View Poll Results: Hotel Pennsylvania should be replaced with the proposed office building

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  • Yes

    76 44.97%
  • No

    93 55.03%
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Thread: Hotel Pennsylvania - by McKim Mead & White - to be replaced by 15 Penn Plaza

  1. #61
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
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    The tan-colored base of the hotel is very classy and should be saved and incorporated into whatever boring glass tower they want to build there.

    I doubt the base of a new glass tower will ever be nearly as elegant as this one.

    Hearst and Foster showed us how well this can work out, why not here?


  2. #62
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    IMO the only thing nice about this building are the giant ionic columns. I keep getting it confused with the building directly south of it, which is much more elegant.

  3. #63
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    It's refreshing to hear a height go up, for once.

    I wouldn't mind a WTC rival - seems that 34th St. corridor has the potential to be a street of giants.

  4. #64

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    Quote Originally Posted by NYatKNIGHT View Post
    It's refreshing to hear a height go up, for once.

    I wouldn't mind a WTC rival - seems that 34th St. corridor has the potential to be a street of giants.

    I was thinking the same thing, but only on 33rd Street (extending to the MSG and Brookfield sites). It would almost be like a standoff between Downtown's tallest (the WTC) and Midtown's because there's not many tall buildings between the groups.

  5. #65

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    Daily News

    Office tower dooms Hotel Pennsylvania
    Hosted Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington


    BY PAUL D. COLFORD

    The Hotel Pennsylvania - a New York fixture whose phone number was immortalized in Glenn Miller's Big Band hit "Pennsylvania 6-5000" - will be torn down to build an office tower, according to a real estate report.

    Vornado Realty Trust, a real estate giant with big plans in the Madison Square Garden area, intends to replace the 1,700-room hotel opposite Penn Station with a 2.5-million-square-foot building by 2011, the report says.

    "The five base floors will be 100,000-square-foot trading floors, and the building will be marketed towards a financial services industry tenant," according to the 2007 market forecast from real estate firm Grubb & Ellis.


    A Vornado spokesman said last night the firm had no comment.

    The hotel, whose Seventh Ave. entrance is dominated by large columns, was developed by the Pennsylvania Railroad and designed by the renowned architectural firm McKim, Mead & White, which also gave New York its majestic main post office on Eighth Ave., as well as the former Penn Station.

    The Statler Hotel Pennsylvania, as general manager Ellsworth Statler's grande dame was originally known, opened in 1919 with 2,200 rooms. It was said to be the largest hotel in the world until the late 1920s.

    "New York Panorama," a guidebook produced in the 1930s by the Federal Writers' Project of New York City, described the 22-story Pennsylvania, the Commodore and the Roosevelt as "characteristic of the country-wide type of modern hotel."

    Its Cafe Rouge ballroom was a popular venue during the Big Band era of the 1930s and '40s. Besides Glenn Miller's orchestra, bandleaders Duke Ellington, Artie Shaw and the Dorsey brothers thrilled crowds from its stage. Benny Goodman's band was a favorite in the hotel's Manhattan Room.

    But with big Midtown office layouts now scarce, the tower envisioned for the site could fetch rents of around $100 per square foot - near the top for Manhattan - and "an accomplishment which would change the face of the Midtown South market," Grubb & Ellis predicted.

    Vornado, which announced plans to buy the Manhattan Mall in Herald Square last November, is also part of the development team picked by the state to turn the main post office into an extension of Penn Station.

    Though the Farley conversion is now stalled, Vornado and its partner, the Related Cos., are also pushing a much larger project. It would tack a new Madison Square Garden on the Ninth Ave. end of the post office complex and replace the existing arena with office towers and a new Penn Station.

    Until the hotel hits its undisclosed closing date, guests can still call Pennsylvania 6-5000 - the hotel's main phone number - and hear a few bars of its signature tune.

  6. #66
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    with the demolision and coordination of the underneath rail tracks and subways, they wont get this done by 2011, that I can gurantee. There selection of CM's thru the years ( plaza, HRH) also makes me know theywont finish by 2011

  7. #67

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    Is it Merrill Lynch who is scouting for new offices? When do its leases expire? Wasn't it around 2011? I wonder if Vornado has agreed to terms with them.


    Anyway, a site this large should accomodate an iconic tower. Anything less would be a real shame since: (1) sites this large are rare; and (2) the Hotel Penn is a very nice building whose drab interior could be remodeled.

    P.S.: I thought that between the Hotel Penn and the air rights from the Manhattan Mall (or whatever Vornado built) that this site had about 1.8 m s.f. of buildable space. Does anyone know where the other 700,000 comes from?

