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  #1  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 5:26 PM
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Smile NEW YORK | 31 W. 57th St | FT | FLOORS

I will hate to see these buildings go, but the 57th Street wave is just too hot...


http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/15/ny...gain.html?_r=0

Bookstore May Have to Flee the Wrecking Ball, Again





By CHARLES V BAGLI
JAN. 14, 2014


Quote:

The owners of the building at 31 West 57th Street near Fifth Avenue that houses Rizzoli — the LeFrak real estate family and Vornado Realty Trust — recently gave the bookstore the bad news: They plan to demolish the six-story, 109-year-old building, as well as two small, adjoining buildings.

The owners declined to describe their plans on 57th Street, where a string of extremely tall and slender ultraluxury towers are under construction.


“I can’t comment on those buildings,” Harrison T. LeFrak said. “If you have any questions, speak to my partner.”

A spokesman for Vornado did not return calls requesting comment.

But one executive who has been briefed on the plans said the owners hoped to find Rizzoli a new home. The executive said the developers had not decided whether to build a commercial or residential tower.

“It’s sad if we also lose those three limestone mansions, which were converted to commercial uses decades ago,” said Peg Breen, president of the New York Landmarks Conservancy. “There will be very little left on 57th Street that shows how it used to be.

“I think bookstores in New York City need to be protected at all costs,” she added.

Fifty-seventh Street, which had fallen on hard times, became home to a collection of theme restaurants like Planet Hollywood during the 1990s. Today, the developer Gary Barnett is nearing completion of a 1,004-foot apartment tower near Seventh Avenue, where the penthouse is under contract for $90 million. The developer Harry B. Macklowe is building an even taller tower near 57th Street and Fifth Avenue, where the penthouse went for $95 million. The developer Steve Witkoff bought the nearby Park Lane Hotel, where he, too, plans to build an ultraluxury tower.
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  #2  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 5:40 PM
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Google Earth view...













Location in relation to other development or potential development sites...


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  #3  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 5:52 PM
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My guess is another skinny supertall residential, and with a location just off Fifth, could have the highest prices of any of the 57th Street towers.
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  #4  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 5:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
My guess is another skinny supertall residential, and with a location just off Fifth, could have the highest prices of any of the 57th street towers.
Yeah, I'm thinking that also. There's no way they're getting an office building of any value built on that site, and the highest value of a residential tower there is in views of the park. I don't know how tall they will go, it doesn't really need to be a supertall. But stay tuned.
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Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 7:02 PM
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Ow. That's gonna hurt when those are knocked down. If only they transferred the airrights to 50w58th. That's a crummy building that would be ok being demoed.


https://www.honestbuildings.com/buil.../50-w-58th-st/

Actually, now that I look into it, 50w58th was sold in 2012 to BOB 57 LLC, with plans to demo in 2015. So that may just happen.

Quote:
The buyer, BOB 57 LLC, owns two buildings adjacent to Hadassah House, according to records and a person familiar with the deal. Hadassah can stay in its headquarters for three years; eventually, the property will be razed, and the lots could be a combination of retail, office, hotel or condominiums, according to people familiar with the deal.
http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...66730240179896

I think this is one of the assemblages that RW and Crawford have been hinting at.

Last edited by scalziand; Jan 15, 2014 at 7:54 PM.
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  #6  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 7:17 PM
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Yep. These buildings back up to the Hadassah building, which was just sold.

So you can see this is a bigger assemblage than just the three 57th Street buildings. Vornado has very substantial air rights here.
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Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 7:53 PM
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The townhouse on the left can go. It's plain hideous but the other ones are beautiful and should stay. This will be painful to watch.
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  #8  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 7:57 PM
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Will be interesting to follow this development. They have Park Lane to contend with, too.
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Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 8:45 PM
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this is a good yet bad thing,sure we may see something good arise from this but these buildings are really a loss :/
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Old Posted Jan 15, 2014, 10:00 PM
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This is a tragedy we lost enough of these buildings with 432 Park Ave... can no one do as the Hearst did and incorporate these towers in with the design?
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  #11  
Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 12:45 AM
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^ikr? its disheartening
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Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 12:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scalziand View Post
https://www.honestbuildings.com/buil.../50-w-58th-st/

Actually, now that I look into it, 50w58th was sold in 2012 to BOB 57 LLC, with plans to demo in 2015. So that may just happen.


http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...66730240179896

I think this is one of the assemblages that RW and Crawford have been hinting at.

