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Old October 14th, 2006, 12:02 AM   #461
krull
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400 Fifth Avenue (Proposed):





Community Board approves air rights transfer for 400 Fifth Avenue


13-OCT-06

The planned mixed-use tower at 400 Fifth Avenue on the northwest corner at 36th Street took a giant step forward last night when Community Board 5 passed a resolution that endorsed transfer of development rights to the site.

The board voted 27 to 10 with 1 abstention last night to approve a resolution requesting the Landmarks Preservation Commission to issue a report to the City Planning Commission authorizing the transfer of 173,000 square feet of development rights from the former Tiffany Building at 401 Fifth Avenue, a landmark, to a new building planned at 400 Fifth Avenue in exchange for a preservation plan and continued maintenance plan for the landmark building.

The proposed tower will be 631 feet 10 inches tall including a 40-foot-high mechanical space at the top of the building which will have a ribbed crown that flares outward slightly and will be illuminated at night. The tower will be setback on an 11-story base.

Michael T. Sillerman, the co-chair of the land-use department at the law firm of Kramer, Levin, Naftalis & Frankel LLP, who represented the developer at the meeting, told the board that the base of the proposed tower will have a luxury hotel that will occupy floors 4 through 16. Floors 17 through 56 will have corner windows, unlike the lower floors, and they will contain about 360 condominium apartments. The hotel is anticipated to have almost 200 rooms.

Mr. Sillerman said that “an additional icing on the cake” is that the developer is giving an easement to the Landmarks Conservancy to oversee the maintenance program for 401 Fifth Avenue. He also noted that the 21.6 F.A.R. (floor-to-area ratio) of the proposed tower does not produce a building much taller than an as-of-right development with “wedding-cake” setbacks.

The 57-story skyscraper has been designed by Gwathmey Siegel & Associates for Bi & Di Real Estate SpA, which acquired the site in May from Tessler Developments LLC and Lehman Brothers. Tessler and Lehman had, in fact, commissioned Gwathmey Siegel to design the project. Bi & Di Real Estate SpA is based in Italy and has developed offices and resorts in Europe and Cuba and this is its first project in the United States.

The site has been cleared for several months and had been acquired by Tessler Developments LLC from The Chetrit Group for about $150 million.

A previous design for the site was prepared The Chetrit Group by Peter Magill of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and that called for a low-rise based topped by a rectilinear tower of about 50 stories with a highly textured façade of undulating faceted elements and slightly angled windows. The Community Board had voted against the proposed air-rights transfers in 2004 and 2005 when presented by previous owners.

The new design retains the general massing of the previous design but makes more contextual gestures in its base to the surrounding buildings on both sides of the avenue that are quite similar in their Italian Palazzo-style architecture. The new design is also much more contextual with its own base and with the façades of the Empire State Building, two blocks to the south.

The new design also differs from the old design in that its corner is rounded, a treatment that Gwathmey Siegel & Associates has also employed in its design of a planned new residential building at 240 Park Avenue South.

The landmarks committee of the community board had voted to approve the resolution by a vote of 5 to 4 and the co-chairs of the committee, Layla Law Gisiko and Joyce Matz, both voted against it and argued strongly against it at the board’s full meeting. Ms. Gisiko expressed dissatisfaction with the rounded corner and noted that the landmark building already has a “preservation plan” in effect. Ms. Matz claimed that the planned tower is too big.

The project is expected to come up for review in the future before the board’s zoning committee.


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Old October 14th, 2006, 04:43 AM   #462
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The tower is nothing special IMO,but it will look good at night if built.
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Old October 14th, 2006, 05:44 AM   #463
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phobos View Post
The tower is nothing special IMO,but it will look good at night if built.
This rendering below is an old rendering... But its the same massing and height of this new design... Here is how it will look like on the skyline...


