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Thread: Silver Towers - by I.M. Pei

  1. #196

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    They generally don't design in the modern style, a better comparison would be Emery Roth and Sons.

  2. #197

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    Their latest residential (this is luxury housing folks...):

    http://www.emporis.com/en/il/im/?id=395766

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    Trepye: the Silver Towers have much more in common with the pre-wars that you prefer, than do most of the residentials being built today.


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    Last edited by Fabrizio; February 20th, 2008 at 05:46 PM. Reason: clarity

  3. #198
    Forum Veteran TREPYE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fabrizio View Post
    Hey dude, I know you ain't trying to compare limestone to cement....

  4. #199
    Forum Veteran TREPYE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post
    I won't argue that anyone who dislikes University Plaza is wrong, but I object to the way some dismiss it as unimportant, or ordinary.
    Well they are definitely not landmarkable, IMO it will lower the bar.
    Last edited by TREPYE; February 20th, 2008 at 11:28 PM.

  5. #200
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    One scheme being floated by NYU for the east end (right, below) of the Silver Towers "superblock" ...

    University signs on to a pact to reduce its impact


    N.Y.U. is thinking about building a tower over its Coles Sports Center
    at the corner of Houston and Mercer Sts.

    Downtown Express
    By Albert Amateau
    February 22 - 28

    It could be the end of years of bitterness between New York University and its Village neighbors.

    Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and New York University President John Sexton on Jan. 30 signed what they characterized as “historic town-gown principles” that set guidelines for the future expansion of N.Y.U. for the next 25 years and take into account neighborhood concerns about the scale of development.

    The planning principles are the result of more than a year of meetings between N.Y.U., local elected officials and community associations in Stringer’s Community Task Force on N.Y.U. development.

    “Everyone came to the table with an agenda but also with an open mind,” said Stringer. “That allowed us to hammer out a set of principles that will serve the university’s need to expand to meet its academic needs and local residents’ desire for real input into development that directly affects their lives and their neighborhood,” he said at the Jan. 30 ceremony in the N.Y.U. School of Law across the street from the southeast corner of Washington Square Park.

    “I believe that today we are turning a corner toward a new and harmonious relationship between N.Y.U. and its neighborhood,” said Sexton. “This is a step to correct some of the errors of the past on both sides. Trust has begun to develop.”

    Under the new planning principles, the university, which projects a need for 6 million more square feet of new space for the coming years to 2031, will pursue reuse of existing buildings before building new ones and will actively pursue academic and residential centers outside the Washington Square area. In addition, the principles emphasize contextual development and commit to mitigating the impact of construction on the neighborhood. The principles also call for community consultation and for N.Y.U. support of community sustainability, including preservation of local retail business and affordable housing efforts.

    Elected officials who took part in the drafting of the principles include State Senators Tom Duane and Martin Connor, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Councilmembers Alan Gerson and Rosie Mendez, Assemblymembers Deborah Glick and Brian Kavanagh and Congressmember Jerrold Nadler.

    Community Boards 2 and 3 were involved in developing the principles, along with the American Institute of Architects, the Carmine St. Block Association, the Coalition to Save the East Village, the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, the Soho Alliance and the Noho Neighborhood Association. Other endorsers of the principles are the Greenwich Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce and the NoHo NY and the Village Alliance business improvement districts.

    “We on Community Board 2 have been grappling with N.Y.U. for 25 years, and this agreement may mean we’re beginning a more harmonious relationship,” said Brad Hoylman, C.B. 2 chairperson. He recalled the conflict seven years ago over the demolition of the Poe House on W. Third St. to make way for the Law School annex. Hoylman noted that Sexton, then the Law School’s dean, was instrumental in preserving the Poe House’s facade in the Law School annex.

    Andrew Berman, executive director of G.V.S.H.P., commended Stringer for organizing the Community Task Force and creating a dialogue between the public and N.Y.U.

    “Change is long overdue, and while not yet providing final resolution to all the society’s concerns about N.Y.U.’s ongoing expansion, we recognize that this is a first step which will hopefully lead to further progress,” Berman said. “We also expect that N.Y.U. will be accountable to not just the letter but the spirit of these principles.”

    Sexton said N.Y.U. is committed to maintaining New York City as the world’s greatest city and the city’s place as “an idea capital” of the nation and the world.

    N.Y.U.’s president contrasted the space that N.Y.U. has with the space available to Columbia University. The Columbia campus provides between 230 and 240 square feet of space per student, while N.Y.U. provides 95 square feet of space per student, Sexton said.

    “But we’ll make it work in a harmonious relationship with the community where we work and live,” he said.

  6. #201
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Default Looks good.

    I'm for just about anything that brings the street wall back to Houston. I walked along the eastern part of it a couple of weeks ago and even though the new buildings are not always the best, it does not feel as forlorn as it did before.

