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Old March 28th, 2012, 02:56 AM   #1
desertpunk
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Unbuilt New York

Unbuilt New York
A look at what could have been.

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Old March 28th, 2012, 02:59 AM   #2
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New City Hall 1920s


http://citynoise.org/article/10675

The towering portion of a new civic center idealized in the 1920s.

Another City Hall proposal c. 1920
http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/
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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:11 AM   #3
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Frank Lloyd Wright Apartments 1927



In 1927, Frank Lloyd Wright designed three to four apartment buildings to be located in the East Village. At least one of the buildings would have been eighteen stories and two of them fourteen. He had been commissioned by the Reverend William Norman Guthrie of St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery, an unlikely patron given the location of the proposed towers. The octagonal towers, with alternating vertical and horizontal facades, cantilevered floors, and copper and glass exteriors, would have risen over the grave of Peter Stuyvesant in St. Mark’s cemetery and in place of 19th century row houses on East 10th and Stuyvesant Streets. The apartment towers would have been revolutionary for being constructed without any structural steel support and for attempting to bring part of the suburbs into the city. The “towers in the park” idea was heavily influenced by Le Corbusier. The project was scrapped as a result of the Depression. While, they were never built in New York, Wright used his designs as the basis for the Price Tower in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.

http://blog.modernmechanix.com/mags/...s_building.jpg
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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:17 AM   #4
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Gaudi Hotel 1909



In May 1908, Edward T. Carlton, an American hotelier, and William Gibbs McAdoo, the president of the New York and New Jersey Railroad Company, traveled to Spain to meet with the renowned Spanish architect, Antoni Gaudi (1852-1926) studied architecture in Barcelona, where he was surrounded by neo-classical and romantic designs. Gaudi became famous by reinterpreting these designs and working in the Art Nouveau and Art Moderne styles, and Sagrada Familia in Barcelona is considered to be his greatest work. Carlton and McAdoo sought to add a building based on Gaudi’s unique vision to the New York City skyline. He was asked to design a hotel that would be situated in Lower Manhattan. Gaudi designed multiple sketches of an 980 to 1,100 foot high hotel called the Hotel Atraccion (Hotel Attraction). It contained an exhibition hall, conference rooms, a theater, and five dining rooms, symbolizing the five continents. Had the hotel been built, it would have been the tallest building in New York City, and therefore in the United States. Sadly, this building would never be built (except in an alternative version of New York depicted in the television show fringe). Carlton wanted the hotel to serve the City’s wealthiest and most elite clientele. Gaudi’s remained true to his communist ideals, and he abandoned the project. According to another version of the story, Gaudi fell ill in 1909 and that brought about the end of the project. All that survive are conceptual sketches by Juan Matemala.

http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/
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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:20 AM   #5
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Broaday Temple 1923



In 1923, the Reverend Christian Reisner of the Methodist Church in Washington Heights conceived of a grand church complex to be located at Broadway and West 173rd Street. Reverend Reisner developed a 40-story church which would have contained a 2,000-seat nave, a five-story basement, a swimming pool, a bowling alley, and would have been topped off with a 75-foot-high rotating cross. John D. Rockefeller Jr. donated $100,000 for the church’s construction. Like the other buildings, the Depression stopped Reverend Reisner from realizing his dreams.

http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/
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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:31 AM   #6
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The Metropolitan Life Insurance Tower 1929


http://nyc-architecture.com/?p=1331

In 1929, the Metropolitan Life Bldg, comprising the 1893 12-story construction, the 1909 campanile-like tower and the 1919 north annex, was becoming too small to house the continual growing activities of the biggest insurance company. A new building was considered for the full block site between E24th and E25th Streets, designed by Corbett and Waid... which missed to be the highest in the world. The proposed 100-story telescoping tower would have reached a climax in the mountain-like style, with fluted walls, rounded fašades, like a compromise between the Irving Trust Bldg and the visionary Hugh Ferriss's drawings. But the 1929 crisis exploded and... was erected only what was previously considered as the base. From a rectangular pedestal rise multiple recessed volumes which have the particularity to become 30-degree angled from the 16th floor on each side of the building, resolving at last in an original dumbell-plan shape from the last setback. As the magnificent Ralph Walker's Irving Trust Bldg, the new Metropolitan Life Annex resembles as a complex structure, covered by a limestone-clad drapery, renouncing to the sacrosanct rigid orthogonal geometry. A brilliant success.

Lured to the project by the client's offer of a high salary and the chance to build a mile-high tower of steel, stone and glass, the, Columbia University-educated architect Harvey Wiley Corbett left his position on the Rockefeller Center design team in order to take up this project in 1928. While construction of this steel-framed structure proceeded through the Depression, the crash of 1929 ultimately reduced the scope of the project. The current office block was once intended to be the base of a mammoth skyscraper, but Corbett's longed-for skyscraper was never built. Clad in Alabama limestone with marble details and richly appointed marble lobbies, the vertically striated surfaces and streamlined undulating masses of this Art Deco building give it a slick if somewhat sinister appearance.

