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Thread: Farewell, Gasoline Alley; the changing face of Noho

  1. #16
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    An artist's impression of the same corner ...



    Copyright © 1973-2006 John Baeder


  2. #17
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    CURBED reports on more changes in NoHo ...

    Destructoporn: 30 Great Jones Demo'd to Death

    Thursday, May 29, 2008, by Pete



    Any reports that the old 8-story building at 30 Great Jones Street in
    NoHo was simply undergoing a partial demo and that the 2 bottom floors
    would remain intact have now been proven completely false. All that's
    left of the former screw factory is a subterranean pile of bricks and
    granite blocks. The final demo took place before the Landmarks
    Commission OK'd the newly-enlarged NoHo Historic District earlier this
    month. No new building applications have been filed, so any new
    construction on this site will still have to pass lots of historical muster.
    What's interesting is that a look at recent filings at the Department of
    Finance show that the owner of 30 GJ has teamed up with the owners of
    the big mid-block parking lot just to the east to create a single lot that's
    about 110' by 100'. That's nearly the size of the parcel where the
    super-glam but not-always-popular 40 Bond went up just one block south.
    So, what will go up on this choice piece of property? Perhaps another new condo?
    Or maybe those nasty NYU rumors are really true after all.


    Map from DOF filings, showing the neighboring lots, now combined.


    30 Great Jones, then (L.) and now (R.).


    The mid-block lots in question along the north side of Great Jones Street.


    The now-demo'd lower floors of 30 GJ.


    When the old screw factory building first started coming down.

    · Destructoporn: 30 Great Jones Going [Curbed]
    · Extended Noho Historic District Gets Green Light [Curbed]
    · Noho Residents Freaking Out at Mere Prospect of More Condos [Curbed]

    30gj

  3. #18

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    Looking down Lafayette. The first two are not technically in NoHo but its a look back at pre-war Manhattan.





    Here, instead of 40 Wall, we see Chase.

  4. #19
    In the long run... londonlawyer's Avatar
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    Lafayette has so many beautiful buildings, but that parking garage is not one of them. I hope that it's razed during the next boom.

  5. #20
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    That first two pics show one of the great street-level vistas in all of NYC [west side of Lafayette, just below Houston ]

  6. #21
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    Curbed.com:

    Gas Station Mania: Soho's Big BP Next To Go Dry?

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009, by Pete




    The sites in question on Houston between Lafayette and Crosby.


    The word on the streets of Soho is that cabbies soon may have to drive a bit further to fill their gas tanks. The talk? The demise of the big BP gas station, long planted on the southwest corner of Lafayette and East Houston (with the festive Puck Fair drinkery a bit farther down the block). Indications are that the BP lot will join up with the two smaller and previously-linked lots to the south, creating one mega-plot in a very desirable spot. But the changes may not come easy.

    Down this way, certain types of development proposals are seen as fighting words. These lots would be covered by the newly-proposed extension of the Soho Historic District. Plus, the site is controlled by NYC's arcane M1-5B Manufacturing District zoning regulations, which could make certain projects problematic, but that hasn't stopped others with big plans and deep pockets from jumping into the fray. This very visible and heavily trafficked site sits right above the MTA's soon-to-be-fantastic Broadway Lafayette / Bleecker Street Station and is just a short hurl from the madness of the Broadway Mall. Whatever rises here would have fantastic views of the grand old Puck Building across Lafayette, not to mention the glassy penthouse of that wacky-faced thing from SHoP at 290 Mulberry. They say location is everything. We'll have to wait and see what that might bring.
    · 298 Lafayette Development Rights [NYC Department of Finance website]
    · All Houston Street Coverage [Curbed]

  7. #22
    In the long run... londonlawyer's Avatar
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    More good news (in my opinion, at least)

    http://evgrieve.com/2009/08/new-skyl...te-street.html

  8. #23
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    Default 25 Great Jones Street

    Hotel Gets a Dramatic Facade Facelift
    January 12, 2010, by Pete








    (click to enlarge)

    We've been stupefied by the concrete and cinderblock tower under construction at 25 Great Jones Street for the better part of a year, even after its black-and-white partial reveal. Now the game plan has changed again. The 13-story sliver hotel (with big plans from celebrity chef Todd English inside) got out of the ground before the Noho Historic District was enlarged to cover the block, but the building now falls under the rule of the Landmarks Preservation Commission. So the hotel's owners have brought on a new creative team to woo the LPC with some sexy skin. Henry Smith-Miller of Smith-Miller + Hawkinson Architects (imaginator of Tribeca's Stone Cloud) has come on board to make the nearly complete main structure shine. Plans were unveiled at a community board meeting last night, and there were some surprises, especially over on the Bond Street side.

