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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:11 PM   #721
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MoMA Monster Refuses to Shrink: NY City Council Committee Hearing

Lee Rosenbaum's cultural commentary



I've got to bring you the news from the hearing I attended today on the MoMA/Hines tower. As your may remember, Jean Nouvel's skyscraper had grown, in stages, to 1,250 feet (the height of the Empire State Building, without its antenna). The City Planning Commission cried out, "Too tall!" and lopped off 200 feet.

But look out, earthlings...

...it's BA-A-A-A-CK!

MoMA's four heavy hitters (architect Jean Nouvel, Museum of Modern Art director Glenn Lowry, and the project's lawyer and its developer) were at City Hall today, trying to revive their 85-story giant. This would require convincing the NY City Council to overturn the City Planning Commission's mandate.

At today's hearing held by the Zoning and Franchises Subcommittee of the Council's Land Use Committee, David Penick, managing partner for developer Hines on this project, argued that the undertaking might not be financially viable at the reduced height, which would also undermine its "architectural integrity."

Near the beginning of his testimony, Penick said that the shrinkage would force the tower to lose its 150 luxury condominiums, which were planned for the top floors. Later, he said it would keep the condos but lose the 120 hotel units. The Council's Land Use Committee chair, Melinda Katz caught that self-contradiction, whereupon Penick stated that the hotel units would probably be eliminated, not the potentially more lucrative condos.

During a break in the action, I caught up with Penick and Nouvel outside the meeting room. Penick told me that lopping off 200 feet of height (a loss of 100,000 square feet from the building's proposed 658,000 square feet) would mean a loss of 16 of the planned 85 stories. He conceded that the project, even if it got government approval, would not start any time soon; it would await improved economic conditions.

Nouvel told me he was uncertain whether he would continue with the project if the tower was shortened to 1,050 feet (which would make it the height of another skyline icon, the Chrysler Building). At the hearing, Nouvel unveiled "a new proposal for the top," including reflective "fins" that would be be seen from certain vantage points around the tower, but not others. "There would be strong differences of experiences of the top as you moved around the building....It is a very elegant building."

In addition to affecting the architecture, a smaller project would mean less of a windfall for the nonprofits (St. Thomas Church, the University Club, the American Folk Art Museum) that have agreed to sell air rights for the project, because less space would be needed. MoMA may also sell air rights for the project, which it had previously acquired from the University Club.

No vote was taken by the subcommittee today. Whatever happens, MoMA already has in hand the $125 million that Hines paid for the land adjacent to the museum---the site of the proposed tower. The new building would include on its lower floors space for MoMA's next expansion. Considering what's happened to the real estate market since that land sale, it now looks like a great financial deal for MoMA, not so great for the developer.

In his testimony, Lowry explained his previously unsupported claim that the new expansion would not cause a significant attendance jump (which would further rile the neighbors): He argued there was a limited audience for modern art and that he believed MoMA, at about 2.5 million annual visitors, is now "very close to the maximum size of our audience."

Councilman Daniel Garodnick, whose constituents include neighborhood opponents to the project, declared that proponents' claims that the tower would have minimal impact on the surrounding area were "hard to follow and hard to swallow."





http://www.artsjournal.com/culturegr...to_shrink.html
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:48 PM   #722
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The article states only that "....No vote was taken by the subcommittee today...."

What kind of incomplete reporting is that? When is the vote expected? At the next meeting? If so, when is that meeting? Did the reporter not think to ask these questions?
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:56 PM   #723
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The capital of the skyscrapers wanting to chop off a piece of this beauty is to me like Bill Gates wanting to earn less money.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 03:45 AM   #724
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Offereins View Post
The capital of the skyscrapers wanting to chop off a piece of this beauty is to me like Bill Gates wanting to earn less money.
Hum... Decent analogy but how about: "Chopping off that building is like ordering a T-bone steak with no T"
Kinda fits the subject better but my wits aren't connecting the dots so well tonight...
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Old October 16th, 2009, 06:59 PM   #725
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This bureaucratic bullshit really wears on me. Are they going the ******' thing or not?
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Old October 18th, 2009, 01:40 PM   #726
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The rise and succes of America of 1900 and after W.O 2 hase come to a end! The US and N.Y needs a new spirit ! BUILD THAT THING and stop with bureaucratic bullsh*t. Wheres the progress in America??? In other country's they build 300m or even +600m crapers like nothing. That building from Nouvel is a good design !!! approved it !!!
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Old October 18th, 2009, 01:57 PM   #727
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its funny that the same bureaucratic bullshit is happening in the space industry, in 2 years the US wont be able to send humans in space for the first time in 40 years, and instead of speeding up to fill the gap, they are slowing down even more.

Long live the US!
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Old October 18th, 2009, 11:13 PM   #728
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this tower will be built eventually, the question is only at which height! for now the most realistic height seems to be 320m/1050ft. it's still a supertall .
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Old October 18th, 2009, 11:27 PM   #729
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this is incredible that in NYC people are complaining about "how high" a tower is going to be........ This is New York.. we should be discussing about who is going to build the "tallest building" not the other way around...... Since when we became a city of "whiners"
The other cities that compite with us, might be more than happy to hear this...!
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Old October 19th, 2009, 02:04 AM   #730
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this is incredible that in NYC people are complaining about "how high" a tower is going to be........ This is New York..!
Agreed 1,000,000 percent!


Just disgusting!
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Old October 19th, 2009, 05:27 AM   #731
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Yeah really, only the wtc complex, esb, times square, chryseler, an the times building are "tall", this one would stand out ellegantly and be a tremendus plus in the skyline. Please, DO NOT shrink it!
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Old October 20th, 2009, 03:36 PM   #732
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Nouvel is one of my very favorite architects. I love this design, cause despite it's futuristic shapes it fits perfectly in the skyline. I'm on the edge of nervous breakdown because of this, as mention above, "bureaucratic bullshit".

and the height is very important factor here - no cuts!
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Old October 20th, 2009, 05:03 PM   #733
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Quote:
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NY is very different from the US in terms of culture. If this were proposed anywhere else in the US (other than San Francisco which is also very different from the US), it would be very heavily supported.

Chicagoans are having orgasms over the Spire, a much taller tower that won't even be built.
Why is that though?
A new skyscraper goes up in NY every once in a blue moon, but in Chicago at least 3 pop up every year.
Why doesn't NY support new skyscrapers? Just curious...
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Old October 20th, 2009, 10:05 PM   #734
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jvrxs25 View Post
Why is that though?
A new skyscraper goes up in NY every once in a blue moon, but in Chicago at least 3 pop up every year.
Why doesn't NY support new skyscrapers? Just curious...
Uh...what?
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Old October 21st, 2009, 02:36 AM   #735
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Manhattan is known all over the world as an urban jungle.I don't understand why this building is being met with such harshness by some Manhattanites.P.S I made the last word up.
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Old October 21st, 2009, 10:00 PM   #736
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Manhattanese.
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Old October 21st, 2009, 10:08 PM   #737
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jvrxs25 View Post
Why is that though?
A new skyscraper goes up in NY every once in a blue moon, but in Chicago at least 3 pop up every year.
Why doesn't NY support new skyscrapers? Just curious...
Uh...what. There have been like 10 brand new 600 ft.+ skyscrapers in the last 3 years.
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 04:49 AM   #738
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This will make 4 new supertalls by the time this built
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 04:55 AM   #739
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why would you have a problem about it being a super tall if it is in a city of so many towers???
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 05:12 AM   #740
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It really depends on the neighborhood some people don't want tall building near or around their houses.
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