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Thread: 122 Greenwich Avenue - One Jackson Square - by Kohn Pedersen Fox

  1. #16

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    Lovely back-side view with blank walls... as charming as an AT&T switch cable building.

  2. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fabrizio
    Lovely back-side view with blank walls... as charming as an AT&T switch cable building.
    Ciao, amico.

    I assume that you're referring to the tan stone building in the middle. It's owned by NYC, I don't think that it houses offices. Instead, I think that it's a ventillation shaft or houses power equipment or something like that.

  3. #18

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    London: see the photo above the one you are refering to.... with the blank walls looming over the low-rise block.

  4. #19

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    Now I see.

  5. #20

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    It seems to be designed that way with the presumption it might someday be joined by a neighbour.

  6. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by czsz
    It seems to be designed that way with the presumption it might someday be joined by a neighbour.
    I agree. I really hope that the deli is razed.

  7. #22

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    I think building a hulking 13 story blank wall is going to be a tough sell.

    The group of low buildings in front of the proposed blank wall look charming... exactly the kind of street scene that made the Village, the Village.

  8. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fabrizio
    The group of low buildings in front of the proposed blank wall look charming... exactly the kind of street scene that made the Village, the Village.
    The two-story corner building is not so hot.

  9. #24
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    Default Not the Village

    As a resident of the TRUE West Village I must speak that this is not. Directly across the park are several, much higher, and far more jarring buildings. Also, there is a nasty gas stations, in which cab drivers meet and are constantly not looking out for pedestrians. Every time I am in this area I see so much potential.

    Gorgeous building, which IMO is very contextual. It's elegent, contours to the street, and enhances what is now a blighted parking lot.

    As for the blank wall to the North Side- this is nothing new. Walk through midtown, downtown, hell- even the Village. New York City is blank wall crazy. It's just one of the many difficulties of urban design in Manhattan's ultra urban design. THe lot to the North is not owned by the developer, and at any time could be sold for new construction.

    Something tells me we won't see this developement stopped.

  10. #25
    Forum Veteran krulltime's Avatar
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    Commission ponders wavy design at 122 Greenwich Avenue





    07-MAR-06

    The Landmarks Preservation Commission held a hearing this morning on a plan by Hines Interests and Aby Rosen for a new, 36-unit, residential condominium building fronting on Jackson Square at the intersection of Eighth and Greenwich Avenues and 13th Street.

    The proposed building at 122 Greenwich Avenue is slightly larger than existing zoning allows, but its configuration closely conforms to the two zoning districts it falls within.

    The design by William Pedersen, shown above, of Kohn Pedersen Fox calls for a five-story street wall along Greenwich Avenue and a 128-foot-tower at the north end of the angled site with a windowless “party wall” on its north, mid-block façade.

    The design is distinguished by its horizontal bands of floor-to-ceiling glass windows that undulate differently on each floor and which also have different widths that appear to be randomly placed.

    Numerous community and civic groups including the Historic Districts Council have opposed the project, arguing that its elegant and modern design is “inappropriate” to the character of the Greenwich Village Historic District.

    But several speakers at the hearing spoke in favor of the design.

    Joseph Giovannini, the distinguished architecture critic, said that the design was “world-class” and that “sometimes you want the exception to the rule, as in the Seagram Building, which broke the street wall,” adding that “this breaks the street wall with transparency and lightness.” (Aby Rosen is one of the owners of the Seagram Building).

    Mr. Giovannini maintained that the project’s curves are in the striated tradition of the Starrett-Lehigh building not too far away in Chelsea, one of the city’s major modern landmarks, and he argued that the new project “belongs here, in the context of excellence – it takes up where the best and brightest left off…we want to see this innovation here first, not somewhere else.”

    A spokesman for the Greenwich Village Community Task Force, countered that the Seagram Building’s famous plaza and handsome glass and bronze façade set a precedent that transformed Park Avenue and that many people in Greenwich Village were concerned with the glassing-over of its historic, red-brick character.

    Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, said his organization is opposed to the design. “We felt very strongly that the design ought to build upon and relate to the character of the district and its surroundings, and in the almost-entirely flush glass, undulating façade of this design, we do not see that relationship”

    Another speaker, Cindy Keiter, who described herself as “a local tour guide,” spoke in opposition to the project, saying that tourists would say that it “stands out as a sore thumb” more appropriate to Houston and has nothing of the “specialty” of Greenwich Village.

    Sara Roberts, a neighborhood resident, spoke against the project stating that the location “is not Dubai, or Houston, or TriBeCa, or Niagara Falls,” a reference to architect Bill Pedersen’s display at the hearing of a photograph of a waterfall that he argued conveyed some of the project’s design dynamic.

    Martin Bowe, another nearby resident who said he was taking a “sick day” off to testify at the hearing, said the project was “strikingly beautiful” and noted that 14 Horatio Street, one of the nearby tall buildings, is also curved.

    Robert Tierney, the chairman of the commission, asked the developers to return at an unspecified future date to address comments presented at the hearing. When he asked if any of his commissioners cared to make a comment, one did, asserting that he found the design “appropriate.”


    Copyright © 1994-2006 CITY REALTY

  11. #26

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    This thread should be combined with this one:

    http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=8660

  12. #27
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    Exclamation Catch Up With Hines Development

    From The Real Estate:

    "On Tuesday, the Landmarks Preservation Commission declined to make a decision regarding 122 Greenwich Avenue, at Eighth Avenue and 13th Street in the Village. According to City Realty and other attendees, there was much back and forth, with some residents--and the New York Landmarks Conservancy and the NYC Chapter of the American Institute of Architects--favoring Hines' plan to develop the current parking lot into an 11-story, 36-unit glass-sheathed undulating residential tower, and several dozen opposed to it. The ground floor, at 8,000 square feet, is planned for retail.
    Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, told The Real Estate that his organization opposes the project because it doesn't fit in with the historic character of the neighborhood, and the location--where Greenwich Avenue, Eighth Avenue, 13th and Horatio streets converge--provides wide-open sightlines, and the building would be at "a very visible location," detracting from the Village's traditional architecture. "This isn't a side street," Mr. Berman said, where idiosyncratic buildings are merely quirky. Instead, the proposed development would set the tone for the entire neighborhood.