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Old October 14th, 2006, 11:43 AM   #464
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looking great, nice addition to the skyline
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Old October 15th, 2006, 08:46 AM   #465
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I always wonder will there ever be a building next to the empire building that will be equal or taller. That would be pretty interesting to see.
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Old October 15th, 2006, 05:03 PM   #466
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The idea of tall towers very close to the Empire State Building would make it blend in more within it's surrounding environment.

Personally, I have mixed feelings about that.

That render makes it look akward.

Perhaps if there were more tall towers nearby as well it might look more balanced.

Last edited by fish; October 15th, 2006 at 05:12 PM.
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Old October 15th, 2006, 06:37 PM   #467
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fish View Post
The idea of tall towers very close to the Empire State Building would make it blend in more within it's surrounding environment.

Personally, I have mixed feelings about that.

That render makes it look akward.

Perhaps if there were more tall towers nearby as well it might look more balanced.

I know... but it all have to start somewhere.
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Old October 16th, 2006, 03:23 AM   #468
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Yeah, the empire state being alone out there is part of its dominating character, but personally I wouldn't mind seeing some talls deveolped around it, someday manhattan will have 600+ footers from end to end.
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Old October 16th, 2006, 06:56 AM   #469
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaRaJeVo-City View Post
I always wonder will there ever be a building next to the empire building that will be equal or taller. That would be pretty interesting to see.
For some reason I believe they have some zoning laws around the ESB, so that it remains sole and tall.
Because quite frankly, the ESB is best alone, a little on the side from the rest of midtown, and if we had other highrises connect it, it would ruin its charm, and also it won't look as tall as it really is.
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Old October 16th, 2006, 08:39 AM   #470
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The tower looks lonly out there just like the empire state building.
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Old October 17th, 2006, 08:47 AM   #471
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THE MANHATTAN PROJECT



SEE SPAN: When work is finished, the
Flatbush Avenue approach of the
Manhattan Bridge will look like this
computer image.



By RICH CALDER
October 16, 2006

Here's a first glimpse of Brooklyn's future welcome mat.

The long-neglected Flatbush Avenue corridor into Brooklyn via the Manhattan Bridge will soon get a much needed facelift. The Bloomberg administration is investing about $15 million on beautifying and re-creating a grand gateway to downtown Brooklyn, officials said.

An architectural rendering commissioned by the city's Economic Development Corporation obtained by the Post envisions the avenue's sidewalks filled with large trees and better lighting.

Donna Walcavage, the project's architect, said the sculpture "should be tall and very imposing to fit the area, make a statement, and serve as a signature for entering Brooklyn."

The project focuses on four-fifths of a mile along Flatbush Avenue south from Tillary Street in downtown Brooklyn to Hanson Place in Fort Greene.

Construction is expected to begin next year and completed by 2009.


Copyright 2006NYP Holdings, Inc.
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Old October 18th, 2006, 03:36 AM   #472
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krull View Post
THE MANHATTAN PROJECT



SEE SPAN: When work is finished, the
Flatbush Avenue approach of the
Manhattan Bridge will look like this
computer image.



By RICH CALDER
October 16, 2006

Here's a first glimpse of Brooklyn's future welcome mat.

The long-neglected Flatbush Avenue corridor into Brooklyn via the Manhattan Bridge will soon get a much needed facelift. The Bloomberg administration is investing about $15 million on beautifying and re-creating a grand gateway to downtown Brooklyn, officials said.

An architectural rendering commissioned by the city's Economic Development Corporation obtained by the Post envisions the avenue's sidewalks filled with large trees and better lighting.

Donna Walcavage, the project's architect, said the sculpture "should be tall and very imposing to fit the area, make a statement, and serve as a signature for entering Brooklyn."

The project focuses on four-fifths of a mile along Flatbush Avenue south from Tillary Street in downtown Brooklyn to Hanson Place in Fort Greene.

Construction is expected to begin next year and completed by 2009.


