrling that plot could be far worse than a newly-asphalted expanse with cars on it. Unless some clever folks paper over the plywood with good visuals (and not just ads) on a regular basis.

    Of course the better result would have been that the old buildings didn't come down, but were adaptively re-used for newer purposes. But that would require people with vision -- something sorely lacking in this case.

  9. #84

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    ^That isn't really correct. There was a parking lot there before but it took up maybe 25% (not 50%) of the current lot. Check back on the first few pages of this thread for an overhead view showing exactly where the parking was and where the buildings were. It wasn't just the 3 small buildings fronting 8th that were demolished. There were buildings lining 45th and 46th streets that were taken down as well. The old parking was an "L" shape with a small entrance on 8th and a small entrance on 46th. The reason a construction wall is better is because it gives the illusion of density and continuity at street level instead of looking like the city street grid just ends.

  10. #85

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    Here it is. Notice all the buildings on 45th that were destroyed too.

  11. #86
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Exactly! The map shows that about 50 % of the development site is parking.

    As can be seen the development site includes the large existing surface parking lot on 46th to the west of the Imperial Theater; it also includes the still standing multi-level parking structure to the south of that on 45th and the narrow stretch of surface parking just to the north of the Playwright bar on Eighth. So the previous parking area wasn't just an "L". But either way, the majority of the existing combined lots on the development site was covered by parking even before the 6 buildings (4 on 45th / 2 on Eighth) that were recently demolished came down. The parking was just less visible than it is now. Which is what makes it so nasty.

    Bottom line: we don't even know that the two newly-fenced and brick strewn areas will be taken over by parking (they'd need to get permits for that) or if they will sit fallow, just as the 11TS plot at Eighth / 42nd did for so long.

    It seems our only real disagreement is in regard to what would be better for the future: plywood walls or asphalt with cars.

  12. #87

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    I think my issue is what fronts the street, not what is behind buildings and away from view. The previous parking was broken up by a variety of buildings and there was no part of it that continued from one street to the other. Like you said, the void was hidden by the buildings that remained. Now you can actually walk from 45th to 46th through the lot.

  13. #88

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    Can someone post a photo of what the site looks like now?

  14. #89
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    here it is (a hole lot of nothin') ...

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  15. #90

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    It cries out for an impromptu Liza performance.

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