    P.P.S.: It would be nice if someone could assemble a site that includes all of the shabby little stores just north of the Hotel Penn between 33rd and 34th on 7th and the same holds true for all of the crap on the northeast corner of 34th and 8th. They are two blighted sites.
    Last edited by londonlawyer; January 5th, 2007 at 10:14 AM.

  8. #68
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
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    Wouldn't it be possible for Vornado to tear down the entire block and replace it with a giant building?

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by kliq6 View Post
    with the demolision and coordination of the underneath rail tracks and subways, they wont get this done by 2011, that I can gurantee. There selection of CM's thru the years ( plaza, HRH) also makes me know theywont finish by 2011
    Plaza or HRH for a COMMERCIAL building of this size? What are they thinking? Vornado had primarily used Bovis and Pavarini for core and shell construction.

    On another vein... Before we het too excited about this remember what happened to the 32-story tower to be built by Vornado at the SE corner of 34th & 7th Ave. It stands and a 2-story retail taxpayer. Vornado is a big player, but also one of the most conservative and pragmtic real estate developers in the city. Look how long it took to get the Alexander's site developed into Bloomberg Tower. They don't build spec buildings, so I'm betting nothing moves until a tenant is secured.

  10. #70

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    NY Guy posted this rendering on another site:



    Does anyone know if this is it? (I hope not.) It would be lame to lose the Hotel Penn in return for a 750 foot box.

  11. #71
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    That base sucks and I don't like the midblock tower. It will line up almost directly with 135 West 31st (Friar Tower). I'd prefer a design that reversed it more in the NY Times mode.

    Also, Vornado is turning the area into a billboard jungle (and not even very interesting billboards at that.) Another step toward the Tokyoization of NY. One big Times Square. No dilineation anymore between neighborhoods and districts.

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrooklynRider View Post
    Plaza or HRH for a COMMERCIAL building of this size? What are they thinking? Vornado had primarily used Bovis and Pavarini for core and shell construction.

    On another vein... Before we het too excited about this remember what happened to the 32-story tower to be built by Vornado at the SE corner of 34th & 7th Ave. It stands and a 2-story retail taxpayer. Vornado is a big player, but also one of the most conservative and pragmtic real estate developers in the city. Look how long it took to get the Alexander's site developed into Bloomberg Tower. They don't build spec buildings, so I'm betting nothing moves until a tenant is secured.
    Right on the money brooklyn with there conservative ways. They have used Bovis yes for bloomberg and I can only hope they go that way for this one!!

  13. #73
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    To clear a few things up:

    That rendering londonlawyer posted is also available on the first page of this thread. It was a plan for a residential building, and designed a couple years ago. It also seems to not be located on the actual Hotel Penn site, and is instead a block north on the southeast corner of 7th & 34th.

    As per the air rights: the article in this post mentions that 250,000 square feet were added to the Hotel Penn site when Vornado purchased the Manhattan Mall a short while back. I assume any additional air rights that comprise the full 2.5 million square feet come from a variety of properties nearby, almost all of which Vornado seems to have bought by now.

    Finally: Merrill Lynch's lease at the WFC is up by 2011. There are a bunch of articles in the World Trade Center threads (Freedom Tower, etc.) that discuss the possibility of them singlehandedly filling up one of the new towers (Tower 3 seems most likely). As for the Vornado office tower, the article I posted a link to speculates that the NBA would be the anchor tenant there. Not sure how credible that sounds now that 5 trading floors have been added to the plan.

  14. #74

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    Quote Originally Posted by pianoman11686 View Post
    To clear a few things up....

    That rendering londonlawyer posted is also available on the first page of this thread. It was a plan for a residential building, and designed a couple years ago. It also seems to not be located on the actual Hotel Penn site, and is instead a block north on the southeast corner of 7th & 34th....


    Finally: Merrill Lynch's lease at the WFC is up by 2011. There are a bunch of articles in the World Trade Center threads (Freedom Tower, etc.) that discuss the possibility of them singlehandedly filling up one of the new towers (Tower 3 seems most likely). As for the Vornado office tower, the article I posted a link to speculates that the NBA would be the anchor tenant there. Not sure how credible that sounds now that 5 trading floors have been added to the plan.
    But the model next to the rendering (which seems to be the same building) is on the Hotel Penn site.

    PS: While the NBA might take 200,000 s.f. or so (I can't imagine that they even need that much), this building must have a large tenant lined up or else I doubt that Vornado would proceed. Also, Vornado must be eyeing a bank or else they would not be building huge trading floors.

    Although there was talk about Merrill staying downtown, this site was also mentioned, and I have a strong feeling that Vornado is coming to terms with them (evidenced by the 2011 date, among other things).

  15. #75
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    Vengineer, you tease. Spill it!

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