Copyright 2006NYP Holdings, Inc.
Awesome... Brooklyn is constantly changing!
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Old October 18th, 2006, 03:29 PM   #473
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fish View Post
The idea of tall towers very close to the Empire State Building would make it blend in more within it's surrounding environment.

Personally, I have mixed feelings about that.

That render makes it look akward.

Perhaps if there were more tall towers nearby as well it might look more balanced.

First of all, the rendering (the older one) is superimposed on an older picture of the skyline - 325 5th Ave is not on there, and from that angle you will also be able to see skyhouse (55 stories) and the saya (47-60 stories, depending on who you believe) once they are completed. then there's also the epic (55 stories) and all the construction along 6th ave to the southwest (bunch of buildings in the works; 30-47 stories each). And I'm probably forgetting some here.

Second, if the Penn Plaza Plan B/ MSG move to farley extension ever does get built, you are potentially looking at two 90+ stories towers just over a block west of esb. how's that for starters?
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Old October 19th, 2006, 09:45 PM   #474
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A couple of minor projects that I have found on places on the web.

New Museum of Contemporary Art

Rendering


Current site


The Mosaic

Rendering


Current site


23rd St and Madison Ave

Rendering
[img]http://i10.************/2a0185z.jpg[/img]

Current site
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Old October 19th, 2006, 11:04 PM   #475
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Does anyone know if the Brooklyn Public library has started constructing its Visual Arts Library near the BAM?
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Old October 19th, 2006, 11:54 PM   #476
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That last project looks amazing, but the building which will be demolished looks nice too...
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Old October 20th, 2006, 05:03 AM   #477
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APPEALS COURT RULES 9/11 WAS TWO ATTACKS

The second circuit court has upheld the jury verdict from December 2004 that ruled the events of Sept. 11 were two separate incidents and the insurance companies should treat them as such. This ruling means Larry Silverstein, president and CEO of Silverstein Properties, is owed $4.6 billion, a representative for Silverstein, tells GlobeSt.com.

In a statement, Silverstein says, "Over the past five years, the World Trade Center insurers have engaged in an all-out campaign to shirk their legal and moral obligation to honor their policies and help finance the rebuilding of the World Trade Center."

Silverstein goes on to say all the money he receives "has been committed to the rebuilding, including the community-oriented retail planned for the site and the office buildings, 40 percent of which will be owned by government."

As reported by GlobeSt.com, a trial by jury initially ruled that the events were one incident in May 2004. A second trial reversed the verdict, siding with Silverstein.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 05:29 AM   #478
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oh so that's what they're building on the 23rd street at Madison sq!
But that place is really tight, they're going to be pushing the floor to height ratio to the extremes for this one, but the views are going to be awesome, it's looking north to midtown, unobstructed view, damn they're going to sell like hotcakes!
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Old October 20th, 2006, 09:26 AM   #479
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So far so good...


Study Shows Data for Claim of Atlantic Yards’ Benefits


By NICHOLAS CONFESSORE
October 20, 2006

A state agency has released documentation for its estimates of the economic impact of the controversial Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn, just weeks after the agency’s chairman said he would not make it public until after the agency’s board votes on the project later this year.

In promoting the $4.2 billion mixed-use real estate project, the agency, the Empire State Development Corporation, has asserted that the project would generate $1.4 billion worth of tax revenues beyond what building it would cost the city and state in subsidies and other assistance. Since the agency supplied that figure in July, however, it had declined to release the study supporting it, despite requests from elected officials in the area, Brooklyn residents and journalists.

In an interview with WNET television two weeks ago, Charles A. Gargano, the agency’s chairman, said the figure was based on “internal documents, working documents” that were exempt from the state’s Freedom of Information Law.

Jessica Copen, a spokeswoman for Mr. Gargano, maintained yesterday that the documents were privileged, but said the agency had decided to make them public this week as a gesture of “good government.”

