The Municipal Art Society of New York and the Committee for Environmentally Sound Development are pleased to announce our first victory in our legal challenge to the 200 Amsterdam Avenue development. May 14, 2018 Read more.
The city's highest-end condominium towers have been blamed for casting shadows over Central Park, exacerbating the affordability crisis and helping foreigners hide dirty money. Now, add hastening climate change to the list. May 14, 2018 Read more.
Party Girl once went by a different name. The 205-foot, eight-cabin yacht once belonged to Askar Alshinbayev, a Kazakh energy and banking tycoon who sold it in 2016. Alshinbayev, according to yacht enthusiast website SuperYachtFan, had given the vessel a less provocative moniker: Meridian. April 13, 2018 Read more.
One of the more interesting new designs coming to Manhattan will be at 50 West 66th Street, where Extell will soon be adding yet another punctuation mark to the city’s skyline. The site is just six blocks away from Columbus Circle, and down the block from Central Park. The building was last on our radar in late 2017, with the news that the project would dramatically increase in size to become the tallest tower on the Upper West Side, taking away the title from 200 Amsterdam Avenue before it could even begin rising. Now, demolition has officially begun on the assemblage’s last structural occupant, while excavation continues apace across the land that has already been cleared. March 16, 2018 Read more.
The phenomenon of supertall buildings has spread from the 57th Street corridor to the Upper West Side and Upper East Side. Two supertall buildings -– at 200 Amsterdam Avenue and at 50 West 66th Street-- are in progress in the CB7 board district. These buildings, as designed, and similar buildings that have sprung up within the past several years or are now under construction, are jarringly out of context, block light and air, cast shadows (including into Central Park), consume energy out of proportion to any reasonable need of residents, and may create wind tunnel effects. Vote: 31 to 1 March 6, 2018 Read more.
Community Board 7, which covers the Upper West Side, is joining the chorus of voices speaking out against a recent influx of tall buildings in the neighborhood. Members discussed the issue at a full-board meeting last week. March 10, 2018 Read more.
Upper West Side residents have been mobilizing to fight large apartment towers that have been sprouting up in the neighborhood, and last week they got an education in how developers are managing to build them. March 2, 2018 Read more.
The de Blasio administration is taking aim at developers’ practice of stacking luxury condos atop multistory hollow spaces to achieve greater heights and more lucrative sales. February 7, 2018 Read more.
In 1962, nine of the world’s tallest buildings were south of 59th Street in Manhattan–and things hadn’t changed much by 1981 when five of the tallest towers were concentrated on the same tiny island, which, with Chicago’s three, gave the U.S. nine of the world’s top 10 tallest skyscrapers. If you added Toronto’s entry that made 10. Today, the only U.S. entry the top ten is lower Manhattan’s One World Trade Center. This same tiny island though, is still number two in the world when it comes to concentration of tall towers. February 1, 2018 Read more.
Whether an East Harlem ballpark will give way to what could be the tallest building between Midtown Manhattan and Boston may hinge upon the definition of a park versus a playground. January 1, 2018 Read more.
Despite some initial construction hiccups, plans for the 668-foot residential tower at 200 Amsterdam Avenue continue to move forward. According to YIMBY, the tower’s developers, SJP Properties and Mitsui Fudosan, have unveiled new renderings of the Upper West Side building, including an up-close shot of its crown. Designed by Elkus Manfredi, the exteriors feature an aluminum curtainwall and metal panels. New York firm CetraRuddy will take on the interiors of the 112-unit condominium building. December 19, 2017 Read more.
Michael Hiller is a zoning and land-use attorney who has represented community groups in seemingly impossible quests for about 20 years. His high-profile cases have often been against the Landmarks Preservation Commission, notably Tribeca’s iconic Clock Tower Building and new construction along historic Gansevoort Street, both of which are pending appeal by the defendants. December 13, 2017 Read more.