    Because the lot sits within the Greenwich Village Historic District, the L.P.C. must sign off on any development before the project breaks ground.

    The L.P.C. will hold a public meeting on the development in the near future.

    -Matthew Grace"

    While the Landmarks Preservation Committee still waits on their decision for 122 Greenwich St, lovers of important, contemporary art can voice their opinions on the matter by sending the commissioner a message in favor of this wavy glass- potential masterpiece- that could rise on the border of The West Village (on a blighted parking lot no less). I’ve voiced my approval, please do your part as well

    Here is the link: http://nyc.gov/html/mail/html/maillpc.html

    Here’s to keeping NYC alive!

  13. #28

    Default CONTEXT, CONTEXT, CONTEXT! (or I'm sick of brick)

    Hmm...I think the Greenwich Village Preservation Society should redirect some of its energy to more deserving projects. This is an empty parking lot after all.

    Why must new design be contextual? I realize this is Greenwich Village but must ALL new design conform to what has been done in the past? I doubt that 2 and 14 Horatio when built were contextual to its surroundings (small, four storey bldgs). If everything were contextual, this city would lose it's vitality. New York, it's neighborhoods, the archicture: it's all about change. That's what makes living here so energetic, be it good or bad. Some change is bad, I agree. But some, even uncomfortable ones especially in architecture, can nudge the historical context to create new meaning. Are we not in the 21st century?

    I live near this area. I don't think of the parking lot as anything special. Jackson Square Park across the street is mostly neglected, despite the renovations done in the 90s. ( I think this is mainly due to the gang of drunk bums that hang out here. Maybe the GVPS should direct some of their energy to cleaning up undesirables in the park.) And as others have posted, examine the west side of the park with the gas station which has outgrown it's site (it's way too small for the number of vehicles it serves, causing dangerous congestion of idling cars waiting on que with the heavy pedestrian traffic). This area is a strange mix of the old (if you consider the dominant 2 Horatio coop bldg from 1931 old), the industrial (the gas station), the new (the overhyped Meat Packing District one block west) and the undistinguished (the stretch of small residential and retail buildings along 8th Ave's west side btwn 13th & 14th St.). I believe the site of the proposed new building will actually improve this area. Hell, anything is better than Shoegasm.

    GVPS argues of historical context. Examine the Equinox gym one block south on the corner of W 12 St and Greenwich Ave. It's mix of glass and other materials blends well with nearby, older, brick dwellings. It's use of floor-to-ceiling glass actually brightens the streetscape in the evening. I think the glass facade will also do the same for 122 Greenwich Ave. One should also consider how you will view this structure and it's facade. For most, it will be approaching north on 8th Ave. In the evening, with residents in the new building, the apartments will create a glowing gateway to nearby Chelsea's vibrant streetlife (cafés, restaurants, bars, etc.). I find this totally appropriate. There is a reason after all that the much hated deli (the 2 storey structure on the photographs on the corner of 14th + 8 Ave) is called the "North Village" Deli. This isn't your historical part of the Village; it's the amalagam of the Village meeting Chelsea meeting the MPD. South of here, the Village is asleep and quiet (well, relatively speaking). But north and west, it's 24 hours.

    And as far as killing the Empire State views from it's much taller neighbors (17 storey 2 Horatio coops for example) - I doubt that. Most of what the Horatio coops will face will be the 7 storey facade along Greenwich Ave of the new, proposed bldg. The 11 storey section fronting the 8th Ave side as it bends on the lot plan, will be mostly a sliver (at least from what one can see on the photographs on previous link). The ESB is actually further east from the Horatio vantage point. So what views will be obstructed? If anything, I think it will enhance their view - especially in the evening. Example, the nearby Porter House: http://architourist.schtuff.com/porter_house_condo - just 2 blocks away on 15th St and 9th Ave. Imagine something similar.

    And please - don't even compare this to the Gwathmey Siegel monstrosity, Astor Place. At least the undulating glass on the 122 Greenwich Ave design works with the building and streetfront. It could further be argued that the use of the undulating facade (which is quite restrained compared to Siegel's exaggerated flow) is actually more in context when you consider the Hudson River being less than 3 blocks away. Also, 14 Horatio St just south of this proposed site, has a curved wall on it's corner. I believe they complement each other.

    It would be unfortunate if GVPS hinders a progressive design for 122 Greenwich Ave.

  14. #29

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    Interesting that you call the Gwathmey building a "monstrosity". Why? Weren't all of the arguments in favour of getting that one built, the same arguments you're using? Empty lot....will brighten the neighborhood...etc.? Remember too, the original renderings of the Gwathmey building showed transluscent glass.... and what did we get? Mirrors. Why do you feel we should believe these renderings?

    Just wondering.

  15. #30

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    kurokevin, thanks for the link. I sent in my comment:

    122 Greenwich Avenue should be built as designed. The issue of contextualism here is a red herring. The proposed building would be a gorgeous and revitalizing credit to its surroundings, which is more than you can say for the kind of fawning pap the preservationists might approve. Who needs the parking lot to hang around any longer?

    I urge everyone on this board to send in a comment supporting this revitalization of a spot that has lain fallow much too long. It will make a difference if everyone does his part.

    Fabrizio?

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