    Smith-Miller's facade inspiration comes from around the corner on Bleecker Street: Louis Sullivan's 1897 Bayard Condict Building, one of NYC's earliest skyscrapers and graced with one of the prettiest faces in town. The intaglio terracotta is echoed in the hotel's stainless steel scrim etched with botanical shapes that will cover both the north and south facades above Great Jones and Bond Streets. Punched with holes, the scrim will allow light to penetrate while keeping the hotel rooms private (no Standard shenanigans here). The east and west facades along the lot lines that for now look so grim would get a stucco treatment with windows punched randomly. Don't forget there's another new building planned right next door along Lafayette.

    The hotel's property goes through to Bond Street, where 22 Bond came down years ago. The proposal is for a picket fence bolted to the steel frame and rising 30' into the air. The fence, painted in the same pixilated patterns as the scrim above, takes its cue from the even crazier graffiti gates a few doors over at 40 Bond, and will enclose a glass-cube inner lobby—all the better to keep noisy party-goers under control (not to mention the golden dancers next door). Deciduous trees will rise within and be visible from the sidewalk outside the fence. This block is already full of fun and foliage, so we'll see how the LPC reacts. The design team has a date with the commission next week.

    25 Great Jones Street coverage [Curbed]
    Smith-Miller + Hawkinson Architects [smharch.com]

    http://curbed.com/archives/2010/01/1...elift.php#more

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    10 to 1 it comes out looking like a Gene Kaufman / McSam crapper.

  10. #25
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    Actually that ^ is what everyone is trying to avoid, from the new hotel gang to the architect to CBw to Landmarks. The big problem is the structure as erected (first filed as a vertical enlargement of existing 2-story structure back in the late '90s) is classic Kaufman garbage. Now the hope is to wrap it in something that will mitigate the ungainliness.

  11. #26
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    Preservationists Think 25 Great Jones is Giving Noho the Finger

    January 18, 2010, by Sara

    The proposed facade facelift for the hotel rising at 25 Great Jones Street goes before the Landmarks Preservation Commission tomorrow. The plan's early reviews from Community Board 2 were positive, but this preview we received of the Historic Districts Council's LPC testimony should do absolutely nothing to sooth the architect's pre-LPC jitters:
    HDC finds 25 Great Jones Street to not only be inappropriate for the NoHo Historic District, but also an example of what not to do in any historic district or neighborhood for that matter. The selfish design pays no notice or consideration to its neighbors. The building breaks the street wall on both sides with huge setbacks, and then adds insult to injury with a jagged, brutalist fence and bamboo, neither of which have any relation to the district. The set back exposes the party walls of the neighboring buildings, and in turn the new structure’s height exposes plain side elevations. The result is a structure that sticks out like a sore thumb, or another finger, on the block.
    But perhaps there's a way to make the best of a bad situation:
    We understand that the building has pretty much already been constructed and that we are reviewing only its skin. Although no where near the ideal solution, HDC suggests that the skin be brought out to the street wall to the height of the adjacent buildings in order to basically hide what has been built behind. Then 25 Great Jones can just serve as a reminder of what not to do in an historic district and of the importance of landmarking at the appropriate time.
    HDC LPC Testimony Archives [HDC]
    25 Great Jones Street coverage [Curbed]

    http://curbed.com/archives/2010/01/1...inger.php#more

  12. #27
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    Default ...the changing face of NoHo...

    ...but some things don't change...

    Those windows and the view along Broadway are marvelous.


    The Domestication of a Dive

    By CONSTANCE ROSENBLUM











    Erie Basin, Brooklyn

    THE 1970s and ’80s are on thrilling and sometimes terrifying display in the fifth-floor apartment in NoHo where Joel Hinman has lived for the past 35 years.

