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Thread: Silver Towers - by I.M. Pei

  1. #16
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Thumbs down

    As one walks along Bleeker coming from the west, you come up to this NYU nightmare and it's absolutely horrible. It's a cross between Brasilia and a prison.

  2. #17
    Forum Veteran TREPYE's Avatar
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    ^Agreed. Landmark this?



    Gimme a break.

    This is the crap that creates all that clutter in the landmarks office that prevents real landmarkable buildings from being deisgnated and protected.

  3. #18

  4. #19
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Seeing as how I've spent half my life within a couple of blocks of these three (and have some fondness for their brutality), I ask folks to consider this:

    Face it ... NYU is gong to build. But these will NOT be torn down. IMO it's better to Landmark them and preserve the "towers in the park" (which on this site is interesting -- except on cold windy days when the plaza is BRUTAL) rather than allow NYU to do in-fill between the towers, thereby losing the greenery and trees. Also not s good idea to allow anything tall on the corner of West Bway / Bleecker. The green spaces along LaGuardia between Houston & W 3rd should be preserved (it's ashame that it doesn't continue all the way up to Washington Square park on the west side of Bobst Library).

    I'd guess that both the Silvers and WSV are built-out to maximum existing FAR.

    Anyone know if that's the case?

    I'd rather they upzone the Coles site -- and build something tall on a base there, creating a streetwall along Bleecker / Mercer / Houston and which relates to the Silver trio. One of the "proposals" in the NYU pdf shows something like that with a large-ish tower rising at Houston / Mercer and another smaller tower rising at Bleecker / Mercer.

    With good architecture that could be a good plan.

  5. #20
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Don't expect anything nice coming out of NYU.

  6. #21

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    What is so funny to me, is that design-wise, these towers are on par with the new things on Bond. It is unquestionably great architecture.



  7. #22
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    Default To me it's more about context.

    They might look fine out in the Bronx, for example, but they are not suitable for a dense area like the central village. They are part and parcel with the Moses expansion of Houston St., just blast it through with no other consideration of the area.

  8. #23

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    I don't think anyone will dispute that this is bad urban planning. Such buildings would be built very differently today in the Village.

    And most likely, so would Lincoln Center, the Seagrams Building, the UN, the UN apartments, the Manhattan House apartments, etc...

    Rather than just dismissing them, it might be interesting to discover why Muschamp, Fortune Magazine, the American Institute of Architects (and etc.) unanimously consider them so highly. Or why Pei's similar towers-in-a-park in Philadelphia, have had landmark status for 20 years now.

    Are they all idiots?

  9. #24
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    Let's tear down a few square blocks in Florence and slap up a duplicate copy of this development and see how much everybody likes them.

  10. #25
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    >> snap <<


  11. #26

    Default Photographs of the Dead

    Though not necessarily removed in the 60s (much of it was), I created this little post to demonstrate some of the immeasurable losses suffered by New York City in recent decades.

    Singer Building, 1, 2, 3, 4,5, 6,7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12,13, 14

    Luxury Hotels of Europe, here, here, here, here, and here.

    The World Building--here and here--formerly located on Newspaper Row and once the world's tallest.

    The crowded majesty of the ghetto Lower East Side, here.

    The docks and excitement of West Street, here.

    Industrial Lower Manhattan, here and here.

  12. #27

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    The old stuff is gone. The Pei buildings are with us. They may or may not be better than what they replaced, but as Fabrizio insists, they are very high quality architecture, and almost certainly better than anything NYU might replace them with today.

    To compare them with public housing in the Bronx is like lumping Seagram in with all the other flattop curtain-wall boxes. If you can't see the difference ...

  13. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by stache View Post
    Let's tear down a few square blocks in Florence and slap up a duplicate copy of this development and see how much everybody likes them.
    Not really the point.

    What's done is done.

  14. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ablarc View Post

    To compare them with public housing in the Bronx is like lumping Seagram in with all the other flattop curtain-wall boxes.
    Who said anything about public housing? Do you think all of Bronx county is nothing but public housing?

  15. #30

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    For the record:

    A good portion of the center of Florence (on both sides of the Arno) is modern architecture. Nearly everthing you see in the fotos below is from the 50's and 60's:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/hazboy/1250871436/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/patrick...41901/sizes/o/
    With the excepton of the buildings in the far background and the stone structure along the left... everything is "new":
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/global-...ing/492289368/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/kane1173/423468579/

    >> snap left << >> snap right <<

    --

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