Monday, June 9, 2014

65-Story One Vanderbilt to Rise near Grand Central

SL Green, the city’s largest office landlord, plans to build a 65-story tower directly west of Grand Central Terminal at 41 East 42nd Street, 150 feet taller than the landmark Chrysler Building, after the city proposed new zoning for the area. The 1.6-million-square-foot tower, to be known as One Vanderbilt, will occupy the entire block bound by 42nd and 43rd Streets between Vanderbilt and Madison Avenues, and would be the corporate home for TD Bank.
The new zoning would only regulate density and square footage on new construction projects, with no restrictions on building height.

One Vanderbilt will be the first tower to rise as part of the Midtown East re-zoning. Approaching 1,200 feet, the giant skyscraper will soar well beyond notable neighbors like The Chrysler Building and MetLife.

The project would transform the block between East 42nd and 43rd streets into a pedestrian plaza and create an underground connection between the new skyscraper and Grand Central.

The plan includes a public waiting room in the lobby of the tower for commuters, which would serve as a street level extension of the terminal, with its own train board.

The tower is part of a plan by Mayor Bill de Blasio to allow for new, taller office towers in one of New York’s premier office districts, while addressing the need for better transportation around Grand Central.

“We are going to keep New York City competitive, and do it through strategic investments and ground-up planning,” Mr. de Blasio said.

“These are the kind of policies that won’t just pay off today, but will lay the groundwork to keep districts like East Midtown thriving and attracting new business for decades to come.”

The initiative is designed to ensure that property owners provide for much-needed improvements at Grand Central Terminal to relieve subway station bottlenecks and create new public open space sought by local stakeholders.

SL Green's CEO will spend $100 million on transit infrastructure, which would help alleviate congestion in an area mainly served by the overburdened 4/5/6 line.

The city’s proposal revives a plan by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to rezone a 73-block area surrounding Grand Central.

During the mayoral election last year, Mr. de Blasio promised to have his own plan and address community concerns.

In the first stage, the city is proposing to begin reviewing a zoning change for what it is calling the Vanderbilt corridor, from 42nd to 47th Streets along Vanderbilt Avenue.

Developers would be allowed to build taller and larger buildings than currently permitted in exchange for substantive transportation improvements.

SL Green Realty Corporation, the city’s largest commercial landlord, dusted off its plan to build a 65-story tower on the 42nd Street block it owns, which had been a part of the Bloomberg proposal.

Developers could buy air rights from two landmark properties, Grand Central Terminal and the former Bowery Savings Bank building, which is owned by SL Green.
The company, as well as any other developers who want to build in the area, would have to go through the city’s land use review process, and should be under public review during the last three months of this year.

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