    One of the two graceful Beaux-Arts windows in the living room — eight-foot-wide half moons that gaze like giant eyes onto the intersection of Bleecker Street and Broadway — is pocked with a semicircle of bullet holes.

    Mr. Hinman suspects that they date from the years when the law commune that served the Black Panthers had its headquarters on this floor.

    The dramas unspooled into the ’90s. Long after his arrival as a raw 20-something from Connecticut, Mr. Hinman used to gaze longingly at the orgies taking place in an apartment across the street.

    “The shades are up, and there’s hard-core porn on the TV, and you’re feeling like you’re never invited to the right parties,” Mr. Hinman, 57, a writer who spent many years making concert films and other documentaries, recalled the other day as he stood by that window and talked wistfully about the neighborhood’s past. “And I’m wondering: How can I ever get over there? Do I do the old ‘Hi, I’m bringing the pizza’ joke?”.

    Outside his apartment door, the creaky elevator and rickety winding stairwell bring to mind another defining aspect of those years, the nearly three decades that Martin Fine was the landlord. In 1995, Mr. Fine landed on the annual list of the city’s 10 worst landlords compiled by the newspaper columnist Jack Newfield; one of Mr. Hinman’s prized possessions is a T-shirt showing the list splashed across the front page of The New York Post.

    The apartment, at 640 Broadway, is nowadays the setting for a far tidier existence. Mr. Hinman, who teaches fiction and poetry at the Writers Studio and works as a volunteer at the Institute for Mediation and Conflict Resolution in the South Bronx, now lives here with Kari Thorstensen, 42, his wife of five years, and the couple’s year-old son, Cyrus John Henry.

    But the 2,500-square-foot apartment, for which they pay $1,291 a month, is still very much a bachelor pad, bearing witness to a wild ride of a life, or at least to other people’s wild rides.

    Telling the story of Mr. Hinman and the apartment means going far back in time. Maybe not back to 1650, when the first Hinman arrived in Connecticut from England. (That chapter is recalled by needlepoint cushions, made by Mr. Hinman’s mother, that bear the family crest and the British royal lion.) But certainly back to the years when the Hinman family owned the Erie Basin, the venerable shipyard in Brooklyn.

    The family sold the property in 1953, the year Mr. Hinman was born, but a huge photograph of the complex hangs in the hallway that snakes through the apartment.

    By 1975, when Mr. Hinman and a college friend arrived at 640 Broadway, a nine-story brown brick structure built in 1897, both the building and the surrounding neighborhood were on the ropes. First heroin, then crack cocaine, battered the streets. Inside, small factories were interspersed with a few hardy residential tenants.

    “A guy named Sally, a guy with a big pompadour, ran the elevator,” Mr. Hinman said. “My college buddy and I were both 21. We were completely clueless about what we were getting into.”

    The premises left much to be desired, but at $500, the rent seemed awfully cheap. “We thought we were sharp operators,” he said. “In our dreams.”

    For most of the past 35 years, until 2008, Mr. Hinman lived at 640 Broadway without a lease. The setup wasn’t legal, and there was never a dull moment.

    In the apartment at the rear of the floor, which back then was reached only through Mr. Hinman’s space, the residents lived especially large. He remembers their experiments with angel dust, the screenings of human dismemberment films from Peru and the time a bunch of guys showed up dressed up as Arab women. As the party raged on, the building sank ever deeper into decay.

    In Mr. Hinman’s apartment, the kitchen sink fell through the counter and mushrooms sprouted under the bed. Over a two-week period, he killed nine rats; he marked the death of one of the perps by making a chalk drawing of its carcass, “just like they do in crime scenes,” he said.

    Over the years, as Mr. Hinman worked away in a back room, friends crashed and roommates drifted in and out, leaving behind an ever-expanding collection of junk. Broken television sets. A trouser press. (“God knows why,” Mr. Hinman said.) Someone’s wedding dress. He thinks the owner’s name was Bonnie.

    Yet despite the chaos, there were many reasons to stay.

    “I had this fabulous huge place with cheap rent and great architecture,” he said. “I could have lots of roommates to reduce the cost. And since it was a loft, I could run my business out of the back and live in the front.” Plus he was young — that accounted for a lot.

