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Thread: 50 East 57th Street @ 432 Park Avenue (former Drake Hotel site)

  1. #121
    The Dude Abides
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fabrizio View Post
    "That form of capitalism" ...aid from "federal and state governments".... has also helped produce some of America's finest architecture.

    In NYC: the original WTC complex... love it or hate it , it was an iconic symbol of NYC... the view of it recognized around the world.

    How's about Lincoln Center and it's theatres....the UN complex ... and let's remember the private/public relationship of New York's great museum & library buildings.

    The great bridges, tunnels, the subway, the parks.... all great architecture too.

    Let's not forget the City Hall building. How about the Manhattan Municipal Building? "one of the largest governmental buildings in the world.".

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manhatt...cipal_Building

    And let's not forget this baby:

    http://www.anders.com/pictures/publi...%20City_sm.jpg

    And this is just NYC.

    ---
    I think you're really reaching here. Bridges, tunnels, and parks? Please - as if the government doesn't have and hasn't always had a monopoly on building those.

    On the Public Library (pretty much all private money): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astor_Library

    It's funny you found the need to make a list of the best. I couldn't even begin to make my own list. For starters: the great apartment buildings around Central Park. The grand-dame hotels (Plaza, St. Regis, etc.). Grand Central and Park Avenue. The great skyscrapers. The lofts of SoHo and Tribeca. The great old department stores. Need I go on?

    Of course, in your list, you conveniently left out such beauties as the Mitchell-Lama and other Moses-era housing projects. Fortress-like federal buildings. Airports. The New York Coliseum. All garbage. Let's face it: pretty much everything government-built post-Beaux-Arts era has been downright ugly, but we've still gotten plenty of beautiful private buildings despite Modernism, etc.

    Even the World Trade Center is no hallmark of architectural success. Haven't you been following along in those threads? The government building - the Freedom Tower - is widely regarded as the worst. The ones built by the private sector (Silverstein) - are on a higher playing field.

  2. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by investordude View Post
    Back in the real world, a government bureacracy on personal taste, aside from an unreasonable intrustion on artistic expression, would become a way to block projects until bribes were paid to city officials. It would also be expensive to implement and raise costs, driving builders out of the city.
    Pretty much right on. We already complain about how some developers use their political connections to get their projects through zoning approval and community review (see Trump, Ratner, Macklowe?). What'll happen when these new "minimum standards" get put in place? Guaranteed: the big guys will get around them, and the little guys will keep losing out. Such a system is destined to be unfair. If anything, the best solution to this problem would probably be to start some kind of annual architect re-certification program where a sample of every architect's work is reviewed to make sure he/she is representing their profession well.

    What else will happen when these standards are made into law? One of the first things to be addressed will doubtless be blank walls - an aspect of many new residentials/hotels that is already the product of zoning regulations. Who's really going to benefit from this? People who have nothing to do with the development industry: NIMBY's and pedestrians who get angry when they see bad architecture. Who's going to lose? Developers, who'll have to spend more money; prospective buyers and renters, who'll have to pay more to offset the costs; all residents, who will feel an additional increase in the price of housing. The city will probably lose out too: they'll be forced to increase the number of affordable units in new construction, and to do that, they'll give out more subsidies, more tax breaks, more 421a programs, etc.

    This is not a good idea. Someone brought up the example of San Francisco, which already has the highest (or second-highest) average cost of living in the country. I've been to San Fran twice, and their residential districts were nice. But the business district was nothing special, easily uglier than any chunk of Midtown or Downtown. It's not worth it.
    Last edited by pianoman11686; May 10th, 2007 at 06:11 PM.

  3. #123

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    June 1, 2007 -- Macklowe Properties will put up a new office building at the former Drake Hotel site, The Post has learned - rather than an apartment project or hotel as had been widely speculated.

    Insiders said the father-and-son team of Harry Macklowe and his son, Billy Macklowe, have decided on a commercial project with about 30 floors at Park Avenue and 56th Street, one of the world's most valuable corners.

