Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Colossal Apartment Building to Rise in Hell’s Kitchen

TF Cornerstone is preparing to break ground on a 992,000-square-foot residential development at the corner of 57th Street and 11th Avenue in Hell's Kitchen. The new $550-million building will stand just over 40 stories tall and have a total of 1,028 units, which will make it one of the largest apartment buildings in New York City. The project at 606 West 57th Street will replace a Lexus and Acura dealership presently on the site, and include 220 units of moderate-income housing and a public school.

Standing just 42-stories, height is not the focus here... the structure is about sheer density.

606 West 57th Street will be composed of two 28-story structures with a 14-story cube cantilevered on top; it seems that even when overhangs aren’t necessary, they are becoming a common feature to new construction these days.

The stacking of multiple boxes will help to create a building that isn’t completely overbearing, allowing light and air through the structure itself.

The City Council's Land Use Committee negotiated a deal with the developer to add an additional 10,000 square feet of “affordable housing” - that would be affordable only to the top end of middle-income families, earning roughly $150,000 a year.

The additional 10,000 square feet would equate to 15 new apartments, bringing the total amount of so-called "affordable" units to 220.

The council members were focused on the neighborhood surrounding the West 57th Street development, where they feel there is a need for moderate-income housing that could go to people who presently live in the community.

Extell Development’s massive Riverside Center South on the Hudson River, between West 59th and 72nd streets, already includes hundreds of such, so-called, "affordable" units.

The developer agreed to a smaller garage with fewer parking spaces, to build a public pre-Kindergarten school, and to employ only union builders and staff the complex with 32BJ employees. The project will include 60,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and underground parking for up to 500 cars.

The site is currently occupied by several low-slung buildings, and plans are moving forward for demolition.

TF Cornerstone anticipates construction will begin next spring and will take two years to complete.

Across the street, another transformative residential project – The Pyramid – is moving forward. Most of the attention 57th Street receives is focused between Broadway and Park Avenue, but the street’s largest developments are, in fact, on the Hudson River.

Although 606 West 57th Street has cleared its final hurdle, it still needs approval from the City Council before it can become a reality.

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