The modification of height and setback regulations is needed to facilitate the design of the proposed project, which seeks to develop modern Class A commercial office space in a central Manhattan location that is well served by existing transit services.
The modification of the design standards for pedestrian circulation space and retail continuity are necessary to enhance pedestrian circulation around the development site, particularly during peak periods as transit patrons enter and exit Penn Station and the Herald Square subway station. Specifically, the modification of the design standards for pedestrian circulation space is required to permit a sidewalk widening greater than 10 feet and to allow the proposed sidewalk widening on West 32nd and West 33rd Streets to not extend for the full frontage of the zoning lot as required. As shown on Figures 1-4 and 1-9, the proposed project would widen the Seventh Avenue sidewalk to 15 feet. The modification of the retail continuity requirements would permit the storefronts of the proposed project to be set back more than 10 feet from the Seventh Avenue street line to accommodate pedestrian flow.
The special permit pursuant to ZR section 81-45 is requested because the proposed project would not provide a minimum of 50 percent of the required pedestrian circulation space on a wide street. However since the proposed sidewalk widening of 15 feet already exceeds the maximum permitted width of 10 feet, there is no way to provide greater pedestrian circulation space without requiring a further waiver of ZR section 37-53(f).
The special permit pursuant to ZR section 81-47 is requested because the proposed project would widen the sidewalk by greater than 10 feet. As noted above, this widening is necessary to enhance pedestrian circulation.
The modification of street wall continuity requirements is needed to permit the building entrance to exceed 40 feet or 25 percent of the proposed building’s Seventh Avenue street frontage. As shown in Figures 1-4 and 1-9 the proposed building entrance on Seventh Avenue would be 57 feet wide. This modification would provide a lobby of sufficient size and arrangement to meet the circulation and security requirements of an office building with up to 10,000 employees.