  7. #202

  8. #203

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    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    Sexton said N.Y.U. is committed to maintaining New York City as the world’s greatest city and the city’s place as “an idea capital” of the nation and the world.
    I understand he's also in favor of world peace, the eradication of poverty, and a cure for AIDS.

  9. #204

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    Quote Originally Posted by Downtown Express
    University signs on to a pact to reduce its impact


    N.Y.U. is thinking about building a tower over its Coles Sports Center
    at the corner of Houston and Mercer Sts.


    That's actually not a bad plan. I'd much rather see them build up the rec center site than the supermarket site.

  10. #205
    The Dude Abides
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    Default

    Good. This makes sense.

  11. #206

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    The Emir of NYU

    NYU president John Sexton has been promised a blank check to duplicate his university on a desert island in Abu Dhabi. The expansion will leave both campuses flush with petrodollars. But to many faculty, the deal amounts to a sellout.


    Within less than three years, NYU plans to more or less clone itself in Abu Dhabi, thereby becoming the first major U.S. research institution to open a complete liberal-arts university off American soil. It is a wildly ambitious project, far more grandiose than simply opening up a foreign branch or study-abroad program. Unlike any other major American university, NYU will treat its offshore campus as virtually equal to its New York campus. NYU Abu Dhabi students will be chosen by the same admissions procedure, and will graduate with the same degrees, as their Washington Square colleagues. Eventually, Sexton hopes that New York and Abu Dhabi will serve as two nodes for a global network of NYU programs and classes.

    http://nymag.com/news/features/46000/

  12. #207
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Default NYU Abu?

    OMG they're taking over the planet!

  13. #208

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    Quote Originally Posted by stache View Post
    OMG they're taking over the planet!
    Their just becoming Americanized/Westernized, their sort of like the Middle-East Hong Kong or Tokyo.

    Americanized/Westernized are ugly words... no disrespect.

  14. #209
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    This is not really a novel development. American universities have for a while now had major outposts all over the world. Yale and Johns Hopkins have huge schools in China. Georgetown, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon among others have satellite campuses in Doha. I'm actually surprised it took NYU this long to finalize its plans with Abu Dhabi. And it's not like they're the only ones: chalk up the Louvre and the Guggenheim to prestigious institutions having replicas built in the UAE.

  15. #210
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
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    N.Y.U. zeroes in on tower, plinth, ‘zipper’

    Above left and right, renderings of a fourth, larger tower for the Silver Towers superblock as conceived by
    N.Y.U.’s outside planning consultants.

    The “Plinth and Tower” concept plans, above left and right, for Washington Square Village show a new tower,
    a new lower building and a long, low plinth added to the complex’s courtyard, public access to which would be
    invited under this planning scenario.


    By Albert Amateau and Lincoln Anderson
    April 23 - 29, 2008

    At the fifth open house presentation on April 23 of the long-range plans for New York University’s development in the Village and beyond, the reaction of visitors varied from relief to anxiety.

    It was a relief for some residents of Washington Square Village that N.Y.U. now favors a plan that would keep the current residential buildings along W. Third and Bleecker Sts., but the proposal to replace the complex’s center courtyard with a one-or-two-story building with a public green space on top provoked concern.

    “I’m glad they’re not going to demolish Washington Square Village, but they do plan to take away some of the apartments on the first and second floors facing the courtyard,” said Sandra Schicktman, a Washington Square Village resident. “I live on the first floor facing the courtyard and I what to know what will happen. I want to have the same rooms I have now,” she said.

    David Reck, chairperson of Community Board 2’s Zoning and Housing Committee, said that it was “a bad idea” to build in the Washington Square Village courtyard. “I can’t believe they’re thinking about that,” he said. “It’s the last option they should consider.”

    But Reck said the presentation last week marked a positive turning point in the university’s engagement with the community.

    “Of course it needs more effort. They [N.Y.U.] have a lot to overcome,” he said.

    Reck, however, was concerned about the N.Y.U. proposal to transfer development rights from its Morton Williams supermarket site at the corner of LaGuardia Pl. and Bleecker St. to the Silver Towers site to accommodate a fourth high-rise tower in the complex. The plan envisions the eventual demolition of the supermarket and its replacement by a public open space.

    “The supermarket is a vital amenity in the neighborhood,” Reck said.

    The new open space on the former supermarket site would accommodate uses displaced by N.Y.U.’s redevelopment of the superblocks, such as the Mercer St. dog run and any community gardens affected, according to N.Y.U.

    The proposed fourth tower for the Silver Towers complex was also a sore point with Andrew Berman, director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. He pointed out that the Landmarks Preservation Commission is considering the Silver superblock, with its three towers designed by I.M. Pei, for designation as a city landmark.