Architecture firm Snøhetta revealed last month their design for a 775-foot condominium tower at 50 West 66th Street, slated to be the tallest building on the Upper West Side. Developed by Extell, the condo will rise 69 stories and contain 127 units, featuring series of “sculptural excavations” that are “evocative of the chiseled stone of Manhattan’s geologic legacy,” according to the architects. As the New York Times reported, critics of the project from the UWS community say the tower would violate zoning restrictions in the area. Local advocate groups, joined by Council Member Helen Rosenthal and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, are pushing back against the construction of Extell’s ultra-luxury tower. In a statement, Rosenthal said, “We will fight this project with every tool at our disposal.” December 11, 2017 Read more.
Extell’s plan to bring a 775-foot condo tower to West 66th Street just off of Central Park has given rise to the Upper West Side’s latest development battle. Though the community and elected officials contend that the tower shirks zoning laws in the area, Extell continues to assert that their assemblage can in fact legally give way to the tower. December 11, 2017 Read more.
In a city seemingly exhausted by a long-running construction boom, the number of pitched battles over new developments appears to be growing. December 8, 2017 Read more.
The 1,550-foot Central Park Tower, the soon-to-be tallest residential tower in New York City, has gotten some new renderings that reveal how it’ll appear lit up at night, as well as how its interiors may look (h/t YIMBY). Extell Development’s current plans for the Billionaires’ Row tower call for 179 condominiums, spanning on average 5,000 square feet, with open layouts and oversized windows overlooking Central Park. With the construction of the supertall at 217 West 57th Street now hitting its halfway mark and rising to roughly 700 feet, Central Park Tower is expected to be completed in 2019. December 7, 2017 Read more.
Two Manhattan politicians are preparing a formal application that would block the development of a trio of residential towers on the Lower East Side now that a bill hastening the submission process has lapsed into law. December 5, 2017 Read more.
A newly released rendering (left) shows plans for a 775-foot tower on West 66th Street. Extell Development previously secured approvals for a more modest 25-story building at the site (right) before changing course, prompting Council Member Helen Rosenthal to call the move a “procedural bait-and-switch." December 5, 2017 Read more.
0n Nov. 27 Extell Development Co., one of the city's more prolific developers, unveiled plans for what would be the tallest tower on the Upper West Side: a 775-foot residential spire on West 66th Street between Columbus Avenue and Central Park West. December 4, 2017 Read more.
Yet another planned New York City skyscraper is coming under increased scrutiny from local residents for using certain building tactics to bolster its height, Crain’s reports. This particular tower is slated to rise at 249 East 62nd Street, and it will stand 32-stories if the developer behind the project, Real Estate Inverlad, has its way. December 1, 2017 Read more.
The City Council on Thursday approved the rezoning of East Harlem, the third neighborhood to be rezoned under the mandatory inclusionary housing program. November 30, 2017 Read more.
The Upper West Side's city council representative has vowed to fight a development that would become the neighborhood's tallest building. November 29, 2017 Read more.
Council Member Helen Rosenthal is calling on developer Extell to halt its newly revealed plans to build a 775-foot, ultra-luxury tower at 50 West 66th Street. These new plans have come to light a year after foundation excavation permits were issued for a 25-story (250-foot) building on the site. The building’s new height is over three times what the developer reported to Council Member Rosenthal, community members, and the City’s Department of Buildings, in Spring 2016. November 29, 2017 Read more.
In June, City Councilmember Helen Rosenthal, State Senator Brad Hoylman and State Assemblyman Richard Gottfried issued a missive to Extell Development, declaring they knew something wasn’t right with the 25-story building the company had filed plans for at 36-40 West 66th Street. November 27, 2017 Read more.
There are more than two dozen supertall towers either completed or in the works in New York City right now, with more to come in the next few years—and that’s not taking into account all of the tall buildings that don’t quite meet the 984-foot threshold. October 17, 2017 Read more.
6sqft has reported previously on the increasing alarm caused by New York City’s future skyline and its growing army of skyscrapers-to-be, with community groups expressing deep concern about the shadows cast across the city’s parks by the tall towers. The Municipal Art Society (MAS) has been leading the pack when it comes to thorough analysis of the issue, which they see as having its roots not only in the sheer height of the new buildings but in a lack of regulation of how and where they rise in the larger context of the city. October 17, 2017 Read more.
