Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Demolition Set for Graffiti Mecca 5Pointz, $300M Redevelopment

After nine months, the owners of the iconic 5-Pointz building in Long Island City, have finally secured a permit to demolish the structure. Developer Jerry Wolkoff plans to replace the building with a pair of residential towers — one 47-stories high, the other 41 stories. The $300 million project is slated to begin early next year, and provide for thousands of construction jobs. Demolition of the former graffiti-mecca will begin within two weeks.

The owner has plans to dramatically remaking the entire block along Jackson Avenue next to the Court Square subway station.

The project at 45-46 Davis Street would encompass the entire city block along Jackson Avenue, bordered by Davis and Crane Streets and the Sunnyside Yards.

The Wolkoff family is planning to replace 5Pointz with two massive residential towers — 47 and 41 stories tall.

The residential complex will reach 498 feet at its tallest point and will encompass a little more than one million square feet — 977,086 devoted to residential space and 39,765 set aside for commercial use.

There will be 1116 market rate apartments across the two structures, along with 210 affordable housing units. The majority of units would be 1-bedroom apartments and the rest would be a mix of studios and 2-bedrooms

Plans include a mix of shops and restaurants, a supermarket, an open-air concourse between the towers and a park. The base of the two buildings would be set aside for retail shops and artists' galleries. There would also be a public park in the rear of the site.

Wolkoff said the development would include studio space for artists, as well as public space for artists to show their work.

There would also be commercial space on the ground floor, parking for 250 cars, bicycle parking within the building, storage and pedestrian walkways.

Since the early 1990s, aerosol artists have transformed the decaying post-industrial relic next to the Court Square subway station into a renowned work of urban art.

Graffiti artists had used every inch of the building's exterior as a canvas and outdoor exhibit space for years.

The building housed scores of artists’ studios until 2009, when an outer stairway collapsed, crushing and nearly killing one of the building's tenants.

"It's not going to end, it's just transitioning," said David Wolkoff, whose family has owned the building for decades. He said the warehouse was never intended to be a permanent site.

Artists’ efforts to save the graffiti covered building in 2013, were unsuccessful.

The project has been on the drawing board for a while and the Wolkoff family, which has owned the old factory since 1971, and long supported the work of the graffiti artists. They have decided it is time to replace it with a new development.

“Long Island City is growing, and we think that now is the time to add to the neighborhood,” said Wolkoff.

Wolkoff purchased the old Neptune Water Meter factory (built in 1901) in the early 1970s, with dreams of building a one million square foot office building on the property. Plans stalled when Wolkoff failed to find businesses willing to move to Long Island City.

The New York City Council approved a special permit granting Wolkoff permission to build residential high rises on the property in October 2013. The owner needed the City Council's approval because plans call for buildings that are 41 and 47 floors, respectively--heights higher than zoning regulations in that area allow.
Visit Our Sponsors

Page Views
Since October 1, 2011