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Thread: Washington Square Area Development

  1. #61
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Another bit of Hotel Holley memorabilia in the Hotel Thread

  2. #62
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    A 1915 NY Times article on a real estate transaction,
    including the site of the Hotel Holley across from
    Washington Square Park ...

    THE REAL ESTATE FIELD

    Upper Manhattan Apartment Block Front
    in Deal for Washington Square Corner,
    with Resale of Latter for Hotel Addition

    -- $200,000 Purchase in Long Island City

    -- Bronx and Brooklyn Buyers.

    NY TIMES
    April 28, 1915

    Considerable activity characterized the realty market yesterday. In Manhattan the chief transaction involved the purchase of two new apartment houses in upper Manhattan by Mrs. Anne Rogers Benjamin, daughter of the late H. H. Rogers of the Standard Oil Company, giving in trade a corner on Washington Square which was almost immediately resold ...

    ... In part payment Mrs. Benjamin gave the six three- and four-story dwellings at 33 and 34 Washington Square West and 64 to 70 Washington Place, forming the southwest corner, a plot 55 on the Square by 128. Most of it has been owned by the Benjamin family for over forty years.

    The resale of this Washington Square plot has been closed to Frederick D.Fricke, treasurer of the Excelsior Brewing Company of Brooklyn. Mr. Fricke owns the adjoining property covered by the Hotel Holley at 35 Washington Square West, under lease to Knott Brothers. Mr. Fricke is planning to alter his newly acquired houses at a cost of $50,000, by converting them into one building, which will be leased for 21-years by Knott Brothers as an addition to the Hotel Holley.

    Upon the acquisiton of the corner the Knott Brothers will control a plot 100 by 128. The corner building will be used for the main dining room, with an Italian roof garden on top.

    FULL Article [pdf]

  3. #63
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    The Hotel Holley was named after steel manufacturer Alexander Lyman Holley, whose memorial statue, until just last month, sat to the west of the fountain in Washington Square Park. The Holley Statue was rededicated in 1999. It will be relocated within the Park during the current reconstruction.





  4. #64

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    That was a good find of information! Funny that I was thinking of "Holley" in terms of the plant, didn't make the connection to the sculpture in the park till now.

    There's another sculpture over on the EAST side of the park by the fountain... what's left of it... but I don't remember the name, thought for a bit it was this one but Holley is/was on the West end.
    The old Holley picture sure shows a much better condition monument than today, especially on the slab base which is all chipped, cracked and damaged.
    Always seems strange to me to see before and today photos 100 years apart and seeing the building or statue etc looking the same even if the surroundings changed. I can't help but go WOW, there it is 100 years ago, looks just like it does now.

  5. #65
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    In all the years I've walked past that Holley monument I never once registered the guy's name. So when I read that the Hotel Holley was named after the same guy it took more digging for me to get my bearings. If memory serves me well there was a time when the entire thing was covered in a thick coat of dirty white paint. And of course "smoke" central right in the vicinity of Holley.

    It's really not a sculpture that should be in the middle of a walkway (as its been for a long time on the main E <> W pathway). Seems originally it was placed at the edge of a planted area. That's as it should be. Maybe they'll fix that during the rehab.

  6. #66
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Default Center for Academic and Spiritual Life


    N.Y.U. reveals plan for spiritual center on Washington Sq.


    N.Y.U.’s proposed Center for Academic and Spiritual Life would have a Catholic Center on its first floor and a scrim-like terra cotta exterior, above. The site has an F.A.R. of 6.5. An “as-of-right” option, below left and bottom left, with a 5.5 F.A.R. would require a narrow building with many setbacks. (A 6.5 F.A.R. option would be so narrow, N.Y.U. didn’t even include a design of it.) N.Y.U.’s preferred option, below right and bottom right, at 4.9 F.A.R. is squatter.




    By Lincoln Anderson

    Unveiling what will be New York University students’ future on-campus faith facility — plus a flexible, multiuse space for classrooms and music performances and rehearsals — N.Y.U. released plans on Tuesday for its new Center for Academic and Spiritual Life. The building, to be built at Thompson St. and Washington Square South, will replace the former N.Y.U. Catholic Center, which was recently razed to make way for the project.