Since the release of its Accidental Skyline report in 2013, The Municipal Art Society of New York (MAS) has been raising the alarm about the need for new rules and regulations to protect public assets like light, air, open space, and the character of the City’s neighborhoods from supertall towers and out-of-scale development. Read more.
Developers of a 668-foot tall apartment tower on 69th Street and Amsterdam Avenue that was delayed by a zoning challenge have begun construction after receiving permits from the Department of Buildings. Permits were granted on September 27, the day after the department lifted a hold on the project following a zoning challenge filed by neighborhood groups. October 12, 2017 Read more.
Central Park’s most dazzling and vibrant season has arrived. With over 20,000 trees and 150 species of trees spread across 843-acres, Central Park in autumn remains a cannot-miss spectacle for New Yorkers. Thankfully, the Central Park Conservancy created a fall foliage map making it easy to find the leaves with the brightest shades of gold, yellow, red and orange this season. October 5, 2017 Read more.
Extell Development and Megalith Capital brought in Hong Kong-based private equity firm Meridian Capital Limited as a partner at their Lincoln Square condo project 36-44 West 66th Street. September 28, 2017 Read more.
The city Department of Buildings lifted a hold on a controversial tower at 200 Amsterdam Avenue at 69th Street, making it more likely the project will move ahead. If building permits are granted, it will be the tallest building on the Upper West Side. September 27, 2017 Read more.
The Department of Buildings has given developers the green light to proceed with construction at 200 Amsterdam Avenue, where the Upper West Side’s tallest tower is taking shape. September 27, 2017 Read more.
Plans for a 668-foot-tall luxury development at 200 Amsterdam Ave. can now move forward as the Department of Buildings lifted its stop-work order on the project on Tuesday. September 27, 2017 Read more.
The Department of Buildings gave developers on Tuesday the go-ahead to construct a 668-foot residential tower on the Upper West Side. In a partnership between SJP Properties and Mitsui Fudosan America, the project at 200 Amsterdam Avenue will be the neighborhood’s tallest tower, surpassing the current title-holder, Trump International, by more than 80 feet. September 27, 2017 Read more.
A new rendering of Central Park Tower, slated to be the tallest residential tower on Earth, shows the most sparkling image of the residential building yet. Construction for Extell Development’s supertall, located at 225 West 57th Street on Billionaires’ Row, is underway and when completed, the tower is projected to be 1,550-feet tall. As CityRealty reported, the all-glass rendering appears to be taken about 900-feet above Central Park and leaves out rivaling towers, 432 Park Avenue and 111 West 57th Street. The $2.98 billion project is expected to be completed in 2019. August 15, 2017 Read more.
A City Council committee green-lights the type of apartment tower that development opponents have blocked elsewhere in the city. August 10, 2017 Read more.
On Monday night, the five candidates for City Council from District 6 participated in a public forum at Fordham University to discuss the most pressing issues facing the Upper West Side, among them: affordable housing; empty storefronts; over-development and super-tall buildings; the expansion of the American Museum of Natural History; safeguarding seniors; and school overcrowding and segregation. August 2, 2017 Read more.
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York may know something about divine intervention. But to get to Mayor Bill de Blasio on a real estate negotiation potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars, it hired lobbyists. July 27, 2017 Read more.
A century ago, New York City enacted the first zoning resolution to control the size and density of development. Today, the de Blasio administration is poised to toss aside our zoning rules to foster construction of massive new towers in East Midtown, particularly around Grand Central Terminal. July 24, 2017 Read more.
The engineers for Chicago's future third-tallest skyscraper had issued a warning: Wind tunnel tests showed that the plan for the building, three thin, interconnected high-rises designed by star architect Jeanne Gang, had a flaw: High winds would push it around, making people inside feel like they were on a storm-tossed ship. July 24, 2017 Read more.
A new bill introduced in New York City Council Thursday addresses the need for an urban agriculture plan that doesn’t fall through the cracks of the city’s zoning and building regulations, the Wall Street Journal reports. July 21, 2017 Read more.
How to use Trump Tower and other luxury high-rises to clean dirty money, run an international crime syndicate, and propel a failed real estate developer into the White House. July 13, 2017 Read more.