Only the base was built, between 1932 and 1950.


http://www.nyc-architecture.com/
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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:44 AM   #7
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The Fashion Building 1930




This proposed building was entitled “The Fashion Building” and was to be built on Fifth Avenue. It was designed by William Bergen Chalfant for Amos Parrish & Co in 1930:

http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/

image hosted on flickr

http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/

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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:48 AM   #8
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The Metropolitan Opera and tower 1926



Joesph Urban submitted this design in 1927 to a competition for a new Metropolitan Opera House. Urban’s design situated the opera house at the base of a skyscraper:

http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/
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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:52 AM   #9
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The Metropolitan Opera as part of Rockefeller's "Civic Center" 1929



John D. Rockefeller Jr. proposed this new civic center which included a space for the Metropolitan Opera. When the stock market crashed the Metropolitan Opera was unable to secure funding for a new building. As a result, Rockefeller redesigned his civic center into the Rockefeller Center we know today:

http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/
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Old March 28th, 2012, 03:59 AM   #10
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Chrysler Building proposals 1920s


http://newyork.untappedcities.com/20...t-i-buildings/
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Old March 28th, 2012, 04:02 AM   #11
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Larkin Tower 1925



Proposed in 1925, the Larkin Building would have contained up to 110 stories at 1,208 ft. and was to be located on West 42nd Street (the McGraw Hill Building currently occupies the site)

Hard times fell on this proposal as well as the Larkin Company, which went bankrupt in the 1930s.



http://reasonandlibertycentral.blogs...rand-code.html
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Old March 28th, 2012, 05:33 AM   #12
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They made the right choice over the Chrysler building. Those two proposals look horrible
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Old March 28th, 2012, 06:38 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3tmk View Post
They made the right choice over the Chrysler building. Those two proposals look horrible
Wouldn't look bad in Istanbul or Cairo!
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Old March 28th, 2012, 06:55 AM   #14
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The original Metropolitan Life Insurance Tower proposal =

The Fashion Building would have ruled too if not for the awkward massing.
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Old March 28th, 2012, 10:32 AM   #15
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The parkway proposal for chrystie and Forsyth was a stupid idea. I'm thankful it never happened, my childhood neighborhood would never have been! The Frank Lloyd Wright Apartments would have been revolutionary but I say it worked out for the better in the end. The Lower East Side did not need anymore towers in the park. The towers on first ave/2nd street and the projects along the east river were enough!
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Old March 28th, 2012, 11:09 AM   #16
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This one would have been rough too: The Zeckendorf West Side Airport!


http://longstreet.typepad.com/thesci...river-nyc.html


http://longstreet.typepad.com/thesci...river-nyc.html

First published in Life Magazine 1946:

The airport would have covered 144 city blocks from 24th to 71st Streets and from Ninth Avenue to the Hudson River. (The view above is looking south.) That's approximately 990 acres 200-feet above the streets of Manhattan.

To quote Life, Zeckendorf thinks the $3 billion price tag "can be paid off by rental income within 55 years after the project is completed." Further, and quite optimistically, "although the Manhattan terminal is still in the drawing-board stage and has not yet had approval of New York officials, the planners expect that the increasing tide of air travel will make their idea a necessity."


http://archidose.blogspot.com/2010/0...m-airport.html
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Old March 28th, 2012, 04:04 PM   #17
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What the hell happened after the war that made everyone lose their minds?
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Old March 28th, 2012, 05:30 PM   #18
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Thanks god that airport was never built. :-)
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Old March 28th, 2012, 06:20 PM   #19
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Awesome idea for a thread desertpunk! The amount of towers the Depression killed in NY is astounding. Here are a few of random projects from one of the links you provided:


"This 150-story structure would have been known as the Broadway-Church Building, bounded by Broadway, Church, Duane, and Worth Streets."


"This design by Emery Roth for the National Penn Colosseum was never built"

Source.


"The architect, responsible for Central Park West's San Remo and Eldorado, wanted the mammoth structure to take up the entire block on Washington Square South between West Broadway and Thompson Street, but was nipped in the bud when the Great Depression hit." Curbed.

More to come...
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Old March 28th, 2012, 06:26 PM   #20
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This was the original plan for the WTC. The plan for a WTC in Lower Manhattan actually goes back to 1943, and was a plan the Rockefellers were behind to keep Lower Manhattan a business hub because a lot of companies were relocating to Midtown at the time. This plan was actually on the East River, but was moved to the West Side as it became apparent that only a public agency with the power of eminent domain could build something like this in Manhattan, so the Port Authority was chosen because they had eminent domain power and had access to the constant flow of money coming in from tolls on bridges and tunnels. But the Port Authority is a joint venture between the State of NY, NJ, and city of NY, so the state of NJ questioned the east side project and basically killed it because they didn't see how an office building, hotel and convention center on the East Side of Manhattan benefited NJ, but agreed to a West Side Trade Center for a couple reasons, and that's when the original WTC began to take shape.


Source.

More on the way...
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