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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In a previous post, as I recalled, it was suggested (in rather less polite terms) that NYC was beating Chicago in terms of the design quality of new residential construction.

I'm not so sure this is true, and this view does not simply stem from Chicago boosterism or a desire to bash NYC. I just came back from a short visit to NYC, and nothing in this nation beats 100+ blocks of vibrant urbanism that is Broadway. But consider..

Some of the new highrises in NYC designed by extremely famous architects such as Richard A.M. Stern and Robert Meier are good, but by no means great showstopping buildings. I don't have much doubt that Ralph Johnson's Skybridge and Contemporaine (and Destefano's Erie on the Park) best Robert Meier's recent residential contribution in the Village or elsewhere in NYC.

Stern's tower in the upper east side is good but not great. Michael Graves tower in Midtown is another story -- I think its a great example of post-modernism and does best Chicago's 800 North Michigan.

And Trump's recent NYC additions are nothing special relative to Trump's contribution in Chicago. The 70-story black glass box near the UN is just that -- a big black box. And the Trump Place development on the West Side is decent, but nothing special. None of this, in my opinion, comes close to Trump Tower Chicago.

There is a fair amount of mediocre residential going up in NYC, as in Chicago. The mediocre arguably leaves a bigger mark on Chicago because some of it is so gargatuan and is not well blended into dozens of older construction as in NYC. (i.e., some of the new River North towers simply dominate that area.)

In general, I think Chicago is competing with NYC in quality due to the construction of the usual suspects: One Museum Park, 340 on the Park, 65 East Huron. There are few if any new modernist residential towers on par with the Bristol.
 

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Aesthetics are subjective, but there is no question there are more globally renowned architects building residential towers in NY. The list includes Frank Gehry, Norman Foster, Rem Koohaas, Zaha Hadid, Santiago Calatrava, Charles Gwathmey, Winka Dubbeldam, Enrique Norton, Herzog & De Meuron, Cesar Pelli, Richard Meier, Jean Nouvel, Christian de Portzamparc and Richard Rogers.

I'm not sure what you're implying when you mention Trump. Trump doesn't hire innovative architects for any of his properties.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Crawford: I believe you are missing the point I'm trying to make. I was saying that *despite* the fact that NYC has more world-recognized star architects designing residential than Chicago, Chicago is nonetheless holding its own. Simply because something was designed by someone world-famous doesn't mean its a great building, or that it is better than buildings designed by lesser-known architects. Its often but not always true. I'm not terribly impressed with Meier's residential buildings in NYC. R. Johnson's towers in Chi knock them out of the water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Crawford -- the implication of your point about Trump is that since he doesn't hire innovative architects, his buildings should be written off. Nothing that is 70+ stories tall will be written off. The fact is that Trump's Chicago contribution looks to be far superior to anything he has done in NYC.
 

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In my opinion, New York highrises are kicking our highrises' collective ass. Yeah, we have some decent and better-than-decent ones, but New York is building some iconic structures--think 80 South Street.

What I'd be interested in knowing is the quality of each city's midrise and lowrise new construction.
 
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