    The proposal is for a building of 61,000 square feet, 89 feet tall with six stories. Notably, N.Y.U.’s design doesn’t use all the space allowed under the property’s zoning. Zoning permits a structure with a floor area ratio, or F.A.R., of up to 6.5, but N.Y.U.’s plan only uses 4.9 F.A.R. Roughly speaking, by forgoing 1.6 F.A.R. — which translates into 18,000 square feet — the building would be about one story lower.

    Alicia Hurley, N.Y.U. vice president of government affairs and community engagement, said the university is building smaller than the zoning allows as part of its new, more conscientious approach to development under its N.Y.U. Plans 2031 initiative.

    “It’s a commitment to try to preserve the [view of the] sky and working to build a building that was the right building for the spot,” she said.

    Like N.Y.U.’s Kimmel Center just to its east, the Center for Academic and Spiritual Life will be visible through the Washington Square Arch when viewed from Fifth Ave., though it will only be about half as tall as Kimmel. The new center, as proposed, will be about equal in height to the Judson Church campanile.

    N.Y.U. will need a variance from the Board of Standards and Appeals to build the design, since it doesn’t conform with current setback and open-space requirements. A so-called as-of-right building under zoning would be impractical for N.Y.U., since, with the required setbacks, it would become increasingly narrow as it went up, leading to floor plates that would be so small they would be unusable for N.Y.U.’s purposes. The wider floor plates in the lower and squatter building in N.Y.U.’s design are better suited to the university’s program needs.

    The proposed design extends the building out to the street wall, which is consistent with many of the other buildings on Washington Square South, the university notes.




    N.Y.U. purchased the cleared site from the Catholic Archdiocese of New York in May, after the archdiocese had finished demolishing the building. Construction is scheduled to start this fall and finish in summer 2012. The end result will be an energy-efficient LEED Silver-rated building, which will also be connected on most floors to the adjacent Kimmel Center.

    On the building’s first floor will be a new Catholic Center at N.Y.U., owned and operated by the archdiocese. As Hurley described it, it will be “an open, public church.”

    The new center will also house N.Y.U.’s four chaplains — Jewish, Protestant, Catholic and Muslim — together for the first time at the same location.

    Hurley said the basic idea of the building’s multiuse design is to provide space for prayer, but also not to have this space sit idle at other times. The project will have flexible spaces, but also take into consideration various users’ specific needs.

    “We do know that our Muslim population does have certain requirements,” Hurley said. “They need to wash their feet, so they need different structures, not just a bathroom. The site will be sensitive to that. … Large orchestra rooms will be soundproofed.” However, Hurley added, “It’s not going to be just like loft space — there will be many rooms per floor.”

    A unique feature of the building’s exterior — which Hurley said isn’t really conveyed fully in the current renderings — is that it will be scrim-like.

    “It’s meant to be terra cotta with leaf-like cutouts,” she explained. The current computer renderings make the building’s exterior seem more opaque than it actually will be, she said.

    “It should end up looking a bit more open, transparent,” Hurley said.

    Over all, the design is intended to be “subtle and elegant,” Hurley said. The look was influenced by and intended to be contextual with Judson Church, and not Kimmel, she noted.

    The plan will be submitted to the B.S.A. this month, and also presented for review at the Tues., June 16, meeting of Community Board 2’s Arts and Institutions Committee. Next month, C.B. 2’s Zoning Committee will review the proposal.

    Giving his initial reaction to the project, Brad Hoylman, C.B. 2 chairperson, said, “I’m glad that N.Y.U. apparently recognizes that proposing a new building on the perimeter of Washington Square Park is an extremely sensitive issue to the community. After the battle over Kimmel Center, which was a low point in N.Y.U.-community relations, I think the community can appreciate the fact that the university is proposing to build a smaller building than it could have otherwise.

    “N.Y.U. is also discussing factors, such as views through Washington Square Arch and context to Judson Church, that they wouldn’t have years ago,” Hoylman added. “I’m sure the community will have thoughts about the design, materials and other features of the proposed building that I am looking forward to hearing.”

    Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, said his society’s preservation and design committees have to review N.Y.U.’s design more thoroughly, and that he was withholding his verdict till then. However, he said he thinks N.Y.U. is trying to “sweeten the pot” by forgoing some F.A.R. in order to get a variance from the B.S.A. to build a squatter building with larger floor plates.