    “The fourth tower is completely inappropriate; it will never be approved,” Berman predicted. “The whole idea of landmarking the I.M. Pei towers is that they’re in a wonderful space,” he added.

    N.Y.U. owns the two superblocks on which Washington Square Village and the Silver Towers, along with 505 LaGuardia Pl. — a non-N.Y.U. residence — are located.

    Barbara Quart, a Washington Place resident, was incensed about one option in the plan to limit auto traffic on Washington Pl. between Broadway and Washington Square Park.

    “We fought against a proposal to pedestrianize the street in 1992 when they tried it for a while and it was a disaster,” Quart said. “The traffic-free idea is really an N.Y.U. idea to take possession of the street and the park,” Quart said.

    Martin Tessler, a former Community Board 2 member and a Washington Pl. resident, was worried that greening Washington Pl. would create a public mall with adverse impacts on residents of the three blocks.

    “What’s going to happen between now and 2031?” asked Tessler, adding, “N.Y.U. has to come to grips with the issue of phasing all this development.”

    The NYU Plans 2031 were developed over the past nine months with a team of planning and architecture consultants, including SMWM of San Francisco, Grimshaw Architects, Toshiko Mori Architect and Olin Partnership.

    The plans are based on the assumption the university will need 6 million square feet of new space in the next 23 years. Up to 3.6 million square feet can be fit into the university’s core Village campus area centered on Washington Square Park, the planners concluded. Other potential growth areas include the hospital corridor along First Ave. between 24th and 34th Sts.; Downtown Brooklyn around Polytechnic University campus, which N.Y.U. is in the process of acquiring, and Governors Island.

    In addition, the city’s Economic Development Corporation had been “pushing” N.Y.U. to look at expanding in Long Island City, according to Alicia Hurley, N.Y.U. associate vice president for government and community relations. However, she said, the university doesn’t feel Long Island City is developed enough residentially as of now to be a fitting expansion area for N.Y.U.

    At the same time, the university and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer’s Community Task Force on N.Y.U. Development agreed on a set of planning principles for development in the larger area between 18th and Canal Sts. and from between First Ave. on the east and a rough line on the west along West St. and Greenwich Sts. and Eighth Ave., which N.Y.U. terms “the neighborhood.”

    The Coles Sports Center between Greene and Mercer Sts. from Houston to Bleecker Sts. also would be the site of new development, with retail space on the now stark Houston St. frontage in a new zigzagging structure with stepped-back heights. The lower floors could be for academic use with residential or office space on the higher-up, smaller floors. The planners refer to the new structure’s facade as being shaped like “a zipper.”

    The plan for the fourth tower in the Silver complex just west of Coles would be taller than the existing buildings and would be aligned so that, like the other three, it would not obstruct views from apartments in existing buildings in the complex.

    About 125,000 square feet of air rights would be transferred from the Morton Williams site — which N.Y.U. purchased several years ago for more than $20 million — and shifted just to the east for the new tower, which would be a total of 200,000 square feet to 300,000 square feet in size. Because of its smaller floor plates, the new building would be more suited to some sort of N.Y.U. residential use, according to university officials.

    The Washington Square Village courtyard redevelopment is proposed as a plinth and tower concept, with the new one-or-two-story plinth and underground space in the courtyard for academic use, a three-story pavilion on the LaGuardia Pl. side and a high-rise academic tower on Mercer St. side. The park on top of the plinth would be publicly accessible from ramps from LaGuardia Pl. and Mercer St., according to the plan.

    Demolishing the current Washington Square Village complex right now, or even within the 2031 timeframe, doesn’t make sense on several levels, according to N.Y.U. officials. Ideally, the site would be razed to create space for new academic facilities and a large public open green space, but this would require relocating all the complex’s residents. Such a scheme realistically probably could not be undertaken until at least 2051 or 2081, university officials said.

    Hurley added that a recent presentation to Washington Square Village tenants about the demolition option “didn’t go over well.”

    The Landmarks Preservation Commission hearing on Silver Towers could be held in June. By the autumn of this year the university expects to make a final decision on the options it intends to pursue.

    “The designs are intended to be flexible, to create a framework for future development, but not to be proscriptive about the exact shape or program for that development,” said the statement the university issued with the plans last week. “The needs of N.Y.U. will change over the next 25 years in ways no plan can entirely foresee,” the statement cautioned.

    For example, the N.Y.U. officials said, the university doesn’t even know if it wants or needs a new residential tower on the Silver Towers superblock. And financial factors will also govern what N.Y.U. can build.

    The plans must go through an approval process that includes Community Board 2, the City Planning Commission, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Parks and Recreation and the City Council, as well as the Landmarks Commission.


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