Atlantic Yards is planned for 8.7 million square feet near Downtown Brooklyn and would include housing, office and retail space and an arena for the Nets basketball team. According to the study, the project would generate $1.9 billion in sales and income tax revenue for the city and state over 30 years, in today’s dollars.

About $160 million of that would represent one-time revenues from the project’s construction, and $1.4 billion would come from taxes generated over the 30 years by the more than 6,500 new jobs the agency estimates the project would create, directly and indirectly.

Agency officials estimate that the project would generate an additional $366 million in taxes on hotel visitors, arena tickets and concessions and the earnings of Nets players.

In return, the study estimates, taxpayers would contribute $492.9 million to the project. That would include direct subsidies of $200 million, bond financing costs and sales and mortgage recording tax exemptions.

The analysis does not include the $100 million the project’s developer, Forest City Ratner, has agreed to pay the Metropolitan Transportation Authority for development rights over the Vanderbilt railyards, which make up about a third of the project site.

Forest City Ratner is also the development partner in building a new Midtown headquarters for The New York Times Company.

Because it is hard to determine how many residential tenants of the project would be new to New York, the analysis excludes them as a source of new revenue, as well as the cost for possible increases in municipal services they might require.

Perhaps more significantly, the study also excludes public subsidies for the project’s planned 2,250 units of housing priced below market rates. Those subsidies are still under negotiation, but could substantially increase the public cost of the project.

The agency’s study “does not disclose the public cost of the Ratner project, and the claimed benefits are highly speculative,” said Daniel Goldstein, a spokesman for Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn, a coalition of groups opposed to the project. “We can only assume the E.S.D.C. is hiding the public cost because it is too ugly or controversial to disclose, while the developer’s profit is enormous.”

Aside from uncertainty over the magnitude of public subsidies for the project, the new study leaves unanswered major questions about the Atlantic Yards’ long-term finances.

“That is a skeleton projection of state and local tax revenue,” said Assemblyman James F. Brennan of Brooklyn. Mr. Brennan has requested a detailed accounting of the project’s financial return to Forest City — figures not covered in the new study — and for the costs of each element of the mixed-use project, like the arena.

Such requests have so far been rebuffed. Mr. Brennan said he believed that a fuller financial picture might undercut supporters’ contention that the project’s enormous size and density could not be reduced without endangering its economic viability.

“We don’t know how much money the arena’s going to make,” Mr. Brennan said. “We don’t know how much the private rental housing is going to make. We don’t know how much the luxury housing and commercial property will make. Therefore, we do not know whether the arena or the affordable housing are independently economically viable. If they are, or if they only need minimal subsidy, then there is no rationale for the size.”

Joe DePlasco, a spokesman for Forest City Ratner, said the company had complied with all disclosure requirements.

“We are in the midst of a public review process and have provided to relevant agencies required information involving the Atlantic Yards project,” he said.


Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Last edited by krull; October 20th, 2006 at 09:38 AM.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 09:27 AM   #480
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Expect more development in Queens...


City Plans Middle-Income Project on Queens Waterfront



Land along the East River in Queens would be the site of up to 5,000 rental apartments for the middle
class, under plans announced Thursday.



By DAMIEN CAVE
October 20, 2006

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced plans yesterday to buy 24 acres of Queens waterfront property for a towering development, which would be the largest middle-income housing complex built in New York City in more than 30 years.

Under the proposal, the city would bring as many 5,000 new rental units to a largely industrial area of Long Island City, where chic restaurants are just beginning to appear amid low-slung factories and three-family homes.

The new apartments, Mr. Bloomberg said, would be for families of four earning between $60,000 and $145,000 a year, who would pay $1,200 to $2,500 a month in rent.


Though the ratio of middle-income apartments to market-rate units would depend on environmental studies and potential cleanup costs, city officials said they were hoping to make the entire complex affordable and to keep it that way for 40 years.