    “A lower, fatter building may be in the community’s interests, as well,” he noted. “The as-of-right design is not a good fit for the neighborhood or N.Y.U. Here is the rare case where N.Y.U. needs public approval to build what it wants to build. It may be a case where N.Y.U.’s self-interest and the interests of the community may — and I want to emphasize ‘may’ — intersect.”

    Berman said he hopes N.Y.U. will make a binding commitment to never use the unused F.A.R. from the Spiritual Life center in the future, “that they won’t come back in a few years to add stories” on top of the building.

    As for the new building’s design, Berman said, “It’s got the Kimmel Center next door, which could make anything look good. But it’s also got the Judson Memorial Church across the street, which is one of the city’s great historic landmarks.”

    http://www.thevillager.com/villager_...vealsplan.html

  7. #67
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    The "preferred option" is a squat little chunky box.


  8. #68
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    Amazing that a school like NYU has such a tired architectural vision.

  9. #69

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    That design is bleh. Why that color, is there a good-looking mustard colored building in the city?
    This and Kimmel belong next to their 12th street dorm abomination.

    [



    Also, I much preferred the as-of right envelope. The community got gypped.
    Last edited by Derek2k3; January 20th, 2010 at 11:03 PM.

  10. #70
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    NYU didn't get their wish about cutting down the trees. They are still standing along the east side of Thompson and the foundation dig out is moving ahead. It was decided that it is better to keep the trees and risk the bad outcome but hope for the best rather than just pull them out now.

  11. #71

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derek2k3 View Post
    Why that color, is there a good-looking mustard colored building in the city?
    The choice of terra cotta for cladding may be the 'inspiration' for the color. The spectacular and vibrant terra cotta at 37 Washington Square West is rather mustardy. Also hinting at the reference is the pierced treatment of the facade which is superficially rather neo-moorish, err... neo-Islamic (Arab?) in character (whatever that means).


    17-NOV-2005 | Hubert J Steed

  12. #72
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    NYU Confuses Preservationists With Plan for Smaller Building

    January 22, 2010, by Sara

    Things are out of balance in the Village, where NYU is planning its Center for Academic and Spiritual Life at 58 Washington Square South. Perfect, because spiritual centers are all about restoring balance, right? Wrong! This one comes with a preservation controversy. The as-of-right zoning for the Washington Square South spot would allow NYU to build an 11-story building, but the ever-expansion-hungry NYU really wants to build something...smaller? Yup! The university has proposed a shorter, squatter design of only six stories, and the folks at the Greenwich VIllage Society for Historic Preservation aren't quite sure how to take the fact that their world is now completely upside-down. In its most recent newsletter, GVSHP tries to find the negative: "While the as-of-right building (without variances) would require multiple setbacks and be much taller and narrower, by seeking permission for no setbacks whatsoever NYU would place a large, squat building on narrow Thompson and West 3rd Streets which would shadow neighboring buildings...and loom over these low-scale streets." And if NYU's desire to slim down continues unchecked, what's next for its expansion plans?

    NYU Seeks Variance for New "Spiritual Center" Development [GVSHP]
    NYU's God-Fearing Washington Square South Plan Revealed [Curbed]

    http://curbed.com/archives/2010/01/2...r_building.php

  13. #73
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    NYU's Arborcide Complete on Thompson Street

    February 3, 2010, by Pete


    Thompson sans trees.




    (click to enlarge)

    NYU has declared its love for trees, stating that, "The University is aware how important trees are to the quality of life of the community," but that didn't stop them from chopping down four mature flowering pears on Thompson Street in order to make way for the new Center for Academic and Spiritual Life rising at 58 Washington Square South. Locals wanted to save the trees, but NYU pleaded their case and the treehuggers lost. Now there's room for the underground pipes that will connect the proposed house of faith with NYU's new Cogeneration Plant a few blocks to the east. NYU is pledging to restore the greenery, and the building itself will be a tribute to the lost souls. According to the wordsmiths at NYU, "The symbol of the tree is one common to many of the world's religious traditions and has been used metaphorically to inspire the façade design."

    NYU Threatens Village Arborcide to Build its New Faux-rest [Curbed]
    NYU Center for Academic and Spiritual Life coverage [Curbed]

    http://curbed.com/archives/2010/02/0...son_street.php

  14. #74

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    ^^ Thompson Street with trees ^^





  15. #75

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    NYU's urban planning policies: consistently abominable.

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