    Today most of the stranger items are gone, and concessions have been made to the apartment’s newer occupants. For Cyrus, there’s a pastel nursery with a domed ceiling. For Ms. Thorstensen, a technology product management consultant, there’s a tasteful gray office.

    The kitchen looks almost high-tech. Magnetized spice jars cling to a wall like shiny barnacles. Gray-green tiles echo the colors of a favorite painting by an American artist named Randy Dudley that hangs on one wall. The cabinet doors have no handles, which gives them a sleek, minimalist look.

    In the living room, metal lanterns from Anthropologie, an unexpected touch of high-fashion décor, dangle on either side of the great windows, which are framed by palm trees and edged with pots of geraniums, rosemary, aloe and papyrus plants.

    Yet even now, with a wife and baby in residence, remnants of the old days endure, among them an ancient butler’s table and a beat-up leather sofa, so huge that when Mr. Hinman wanted it recovered, the upholsterers had to make a house call. Jagged strips of decorative copper trim, the edges sharp as fangs, snake around one wall.

    “The place was in such bad shape that the guy who came to child-proof the apartment before Cyrus was born came a month early,” Mr. Hinman said. “And after he looked at it, he said it was the second-worst place he had ever seen.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/14/re...te/14habi.html

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    Height Issues

    New York's landmarks commission contends with uncontextual Noho tower


    For a new hotel within the Noho historic district, the building's bulk is pushed back from its Bond Street frontage.

    The Great Jones Hotel is a 13-story sliver building that snuck into the ground before the section of Noho surrounding it was made a historic district in the fall of 2008. The building thus did not have to undergo review by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, that is, until the developer cut so many corners in its rush to build that the LPC now gets another crack at it.
    Many in the community were hoping the city would require the developer, SDS Brooklyn, to tear down its topped-out hotel and start anew. Instead, the L-shaped building on a through-lot with entries on both Great Jones and Bond streets can stand, and the commission is left with only the facade to debate.


    A proposed fence on Bond Street would help maintain the street wall.

    The developer was originally working with Dumbo-based TKA Studio on a wavy metallic design, but fearing that was too radical, brought in Smith-Miller + Hawkinson for the redo. The firm has had a number of envelope-pushing successes at the commission in recent years, including two for SDS. “We’re the hit-men for historic districts now,” Henry Smith-Miller said in an interview.

    His proposal was to drop the metal sides in favor of stucco, and cover expansive windows with a stainless steel scrim with a pixilated leaf pattern. Smith-Miller said the leaves are a nod to Louis Sullivan’s Bayard-Condict Building on nearby Bleecker Street, while the materials and modern verve more closely resemble contemporary landmarks just down the block, including Herzog & de Meuron’s 40 Bond and Deborah Berke’s 48 Bond.

    Community Board 2 broadly supported the plan in early January, requesting simply that the leaves be dropped for a more neoclassical approach. The board even supported a controversial 30-foot fence with a wavy pattern on the project’s Bond Street frontage that is intended to maintain the street wall while masking the taller building set behind it.

    Despite the board’s approval, dozens of angry preservationists and neighbors turned out to the commission’s January 19 meeting on the building. “Honestly, well-designed refrigerators have more aesthetic appeal,” said Simeon Bankoff, executive director of the Historic Districts Council. Others realized the futility of complaining. “I agree that this is a problematic situation,” said Peter Davies, a neighbor. “I think with some input and revisions from Smith-Miller + Hawkinson, who I believe have been given an almost impossible task here, that something good can come of this.”


    Seen from Great Jones Street, the tower rises significantly above its neighbors.

    The commissioners were more enthusiastic, expressing general support for the project, though they withheld a vote on it for a later date. “I think you’ve presented a very inventive solution to the problem,” Commissioner Diana Chapin said. Others suggested the community was more upset with the presence of the hotel than with the design itself, something neither neighbors nor the commission could do anything about.

    “The building works in the context as best I could do,” Smith-Miller told AN. “It’s a tall building, a modernist zoning envelope basically, and there’s really only so much you can do with it.”