Yeah, plans are quietly coming together. The views of Central Park drives this and other similar developments. So I expect something tall here. They will at least get a head-start on whatever happens with the Park Lane.
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Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 1:38 AM
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New York sucks.

I wish those three buildings were landmarked; surely there are plenty of banal buildings on 57th street that can be razed for this tower. Will never get over the Drake Hotel and this will be another catastrophe. So many of the buildings that make or made New York beautiful came down or are coming down at rapid speed, while the hideousness remains untouched.

But at the end of the day it all comes down to $$, and this is NYC and not Paris where beauty is celebrated. It's much cheaper to buy these helpless beauties and knock them down vs razing the hulking 1970s dumps.

Last edited by 599GTO; Jan 16, 2014 at 1:52 AM.
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  #14  
Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 1:47 AM
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Originally Posted by 599GTO View Post
New York sucks.

I wish those two buildings were landmarked; surely there are plenty of banal buildings on 57th street that can be razed for this tower. Will never get over the Drake Hotel. So many of the buildings that make or made New York beautiful came down or are coming down at rapid speed, while the hideousness remains untouched.
One could also argue that so many buildings that make or will return the New York skyline to the beauty it is known for are going up at a rapid speed.

As is obvious, you can't just replace one site with another. Still, it will be disappointing to see these towers go, but there is nothing particularly landmark-worthy of them. The value to me is in variety of scale on the block. But do I need to see a townhouse on that stretch of 57th? Not really. That stretch of 57th is turning into something else, those townhouses may no longer have a place there.
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Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 1:54 AM
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Originally Posted by NYguy View Post
One could also argue that so many buildings that make or will return the New York skyline to the beauty it is known for are going up at a rapid speed.

As is obvious, you can't just replace one site with another. Still, it will be disappointing to see these towers go, but there is nothing particularly landmark-worthy of them. The value to me is in variety of scale on the block. But do I need to see a townhouse on that stretch of 57th? Not really. That stretch of 57th is turning into something else, those townhouses may no longer have a place there.
We can't be so sure. Look at that horrendous pile that Barnett is throwing up on 57th St. If Tower Verre and Steinway tower were the norm, it wouldn't bother me as much.

The general state of architecture in this city has me on edge.
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Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 1:58 AM
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Originally Posted by 599GTO View Post
We can't be too sure. Look at that horrendous pile that Barnett is throwing up on 57th St.
Yeah, we don't know, but we can't just freeze development because of it. I can't recall the address right now, but remember the lone townhouse that stood while Rockefeller Plaza got built around it? It's the natural evolution of Manhattan. It wasn't always covered with these tall skyscrapers.


http://www.scoutingny.com/about-that...-sixth-avenue/

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Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 2:09 AM
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Man, I wish u could pick these old beauts up and relocate.
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Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 2:21 AM
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Man, I wish u could pick these old beauts up and relocate.
You can. The ability more than exists to deconstruct these facades piece by piece and reconstruct them on a new frame. It just takes deep pockets and a owner that cares enough to undertake such a thing. Plenty of building have been facadectomised in place, but I would think reconstructing elsewhere would actually be easier.
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Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 2:28 AM
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Can they not use those facades and incorporate them? It happens here in Toronto all the time (though sometimes it looks pretty bad). Would definitely be sad to see those buildings go.
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  #20  
Old Posted Jan 16, 2014, 2:29 AM
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Rizzoli was an awesome store back in the day

Although I understand the economic rationale for its impending demise, I can remember spending very pleasant times leafing through very beautiful (and expensive) architecture books back in the 80s before the wealth of photos these hallowed pages now provide. RIP, Rizzoli, and thanks for the memories.

To the new developers: build something worthy of Rizzoli!
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