    Although they had earlier considered a 70-story condo/hotel scheme, the shorter height will enable them to create larger floor plates required by office tenants.

    "Park Avenue is the best location for either an office or a residential building," said an industry analyst. "But Park Avenue, particularly below 57th Street, is especially prime for office space."

    The Macklowes are not ready to identify their architect, but are expected to file plans with the city Department of Buildings.

    As The Post first reported in January 2006, Macklowe Properties bought the 80 year-old Drake for around $440 million. It is now being demolished.

    The Macklowes subsequently purchased multiple properties on 57th Street to expand the project into an L-shape that will run from 56th to 57th streets.

    The Post's Lois Weiss reported in February that the Macklowes had yet to decide at the time whether the Drake site would be used for offices, apartments, a hotel, or some combination of those.
    Neither Billy Macklowe nor reps for Macklowe Properties returned calls yesterday.

    http://www.nypost.com/seven/06012007...eve_cuozzo.htm


  4. #124

  5. #125

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    Quote Originally Posted by londonlawyer View Post
    Macklowe atrocity rising at 510 Madison:
    Macklowe makes me sick. The little buildings on 57th that this creep is buying are little gems. Macklowe has no respect for NY's architecture or its history. He also is buying a block of beautiful, old townhouses on Lex and 73rd that he will raze.

    Moreover, based upon the banal structure he's building at 510 Madison, I guarantee that this will be a lame box of no more than 750 feet, if that. In fact, since it will be lame, this is one instance in which I support a shorter building since it will be less conspicuous on the skyline.
    [/QUOTE]

    I think I might be the reincarnation of Nostradamus. Notwithstanding the predictions of brain-dead Lois Weiss, I knew that a short, unspired box would rise on this site.

    Once again, given Macklowe's proclivity for cheap buildings, I am pleased that this building will be short and will not be visible on the sklyine.
    Last edited by londonlawyer; June 1st, 2007 at 01:45 PM.

  6. #126

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    I'm sure it will be a lovely box, perfectly befitting of Park Ave. Macklowe wouldn't dare take the opportunity to build something great or tall at such a prominent intersection.

  7. #127

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    sorry to post this, but.. 6/16


  8. #128

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    Construction workers should have their flags at half staff.

  9. #129
    Forum Veteran MidtownGuy's Avatar
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    that's INFURIATING

  10. #130

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    Quote Originally Posted by MidtownGuy View Post
    that's INFURIATING
    The loss of the townhouses on 57th St make this project even more intolerable.

  11. #131

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    Too many people don't care about old buildings -- for them it is a competition with Dubai or Hong Kong. So their philosophy is to build as at whatever price and where ever place. The only thing that matters is height -everything else is irrelevant. it is really sad.

  12. #132

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnFlint1985 View Post
    Too many people don't care about old buildings -- for them it is a competition with Dubai or Hong Kong. So their philosophy is to build as at whatever price and where ever place. The only thing that matters is height -everything else is irrelevant. it is really sad.
    I don't think that's true. The problem is that NY has greedy developers like Macklowe, Rosen, Gershon Barnett and Chang that care only about their profits and not about preserving the old buildings that make NYC great.

  13. #133

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    Quote Originally Posted by londonlawyer View Post
    I don't think that's true. The problem is that NY has greedy developers like Macklowe, Rosen, Gershon Barnett and Chang that care only about their profits and not about preserving the old buildings that make NYC great.
    That too plays a major role. But as I know from a different forum http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...t=96689&page=9 a lot of people like that this building is going to be demolished. Hard to believe -- watch. Check for yourselves.

  14. #134
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Thumbs down

    That forum is crass.

  15. #135

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    Well majority of people there don't like the idea of saving it. It is quite heated --it is actually quite funny, because I am probably the only one still telling my point of view. But seriously is there anything we can do to save it except talking about it? Any ideas. Please submit them.

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