Officials closed down a block of West 58th Street on Wednesday after a ramp fell from Extell Development’s Central Park Tower’s TRData LogoTINY construction site. July 12, 2017 Read more.
Over in the lofty environs of that exclusive upscale Manhattan neighborhood known as Sutton Place, the race is on. July 11, 2017 Read more.
When you think of the New York City skyline, it’s likely that the city’s iconic Midtown skyscrapers—the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, and their ilk—come to mind, along with some of the new-guard towers like 432 Park Avenue and One57. But it’s the latter that have, in recent years, ticked off preservation-minded New Yorkers. July 5, 2017 Read more.
Extell Development Co. spent 15 years assembling a development site on West 57th Street. But when construction began in 2010 on a 1,005 foot tall condominium tower, now known as One57, preservationists were caught by surprise. July 5, 2017 Read more.
First came the scaffolding, another latticelike structure blocking a sidewalk in front of a Manhattan building. And just in case the tenants in five buildings near 57th Street and Fifth Avenue did not get the message, demolition work started on a sixth, adjoining building. July 4, 2017 Read more.
From the concrete canyons of Midtown to verdant outcroppings deep in Central Park and everything in between, NYC unfolds in a suitably epic series of moments in this live-action love letter created by Wasatch aerial drone photography specialists. A drone camera sails above it all on metal wings, capturing the city, its architecture and its creatures large and small at rest, work and play. July 2, 2017 Read more.
The super-tall building planned for 200 Amsterdam Avenue is officially “on hold,” according to the NYC Department of Buildings website. On Friday, June 23rd, the words “Audit: Notice to Revoke” also appeared on the site, referring to the zoning permit that would allow the building to rise 668’, making it the tallest building north of midtown and on the Upper West Side. June 28, 2017 Read more.
The Department of Buildings has posted on its website a “Notice to Revoke” permits for the 668′ tower at 200 Amsterdam! June 27, 2017 Read more.
New Yorkers from neighborhoods across the city came together on Thursday, June 22, 2017, for a Save New York Summit to discuss City policies that have enabled and incentivized the trend of supertall development, now threatening traditional residential neighborhoods like the Upper West Side. June 23, 2017 Read more.
Sometimes a view is just a view. And sometimes — when you’re standing on the 92nd floor of a controversial New York skyscraper with Rafael Viñoly — it’s a window onto the architectural arms race that is rapidly reshaping the Manhattan skyline. June 15, 2017 Read more.
There will be no further permits issued for the controversial building being planned for 200 Amsterdam Avenue until the legal challenge to its zoning lot is resolved. What would be the tallest building on the Upper West Side — an expected 668 feet — is now on hold. June 10, 2017 Read more.
Locals' bid for a zoning change to block super-tall skyscrapers in Sutton Place is undergoing formal public review after a year-and-a-half of planning — but city officials are concerned it could discourage affordable housing in the area. June 7, 2017 Read more.
On May 13, 2017, nearly 50 attendees joined FRIENDS as we hosted a community workshop supported, in part, by the National TrusGary Barnett is buying another Gristedes site, and this one also won’t likely stay standing for long. May 31, 2017 Read more.
Yesterday afternoon, MAS President Elizabeth Goldstein joined City Council Members Ben Kallos and Donovan Richards, and Council colleagues as Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law a series of reforms to the Board of Standards and Appeals zoning variance process. May 31, 2017 Read more.
On May 13, 2017, nearly 50 attendees joined FRIENDS as we hosted a community workshop supported, in part, by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The workshop covered the basics of zoning and preservation in New York City, with a focus on the Upper East Side, as well as our recommendations for zoning changes. May 22, 2017 Read more.
New Yorkers have to elbow their way onto packed subways below ground. They have to eke out room on teeming sidewalks and streets just to get anywhere. And in a city where no space can be taken for granted, increasingly they have to fight for the very light and air above their heads. May 22, 2017 Read more.
We know parks make us healthier and happier, but how does Central Park contribute to the wellbeing of New York City’s people, plants, and wildlife? April 25, 2017 Read more.