    Matt Chaban

    http://www.archpaper.com/e-board_rev.asp?News_ID=4241

  14. #29
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    Curbed.com



    Contrary to popular opinion, Ian Schrager and Adam Gordon haven't turned every inch of Bond Street into gold-plated trophy homes for bankers and Ricky Martin. How can we fix that? Well here's a solid opportunity for the barons of Bond: 8-12 Bond Street, currently a parking lot and a three-floor building home to a gallery/event space and a residential unit on the top floor, have just hit the market either as a package deal or sold separately. On their own, the parking lot is asking $6 million and 8 Bond—which can be delivered vacant—is seeking $6.75 million. The properties fall within the Noho Historic District but according to the listing, "The owner has obtained all necessary certificates for the demolition of all of the buildings on the subject property." So what can be built?

    Enough room to shake your bon-bon in, that's for sure. >>

  15. #30
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    High Hopes

    LPC approves improvements to Noho sliver building

    by Matt Chaban


    A new facade designed by Smith-Miller + Hawkinson Architects for a 13-story hotel at 25 Great Jones Street was approved today.

    The block of Bond Street between Lafeyette and the Bowery has become, in less than a decade’s time, one of the most high profile in the city. Not only is there 40 Bond, Herzog & de Meuron’s celebrated take on the cast-iron architecture of the city, but also 48 Bond, a black affair by Deborah Burke, 25 Bond, BKSK’s pixilated sandstone, and 41-43 Bond, bronze-shuttered minimalism from Stephen Harris. Now, add to that 25 Great Jones Street, a 13-story L-shaped hotel that also stretches through to Bond Street.


    A full-scale mock-up of the leaf-eteched mesh screen, which will adorn the facade, was presented to the commission today.


    THe L-shaped building's bond street side will include a restaurant, hidden behind a 30-foot-tall wavy fence. (Click to zoom)

    Construction on the hotel began just before the area surrounding it became part of the Noho Historic District, but permit problems triggered a belated review earlier this year by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, despite the building being nearly complete. While many commissioners acknowledged they never would have approved such a tall, acontextual building, they were limited to critiquing the façade, which won unanimous approval today. The vote means construction, which had been on hold since November, can soon resume.

    “I can’t quite say we’re making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, but we are giving an eye to art and architecture in an area long known for it, and hopefully that will take the eye away from what’s problematic about this building,” Commissioner Elizabeth Ryan said during a commission meeting held this afternoon.
    The project was initially designed by DUMBO-based TKA Studio, but the developer, Second Development Services, decided to bring in Smith-Miller + Hawkinson Architects to rework the façade, in light of a string of success the firm has had at the commission, including one for SDS. Rippling metallic sides and sheer curtain walls were replaced, respectively, with dark grey stucco and a mesh screen etched with a floral pattern—actually an abstract copy of artist and architect an Alan Buchsbaum photograph Serious Leaves. Some commissioners particularly liked that the work of one of modern Soho’s foremost designers would live on in this project.

    The building drew a great deal of outcry from the community, including some 90 minutes of testimony in opposition at a February commission hearing, but architect Henry Smith-Miller maintains that was less opposition to his work than the presence of a 48-room hotel on two relatively quiet residential streets. Taking this into consideration, Community Board 2 recommended the commission support the revisions, calling them superior to the initial proposal, troubling as it remains.

    The commissioners agreed that while the new façade could not erase the building’s egregious proportions, it would help to mask them. “I just think this is such an excellent project making so much out of so little that was provided to you,” Commissioner Margery Perlmutter told Smith-Miller. Her colleague, Roberta Brandeis Gratz, praised with a faint damning. “This is a very inventive solution to an unfortunate and challenging problem, but as a solution, it will go a long way to overcoming the this out-of-scale building.”


    The original, metalic design, by TKA Studio, was never presented to the commission, as it was considered too modern.

    Commissioners still took issue with a few minor details, such as the decision to have two planters flanking the Great Jones Street entrance filled with bamboo, a 30-foot tall undulating wooden fence on the Bond Street side, and the decision not to treat the sides of the building with anything more than a smattering of punched windows. Still, these complaints were outweighed by the improvements Smith-Miller Hawkinson made and did not stand in the way of the project’s approval.

    Despite the initial setback created by having to take the project through the commission, Barbara Resnicow, SDS’s director of project management, said the process led to a better building. “It’s a great solution for the community and the commission,” she said. “It was a learning process for us, but ultimately the project has been improved.

    http://www.archpaper.com/e-board_rev.asp?News_ID=4339

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