Monday, April 2, 2012

Extell Prepares For New Tower at 57th & Broadway

Extell Development continues to bulldoze its way across the city. The developer has begun work on another of its long-simmering projects: yet another soaring tower, at the corner of Broadway and 57th Street.

Extell assembled the T-shaped plot last decade and then took out a $256 million mortgage on it, leading to quite a bit of consternation when the Landmarks Preservation Commission unexpectedly decided 1780 Broadway and 225 West 57th Street were worth saving.

Extell fought off the effort by the LPC to preserve two of the structures in 2009.

225 West 57th Street, once owned by B.F. Goodrich, is part of a stretch of 1930's dealership buildings known as Automobile Row.

In the end, the commission agreed to a compromise deal, saving 1780 Broadway while allowing 225 West 57th Street to be torn down.

The site, like so many others at the moment, had remained quiet through the economic downturn, but has recently reawakened.

Extell has recently filed a series of demolition permits for various buildings along 57th and 58th streets. One of those buildings is now coming down, with others soon to follow.

The developer would not disclose whether the project had financing, but that has not stopped Extell before.

Demolition commenced years before construction started on either the One57 site or the International Gem Tower in the Diamond District, and both began construction using only Extell’s equity. As shown at One57, this strategy allowed the developer to act faster because Mr. Barnett did not need to wait for the wrecking ball, and his construction progress helped attract investors, a particularly challenging prospect during the current economic malaise.

As is typical, Extell has declined to discuss an architect or designs for the 57th and Broadway project.