WHEN A NEW building emerges from the regulatory dance that weighs economic growth against loss of open space or increased density, the physical landscape of our city changes forever. Amid pressures facing each generation to grow our tax base and our constricted housing stock, the protection of open space for future residents rests on government’s willingness to take stewardship of public lands seriously and to consider more than short-term financial gain. April 24, 2017 Read more.
A new CBS News poll shows a majority of Americans have a pessimistic view about prospects for the environment, with 57 percent believing it will be worse for the next generation. Only 12 percent believe the environment will be better than it is today. April 24, 2017 Read more.
City zoning restrictions make it extremely difficult to build high-rise apartment towers on the Upper West Side. But with some land-use acrobatics, it can be done. April 11, 2017 Read more.
Are you sick and tired of Big Real Estate getting huge tax breaks at the expense of the public? Here’s something quick and easy you can do about it. April 7, 2017 Read more.
Imagine scoring more than $1 billion in financing but still being miles from the finish line. That’s where Gary Barnett finds himself today, but the chief of Extell Development TRData LogoTINY has fought this fight before and prevailed. March 24, 2017 Read more.
The tallest building in the world? Been there, done that. But what about constructing the longest building? That's a feat one architectural firm hopes to achieve via the "Big Bend," a new kind of skyscraper that shatters the mold of buildings past by opting to bend a structure into a U shape. March 24, 2017 Read more.
A majority of the Manhattan Borough Board – composed of the borough president, its city councilmembers, and community board chairs – approved the Department of City Planning’s Midtown East rezoning plan on March 16, but noted the action comes while the plan is still in the middle of an evolving review process. March 17, 2017 Read more.
Despite the bitter wind, Kim Wasserman showed me around La Villita Park. Occupying 21 acres in the middle of this city’s largest Mexican-American neighborhood, called Little Village, the park used to be a brownfield and illegal dump. March 12, 2017 Read more.
Though Extell is best known for sky-high mega-developments like One57, the Central Park Tower, and One Manhattan Square, they’ve also been taking on some slightly smaller residential projects, gobbling up swaths of real estate in the upper Midtown area. Their latest venture is a partnership with Megalith Capital Management to build a new condo tower near Central Park West. Feb. 1, 2017 Read more.
TYou’re looking at a map of all of the shadows produced by thousands of buildings in New York City over the course of one day. This inverted view tells the story of the city’s skyline at the ground level. December 21, 2016 Read more.
Millennium Tower is a luxury residential high-rise that has sunk 17 inches and tilted 14 inches since it was completed in 2008. Though an inspection by the city showed it's safe to occupy, the situation has sparked an exodus from the building. Residents say they're selling multimillion-dollar condos at a loss, with the value of their homes tumbling $320,000 on average. September 8, 2016 Read more.
Today's heat wave conditions might have you seeking shade, but gather ye UV rays while ye may because soon our city will be a shadowy thicket of sad beneath a forest of super-tall luxury condos. Specifically, the southern edge of Central Park will be heavily shadowed throughout much of the day by a pack of under-construction skyscrapers coming to midtown. July 27, 2016 Read more.
Real estate is an established method of money laundering internationally; the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has recognized that the real estate sector is a high-risk sector for money laundering, and it frequently attracts criminals who want to launder their dirty money. So why it is easier to launder money through real estate than the banks? Feb. 17, 2016 Read more.
NEW YORKERS, and particularly Manhattanites, are wringing their hands about the two dozen or so supertall luxury towers sprouting along the southern edge of Central Park. The builders are charging up to $100 million for apartments that offer helicopter views of lush foliage, jagged skylines, soothing rivers and angelic clouds. They lure the superrich, many with suspect foreign assets, to sky-high mansions. They enrich themselves by exploiting weak zoning rules to pour hideous implants into Manhattan cavities. December 30, 2015 Read more.
The New York City skyline is growing at a pace not seen since the postwar boom. As recently as 2013, only five towers in New York City topped 1,000 feet. Now, there are that many “supertall” towers in the works on 57th Street alone, and roughly two dozen either under construction or on the drawing boards across Manhattan. Dec. 21, 2015 Read more.
