View Poll Results: Do you support the development 53 West 53rd Street?

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  • Yes. This future New York landmark should be fast tracked through the approval process.

    101 98.06%
  • No.

    2 1.94%
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Thread: 53 West 53rd Street Petition (Build the MOMA Spire)

  1. #211

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    Post general items concerning the project here.

    Use this thread only for information regarding the project's path to (I hope) acceptance
    .

  2. #212
    Forum Veteran TREPYE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by antinimby View Post
    Where a 75-Story Tower Blends Right In

    By Justin Davidson

    Yet preservation is about guiding the future more than it is about gripping the past, and it makes no sense to quash this plan in the expectation of a duller, more modest alternative.

    Copyright © 2008, New York Media Holdings LLC
    What a brilliant and insightful statement.

    These CB people should take a step back and redefine what contextualism is in their skewered POV. The reason it was preserved was not only because it was historic, but also it was beautiful. Thus indeed, contextualism is as much about history as it is preserving not such much the actual structure but the style that was considered by most appealing.

    In this case after many years and layers of modernism piled on top of these Churches' steeples (St Thomas, St Patrick's) hiding them and entrenching them deep and into the NYC Silhouette here comes this Gothic tower considerately designed by Nouvell and revives what was once a proud architectural style. It soars up way above the weeds of modernist machines of profit to give the NYC skyline its once charmed appeal just as Gothic steeples used to do.

  3. #213
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    Wink

    ^To amend my above post I would like to share a great quote I found by Fabrizio that adequately describes what type of charm this tower will bring back to NYC...

    Quote Originally Posted by Fabrizio View Post
    But do find a skyline view of lower manhattan from the 1930´s.... NYC was unique in all the world.... NYC looked at once futuristic and ancient... it seemed, from a distance, to have been designed by one hand. The skyline had culture".

  4. #214

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    Excellent points TREPYE. You've touched upon a valid and potent line of criticism. To expand a bit, I would say that there is a prevailing view that preservation is a kind of piety, not to architectural greatness, or even significant history, but to the past itself. You see, as the the religion is practiced, old things have virtue simply by being old, and the present and future can only bring things which will destroy the inherent and undeniable goodness that only the past can bestow.

    This reverent impulse is strongly encouraged within our social and cultural memory, since after all, it is the method by which hegemony is practiced, expressed, and exercised. It is simply the basest form of selfish conservatism, pulling the ladder up after oneself.

    There is another unique angle to this preservationist opposition story, and that is the role of MOMA as a perennial challenger to the old, established, and accepted in art and in NY since its inception. I'm glad the institution is still poking fingers in eyes for the sake of advancement and progress.

  5. #215
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    Default Nouvel's MoMa tower

    A skyscraper planned next to the Museum of Modern Art and designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Jean Nouvel passed a big obstacle today. The Landmark Preservation Commission approved the transfer of development rights from two landmarked buildings on Fifth Avenue, the University Club and St. Thomas Church. The commission also ruled that the Nouvel tower would have no effect on either the club or the church. The proposed 75-story hotel-condo at 53 West 53rd Street now moves to the city's land-review process. Neighborhood residents have expressed concern about the height of the tower, which would reach higher than the Chrysler Building.

  6. #216

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    Excellent news. Who do we now need to lobby to make sure there is no hold-up with the ULURP?

  7. #217

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    Methinks we'll need to stay on our guard to make sure this gets through. Here's an excerpt from a write-up about the LPC meeting the other night:

    Commissioner Pablo Vengoechea expressed a certain shared discontent that the commission did not have more influence on Nouvel’s tower. “I agree that there is no real impact from the tower on the landmarks,” he said. “But I would hope, however, that City Planning engages the urbanistic questions that have been raised in the testimony.”



    The reaction, both from the development team and the audience, was subdued, but many residents vented their anger at the commission afterwards. “The decision was a gross misjustice,” said Charles Steinberg, a resident of 54th Street across from the Museum. “They talk about preservation while they destroy a very valuable, and valued, neighborhood.”



    “This is not over,” Veronika Conant, president of the 54th-55th Street Block Association, declared as she left the commission.


    http://www.archpaper.com/e-board_rev.asp?News_ID=1672

  8. #218
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eugenius View Post
    Excellent news. Who do we now need to lobby to make sure there is no hold-up with the ULURP?
    The Department of City Planning.

    The City Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on this application probably next month (either the 4th or the 18th of June).

    As soon as the date is confirmed, I'll post it here.

  9. #219
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    Nouvel Tower Gets the Nod Of City’s Landmarks Panel



    By PETER KIEFER, Staff Reporter of the Sun | May 14, 2008

    A planned 75-story glass condominium tower adjacent to the Museum of Modern Art has gained the key approval of the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission.

    The landmarks commissioners yesterday unanimously approved the transfer of development rights from two landmarks on Fifth Avenue, the University Club and St. Thomas Church, to a site near Sixth Avenue formerly owned by MoMA, more than 500 feet to the west, where the new tower is scheduled to rise.

    The West 53rd Street project has generated particular interest in part due to its scale and its architect, Jean Nouvel, who recently won the most prestigious award in his field, the Pritzker Prize.

    The commission effectively decided that the development rights transfer would not have a negative impact on the landmarked buildings and that the proposal instead would aid the restoration of the University Club and St. Thomas Church.

    The approval establishes a five-year maintenance plan for both of the landmarked buildings.

    The project’s developer, Hines, still needs several waivers from the city’s Planning Commission and final approval from the City Council.

    The president of the West 54th and 55th Street Block Association, Veronika Conant, said after the hearing that the commission yielded to the desires of the developer.

    “We are deeply disappointed,” she said. “We were hoping that the landmarks commission would consider our points.”

    Ms. Conant said the tower would not be in “harmony” with the surrounding neighborhood and that neither the University Club nor St. Thomas Church were in need of additional protections.

    In their comments, a number of the commissioners referred to the limited scope of their decision and asked the Planning Commission to weigh the issues surrounding the tower, which has been criticized for its height and its mid-block location on a side street, rather than an avenue.

    © 2008 The New York Sun

  10. #220
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    That ^ last paragraph is what concerns me most.

  11. #221

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    If the two structures weren't landmarked, this tower could be built as of right, correct? The tower isn't breaking any height limits, contextual rules, or any zoning law preventing development rights from being transferred to mid-block sites.

    City planning should base their decision solely on how the tower will impact the landmarks...not the adverse impact on the entire block or neighborhood.

  12. #222

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    I dont think that the city planning considers the landmarks, i think that they leave that to LPC.

  13. #223

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derek2k3 View Post
    If the two structures weren't landmarked, this tower could be built as of right, correct?
    The tower is using transferred air-rights. CP is involved because zoning is being modified; it would be the same if the two buildings were not landmarked.

    LPC only got involved because of the landmark status of the buildings. That's what they ruled on.

  14. #224
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    Thumbs up

    Brilliant news!

    I am still amazed as to how we have to beg and reason for the privilege of having this incredible tower...

    Now to business....

    Now whats the angle for the Planning commission letters? Methinks perhaps we should try justify these urbanistic concerns fueled by its mid block location. Couple to begin with:

    • Tower is very close to an avenue
    • It is flanked by two streets thus increasing vehicular accessibility
    • Square footage is stretched out over a taller tower; there are several towers of similar volume that are located at mid block (This may need further confirmations)
    Thats all I can think of for now, I will amend later on.

  15. #225
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    Any updates on this????

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