The 10-story Hudson Blue will rise on this 23.5-foot-wide site. 9 April 2005.
Luxe Designers Reflect
West Street project mirrors Meier's affection for glass facades
By Melissa Dehncke-McGill
Glass facades are mirroring global design trends in Manhattan, replacing cement and brick frames with conventional windows, providing apartments with more light and perhaps inadvertently giving an immediate answer to passers-by who might wonder, "Whatís it like to live there?"
Following on the heels of the Richard Meier-designed Perry Street towers and The Related Companiesí Astor Place project, the newest reflective high-end condo development will be at 423 West Street, on the new Gold Coast of the West Village. The 23.5-foot-wide, 10-story tower, which is on its way to completion, sits between Perry and West 11th streets and has been dubbed Hudson Blue by developer Horizen Global.
Occupants of the project will look out of floor-to-ceiling windows at commanding views of the Hudson River from the second to the top floor. Since itís just across from the Hudson River Park, thereís little chance those river views will be disturbed, according to the developer.
Dan Cobleigh, Horizen vice president of design and construction, said the building, on the former site of the Pit Stop, a local repair garage, will bring in a more updated aesthetic, in line with the nearby Meier towers, which have grabbed headlines for both design and prices.
The intent was to capture the greatest sweep of views available, and the heating and cooling system was installed for unobstructed sightlines. "Most sliver lots have one exposure, but because our property is 15 feet forward, we also have 15 feet of southern exposure," said Cobleigh.
Horizen chief executive Michael Yanko said the materials used will allow for larger vistas and help maintain privacy. "Different glass has been used to compensate for the sun and shade hitting the building, allowing a wider radius view from the inside, ensuring that nobody can see in," he said.
Yanko said Hudson Blueís offering plan will be available by the beginning of February. The buildingís sales and marketing agent, Corcoranís Shlomi Rouveni, said there has already been plenty of buyer interest.
"We donít even have a sign on the building and weíve been getting a lot of phone calls," he said.
The relatively small project will include a half-dozen two-bedroom apartments as well as a pair of duplex apartments with three bedrooms each. Buyers will have their choice as to whether they want high-end finishes or raw space.
"As opposed to bigger buildings like Morton Square, this will be an exceptionally exclusive eight-unit condo, which will probably end up being four to five units total, since some people will buy more than one apartment for duplexes," said Yanko. "We are giving amenities such as a private chef in the cellar with a common kitchen making food for the weekend, and Iím actually subsidizing the chef for the first year as part of the attraction. You could not do this in a 200-unit building."
While the design has some trendy cachet, it doesnít have the status-symbol clout of brand-name architecture. But Cobliegh said heís not worried, and that he believes that people buy brand-name architects to impress their friends.
"Although we donít have a world famous architect on our payroll, the buyers in our building are impressed with their own status, and believe Ďmy own eyes can tell me itís good.í"
Cobleigh acknowledged that there is a strong movement among the current population in the area to curb the new development that is bringing in a different aesthetic, at least for a while.
"The residents need time to digest it before they accept that this is the new direction," he said. "People want to be heard, and so much has been forced on them so quickly that they need time to recover."
However, curtain walls are here to stay, the architecturally trained Cobleigh said.
"In Europe itís been around for 20 years," he said. "We are businessmen not altruists, but we believe in contributing to the advancement of design."
The Real Deal
The 10-story Hudson Blue will rise on this 23.5-foot-wide site. 9 April 2005.
It looks like the building to the north of Hudson Blue actually has windows that will be blocked by the new construction. That's got to be depressing for those residents...
New glass facade on West Street 14-JUL-05
Construction is underway at Hudson Blue, a 10-story, new condominium apartment building at 423 West Street.
Designed by Patrick Han, the very attractive building is notable for the thin diagonal pier on its mostly glass faÁade. The building, which is 23.5 feet wide and between Perry and West 11th Streets, has a setback at the ninth floor.
It is being developed by Horizen Global, which is headed by Michael Yanko, on the former site of the Pit Stop Auto Repair shop.
It will have 8 apartments and is a few doors north of several other new modern glass condo towers on West Street. It will have a part-time attending lobby with limestone floors and a fireplace and all apartments will have fireplaces and balconies or terraces. The building has private storage areas and a wine cellar.
Prices for 1,245-sq. ft.-units with 1.5 baths start at about $1,990,000.
Anybody in NYC with lot-line windows should be savvy enough to know that the windows are not forever.
Some lot-line windows are grey-area-illegal, put up when an adjacent building is torn down. That happened with the building now on the north side of River Lofts. There was a building there before the parking lot, and when it was demolished, windows were punched into the exposed wall.
At Hudson Blue, the building to the left was built about 10 years ago. There was a low building next to it that had been there for a long time. Since the developer designed the building with the windows, someone could assume that he had acquired the air-rights, or that they didn't exist.
A few blocks to the north at W12th, the developer did the right thing. The wall facing the parking lot at Jane St is blank.
I'm not saying that a builder shouldn't include lot-line windows (take advantage of the light / air / views while you have it). But it certainly puts a twist on "buyer beware".
I'm confused. Your last two posts seem to contradict each other.
As it turns out, that parking lot is to be developed. Plans have already been submitted.
I'm sure sales mentioned that when they showed the apartments to buyers.
Sorry - don't mean to be confusing (although I admit I may be confused myself ).
At the risk of confusing you even further ...
In the case of the building next to the River Lofts, the windows that were punched through on the upper floor lot-lines were possibly done back in the good old days when Tribeca / SoHo were still the wild wild west and conversions from manufacturing to residential were taking place despite illegalities (if pioneering loft dwellers hadn't broken the rules then neither SoHo or Tribeca as they exist today never would have come to pass).
In the case of Hudson Blue: the buildings on both the north and south of that site have (had?) lot-line windows facing onto the Hudson Blue site. The windows on the building to the south are far smaller than those on the newer and taller building to the north. It seems an odd architectural / design choice to install such large lot-line windows as exist on the taller building to the north, given the existence of the buildable site next door.
In either case it would seem that none of the lot-line windows that abut Hudson Blue would be necessary for code-compliance regarding the regulations for light / air that are necessary for residential occupancy (my guess is that the windows in question are in bathrooms/ kitchens, which have different requirements). Therefore the loss of those windows is more of an inconvenience than anything else.
A similar situation occurred in SoHo when the new apartment buildings went up along Houston St. between Mercer / Wooster. Lot-line windows had been punched into the north facades on the upper floors of the older buildings which faced onto the parking lots that had been on those sites for many years. The occupants of the buildings where the windows were punched through most likely did not consider those lot-line windows to be in jeopardy, given the zoning restrictions in place in SoHo. But time changes everything -- and a "Special Permit" allowed buildings to be constructed that forced the closure of those lot-line windows.
What is that filler material between HB and the red brick building next to it?
If you look past the tree, you can make out steel bands that are bolted into the wall.
One of my old stomping grounds...
What a handsome block this has turned out to be! And almost entirely composed of modern buildings ... !