The New York City Council is considering creating a task force to address the impacts of shadows from megatowers over Central Park. November 12, 2015 Read more.
New Yorkers are speaking out against a rash of super-tall skinny skyscrapers by architects including SHoP and Robert AM Stern, which they say will overshadow Central Park. November 11, 2015 Read more.
Though it shares concerns about shadows, the Department of City Planning says slender new skyscrapers preserve older buildings and enhance the skyline. Aug. 19, 2015 Read more.
Lawmakers call for more regulation and a close look at height limits in a big portion of midtown Manhattan. July 28, 2015 Read more.
In contrast to the 13-year controversy that surrounded the construction of the new World Trade Center – the tallest building in New York, the United States and indeed the western hemisphere – another skyscraper nearly as high has lately sprung up almost unnoticed. May 12, 2015 Read more.
Emily Badger looks at the shadow impact in New York, Boston, San Francisco, and Washington D.C May 4, 2015 Read more.
New, super tall towers along West 57th Street and Central Park South are casting the park below 72nd Street into deeper shadow. If you don’t like this, who do you blame? May 3, 2015 Read more.
About a year after a crowded, heated meeting on the same topic, the public has spoken once again on the subject of the many tall towers destined to loom large over Central Park. April 29, 2015 Read more.
A lack of height limits has allowed developers to build thin buildings competing for the top of the skyline, rankling some who say shadows infringe on the park. Is it worth some passing shade for an ever-changing city? May 12, 2014 Read more.
Skyscrapers are a hallmark of large cities. Modern engineering makes it possible to erect something as tall as the Empire State Building on a very small footprint. April 23, 2014 Read more.
Ever taller, ever thinner, the new condo towers racing skyward in Midtown Manhattan are breaking records for everything, including price. Sold for $95 million, the 96th floor of 432 Park Avenue will be the highest residence in the Western world. As shadows creep across Central Park, Paul Goldberger looks at the construction, architecture, and marketing of these super-luxury aeries, gauging their effect on the city’s future. April 9, 2014 Read more.
With over 425 people crowding into the New York Public Library on 42nd Street, it was clear that the local community board had touched a nerve as the host of a forum called “Central Park Supertowers.” At least a half-dozen elected officials also showed up. It was an unusually large showing for a community board event. Feb. 20, 2014 Read more.
The shadows that the so-called many "Central Park supertowers"-to-be will cast onto the city's venerated green lung have stirred up a debate about height limits for buildings. It's a heated topic, so naturally hundreds of people packed a hall at the 42nd Street library last night to hear arguments about what to make of the shadowsand what to do in light of them. February 20, 2014 Read more.
It was thirty-seven minutes into a widely publicized, heavily attended forum on “supertowers” and the shadows they cast on Central Park that the antagonist of the hour got his say. Feb. 20, 2014 Read more.
Michael Kimmelman urges public oversight of new ultra-tall towers. Dec. 22, 2013 Read more.
With supertall towers popping up along Central Park's southern edge like wildly expensive luxury mushrooms, Manhattan's largest park is about to be cast into shadow—some as long as half a mile. The real estate boom is stirring up a debate: Do we have a "right to light"? Oct. 31, 2013 Read more.
Warren St. John’s opinion on “Shadows Over Central Park.” Oct. 28, 2013 Read more.
Too often, New Yorkers are caught off guard by new development in their neighborhoods. The Accidental Skyline offers tools to help demystify the city planning process and bring the public into the conversation. Read more.
Frederick Law Olmsted, the granddaddy of American landscape architecture, had little idea how prescient he was when he told the City of New York in 1872 that the midtown Manhattan park he was busy creating would serve as the “lungs of the city.” December, 2001 Read more.
More than 800 people formed a line through Central Park yesterday, opening black umbrellas on cue in a symbolic protest of the shadows that would be cast at certain times in the winter by the huge office towers planned on Columbus Circle. Oct. 19, 1987 Read more.
Plans for office towers on the western arc of Columbus Circle seemed certain to be scaled back yesterday as the developer, Mortimer B. Zuckerman, said he would reduce the bulk of the buildings to resolve lawsuits against the project. Oct. 14, 1987 Read more.