Friday, February 20, 2015

Harlem’s Tallest Building Close to Breaking Ground

A large vacant lot between 124th and 125th streets, opposite the Metro-North station, will soon sprout Harlem’s tallest building. Rising up to 325 feet, 1800 Park Avenue will soon host a 24-story apartment tower housing 670 apartments across 486,500 square feet, with 73,460 square feet of retail space at street level. The project is being developed by Bruce Eichner‘s Continuum Company, which recently received financing to begin construction of an 800-foot condominium tower at 45 East 22nd Street, near Madison Square Park.

Despite slicing eight stories off the top of the original design, the new 325-foot residential structure will be the tallest building in Harlem, towering over the neighborhood with extraordinary views of the river and Central Park.

At 24 stories, 1800 Park Avenue will top the 19-story State Office Building on West 125th Street by a noticeable margin.

The Continuum Company picked up the 37,000 square-foot development site on the western side of Park Avenue for $65 million last year, and has hired ODA Architecture to design the project.

The site wraps the entire eastern end of the block between Madison and Park and East 125th and 124th streets.

Under New York City’s 80/20 program, 20 percent of the development’s 670 apartments will be set aside for affordable housing, while 536 of the apartments will rent at market-rates.

An East Harlem community board recently voted to approve a special zoning variance that will allow the project to include more retail space and less parking. Present zoning mandates that building developers provide parking spaces for 40% of all residential units.
“We think the trade-off between parking and retail is beneficial to the neighborhood,” said George Sarkissian, of Community Board 11, of the massive mixed-use project.

Construction on the retail portion of the project should be ready for occupancy within 24 months.

The 63,200 square-feet of ground floor and second-story retail will cut available parking to just 123 spots for the 670 unit complex.  Originally, the second floor was to have a garage with 304 parking spaces for building residents.

When completed, 1800 Park Avenue will have an indoor and outdoor lounge, a library, game room, exercise room and space for 343 bicycles to park, while reaching into the skyline as Harlem’s tallest structure.

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