Monday, April 15, 2013

Another Tall Apartment Tower Slated for the Far West Side

The boom is back on the Far West Side. In addition to the Related Companies Hudson Yards project and Brookfield Properties Manhattan West complex, Larry Silverstein is moving forward with a new 60-story residential tower at 514 Eleventh Avenue.  Silverstein is roughing out designs for the new tower that will rise across the street from his twin Silver Towers, which also rise to 60 stories, and will make for an interesting trio on the skyline.

Silverstein Properties has developed two large residential projects on the West Side with more than 2,000 units combined in Silver Towers, the twin-towered rental buildings at 600 West 42nd Street, and the 41-story tower at 1 River Place. The development firm is currently building the 72-story 4 World Trade Center, the retail base of 3 World Trade Center and 2 World Trade Center to street level.

The new Silverstein building would be part of a residential construction boom on the West Side. Brookfield Office Properties has even changed plans at its Manhattan West project at Ninth Avenue and 33rd Street and is now considering adding as many as 900 residential units to a formerly entirely office project.

Extell Development owns the adjacent parcel at 502 West 41st Street, and The Atelier II – a 61-story condominium at 605 West 42nd Street - has just begun construction right around the corner. Piece by piece, a new community is finally coming together.

The project is also down the block from the 62-story MiMA, meaning things sure are getting crowded by the river. The retail portion of the project is expected to be between 150,000 and 250,000 square feet, the developer’s said.

The ground floor is important to driving development, apparently, because Mr. Silverstein is also eager to get his old friends at the Port Authority to take space in another neighboring tower project, where he hopes they would park their buses, and presumably provide some money to help get the project of the ground and persuade banks in making the necessary construction loans.

Silverstein will partner with Mercedes-Benz of Manhattan, which owns the land. The site is the former showroom for the luxury automaker, which relocated to 555 West 53rd Street last year.

Now, if only they could open that extra 7-Train stop at 42nd Street...

E-J Electric Flying High at JFK’s Terminal 5

E-J Electric Installation Company is in the midst of a multiyear project for Turner Construction at New York City‘s John F. Kennedy Airport. The contractor is wiring the newly constructed $875 million, 635,000-square-foot JetBlue Airways terminal, which includes 26 gates.
The terminal has begun servicing 360 flights in and out daily. E-J Electric is providing the electric installation, including switchgear, feeders, low-voltage data and fire safety, and supplemental power from three generators. 

The Y-shaped Terminal 5 building connects to JetBlue’s previous location, Terminal 6, once the Trans World Airlines Flight Center used by TWA. T5 offers modern facilities and room for growth, as the airline continues to expand its operations and both domestic and international flights.

JetBlue, JFK’s fastest growing airline, started flying in and out of the airport a decade ago with just one gate for a handful of flights. Since then, JetBlue grew a gate at a time, reaching the 13 gates maximum that were available to it at Terminal 6.

In 2005, the airline added seven temporary gates in a separate facility, requiring passengers to take a JetBlue bus to access their planes. As a result, the airline needed a permanent space and began planning T5, making allowances for continued expansion.

The airline’s architect designed T5 to include 26 gates, with 13 on each end of the Y and room for 10 more. The company’s T5 master plan included up to 20 security lanes, the departure and arrival gates, free Wi-Fi access throughout the entire terminal, 22 restaurants and food outlets, retail stores, and large children’s area.

JetBlue hired Turner Construction as general contractor, and Turner employed a total of 80 subcontractors, including E-J Electric for the electrical portion.

E-J Electric and Turner already have completed numerous projects together, including Yankee Stadium, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Interfaith Hospital and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

E-J Electric, whose electricians have worked at JFK for years, was selected to do electrical wiring tasks, including both normal and emergency power in addition to low voltage.

Since E-J Electric’s workers already had considerable experience in airport work, getting them to comply with Federal Aviation Administration and Port Authority regulations was fairly straightforward. For instance, each electrician must gain security clearance on a job-by-job basis. This project required all workers to take a safety training class before starting work on the project. They also had to carry a picture ID badge at all times.