“Not only will it give birth to a new community that’s going encourage new growth in Long Island City, and complement our efforts to revive the city’s waterfront,” Mr. Bloomberg said, “it will also provide much needed housing for the real backbone of our city, our teachers, nurses, police officers.”

The mayor emphasized that the deal — in which the city purchased the land from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for about $146 million — was “a smart investment” that exemplified his administration’s plan to build and preserve 165,000 units of lower-cost housing over 10 years.

The mayor compared the proposed complex to the most ambitious previous efforts to create middle-class housing in New York: Starrett City, which added 5,888 new units to Brooklyn in 1974, and Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village in Manhattan, a sprawling set of 110 brick towers with 11,232 apartments that has been a working-class haven for six decades.

Indeed, the sale of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village, across the East River from the new site, seemed to hover over the deal announced yesterday.

On Tuesday, Metropolitan Life, the owner of the Manhattan complexes, agreed to sell the property for $5.4 billion to a real estate firm, in a plan that could lead to the loss of many of the buildings’ rent-regulated units over the next few decades. Even as tenants pulled together a bid with support from the City Council, the mayor stayed on the sidelines, drawing rebukes from housing activists who questioned his dedication to affordability.

Deputy Mayor Daniel L. Doctoroff had said it was a matter of efficient use of public dollars: preserving the historic units would have cost about $107,000 per unit. In contrast, he said yesterday, the units in the new Queens development would be built for about $54,000 each in city funds.

“So we can get two units here for every one there,” he said at the press conference announcing the deal, “plus we get a major increase in the housing stock.”

Mayor Bloomberg interjected, “You must remember that a lot of the housing units in Stuyvesant and Peter Cooper Village are affordable and will stay affordable for many, many years.”

He said the new development “really is a net plus to the city.” He said its location on the water, where it looks out on the United Nations and the Empire State Building, showed the city’s determination to weave affordable housing into areas that might otherwise have become enclaves for the wealthy.

“This is as good a piece of property as you will find,” Mr. Bloomberg said.

The city plans to complete the purchase within 90 days, develop a master plan for a mixed-use development including retail shops and parks, and then solicit bids from private builders, perhaps as early as next year.

Housing activists reacted mainly with praise, but also with measures of skepticism.

Some questioned the income limits, suggesting that they overshot the families in greatest need. But the larger issue seemed to be one of scope and emphasis.

Michael McKee, treasurer of the Tenants Political Action Committee, and Tom Waters, a housing analyst with the Community Service Society, repeated a longstanding complaint that new construction will never be enough to offset the loss of rental units that are rapidly moving from regulated to market rate.

A study in May by the Community Service Society found that between 1990 and 2005, nearly a quarter of the roughly 121,000 apartments built under federal and state subsidy programs dating from the 1960’s and 70’s left those programs. This year alone, by the authors’ count, New York City will lose more than 5,000 apartments for low- and middle-income families.

“This is a blind spot on the part of the mayor and the administration,” Mr. McKee said. “They are stubbornly refusing to recognize that they are taking one step forward, three steps back.”

Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, a Westchester Democrat who heads a committee of the State Legislature that oversees public authorities, also questioned whether the deal would make efficient use of the Port Authority’s land.

He said the sale price of about $29 a square foot was “infinitely less than what the market would bear.”

Yet for many in Queens, the project seemed to be welcome, and overdue. The waterfront area known as Queens West, of which the land sold yesterday is a part, has been the subject of promised development since the early 1980’s. Had the city’s bid for the 2012 Olympic Games been accepted, the site would have been used for the Olympic Village. The new development would fill the fallow land just south of a handful of high-rise apartment buildings that have appeared only in the past few years.

“This is one more example of how Long Island City is in the midst of a renaissance,” said Councilman Eric Gioia, who represents Long Island City and lives in one of the buildings along the water. “For too long, our waterfront has been neglected and forgotten.”


Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company
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