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Tall-building plans and completions join other industry news from the busy Big Apple.

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Midtown’s 111 West 57th Street, designed by SHoP Architects

Chase’s New Headquarters to Rise in Midtown East

JPMorgan Chase plans to replace its 52-story world headquarters with a new, 70-story building on the same site between 47th and 48th streets at 270 Park Avenue in Midtown East, various news outlets, including The New York Times, reported in February. It will be the first tower to rise under new zoning rules aimed at sparking development of modern skyscrapers in the densely populated business district surrounding Grand Central Terminal. Mayor Bill de Blasio, who championed the rezoning, applauded the announcement, part of bringing “good jobs, modern buildings and concrete improvements” to the neighborhood. The bank’s 15,000 area employees will be relocated to the new building, which is expected to result in more than US$40 million in improvements to public streets, sidewalks and parks. Demolition of the current 1961 building, which will be the largest purposely demolished building in world history, is expected to commence in early 2019, with the new headquarters complete approximately five years later.

15 Hudson Yards Tops Out, Readies for Occupancy

Related Cos. and Oxford Properties Group’s 15 Hudson Yards (ELEVATOR WORLD, November 2016) topped out at 88 stories and 910 ft. in February, on track for residents to move in by the end of the year, New York YIMBY reported. As it nears completion, its design by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, is becoming clearer, with the distinctive cloverleaf crown’s indentations visible from the ground. The building is 15 ft. taller than 10 Hudson Yards, the first major building in the far West Side Hudson Yards mixed-use development. Including event venue the Culture Shed, 15 Hudson Yards will have 285 condominiums and approximately 100 “affordable” housing units.

World’s Skinniest Skyscraper Passes Halfway Point

The city’s future third-tallest and the world’s future skinniest building, 111 West 57th Street, reached a milestone in March when construction passed the halfway point of an eventual 1,428 ft. or 82 stories, New York YIMBY reported. EW has written about the building, as it will be notable for its 24:1 slenderness ratio — leaving room for only one residence per floor — and distinct design by SHoP Architects featuring a terracotta, bronze and glass façade. Incorporating the historic Steinway Building, 111 West 57th Street will have 60 condominiums starting at more than US$15.5 million. JDS Development and Property Management Group are behind the project, which, at the current rate of construction, could be finished in 2020.

Striking Lower East Side Addition Eyes Completion

A striking addition to the Lower East Side, One Manhattan Square at 252 South Street, is eyeing a 2019 completion with, in March, only 12 floors of cladding to go before its exterior is finished, New York YIMBY reported. The 80-story, 850-ft.-tall residential building will be the neighborhood’s “first legitimate” skyscraper, the source said. It will contain 815 condominiums and be one of the largest such projects in the city. Included in the Extell development will be an adjacent 13-story building that will house more than 200 “permanently affordable” rental apartments. Adamson Associates handled the design, which features sky-blue and black curtain walls with tilted glass panels that reflect the sky.

Midtown Skyscraper at Central Park Nearly Complete

Just shy of supertall status at 950 ft., the 70-story 220 Central Park South in Midtown is nearly complete, with New York YIMBY reporting in March its limestone cladding was almost entirely in place. While neighbors such as Central Park Tower will loom over it (by 600 ft.), the Robert A.M. Stern-designed building still has a lot to offer. It will contain 116 condominiums, ground-level retail and an impressive list of amenities, including a fitness center, a library, meeting rooms and a second-floor terrace. An extension opens onto Central Park South, and a 14-story annex will include 13 large residences expected to fetch a hefty fee. Vornado Realty Trust is the developer, and SLCE is the architect of record. Completion is anticipated this year.

MTA Elevator Availability, Accessibility Scrutinized

The federal government has joined a 2016 lawsuit that alleges the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) was in violation of federal law when it did not include an elevator in major renovations at a Bronx subway station, the Queens Chronicle reported. In a complaint made public March 13, the office of the U.S. Attorney for New York’s Southern District is asking that the court find the MTA violated the 1990 federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and that it “enter into an injunction requiring the defendants to install elevators at the Middletown Road station.”

The original complaint was filed by disability advocacy group Bronx Independent Living Services and stemmed from the renovations undertaken between October 2013 and May 2014. The source said the U.S. Attorney’s office declined to comment on the lawsuit’s potential impact on other subway renovation projects, but an MTA spokesman said the agency has an ongoing program of ADA-related improvements. Of MTA’s 472 subway stations, only 118 are handicapped accessible, but funding has been approved for upgrades at 25 more.

AM New York reported MTA’s 249 elevators are available 95.6% of the time. The score means the MTA is “comfortable with having its elevators out of service two weeks in a year,” the source said, pointing to cities like Boston, where transit-system elevator availability improved from 90% to nearly 100% through a mix of contractors and elevator support staff.

MTA has set an elevator availability goal of 96.5% and reports it is actively addressing factors such as recruiting and retaining staff. At the end of 2017, MTA had 397 elevator and escalator maintenance staff, approximately 21% fewer than what was budgeted. MTA said it has been working with the union on higher wages and better benefits and hired 30 new maintenance workers since negotiations ended at the end of 2017.

thyssenkrupp Equipment at NYC, San Francisco Airports

thyssenkrupp elevators, escalators and iwalk moving walks are facilitating passenger flow at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York City (NYC) and San Francisco International Airport (SFO). At JFK, four iwalks have been installed at Terminal 4, Concourse B, serving Delta Airlines passengers. At SFO, there will be 33 elevators, 20 escalators and four moving walks, all meeting Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold standards. Health product declarations outlining all materials utilized in each product were also required. The SFO work is part of a US$2.4-billion renovation of Terminal 1, Boarding Area B, scheduled for completion in 2022.

Tallest, Most Expensive Project in Years in Minneapolis

New York City architecture firm Robert A.M. Stern has designed the Eleven, a 39-story condominium tower for the downtown Minneapolis riverfront for developers the Ryan Cos. and Luigi Bernardi, the Star Tribune reported. Coming online in a time of high demand and low supply, the building will be the tallest and most expensive to take shape in the city in a decade. Stern partner Paul Whalen drew inspiration from nearby historic structures for a design that features a slender tower atop a multistory podium housing parking, offices and guest suites. The Eleven is set to include approximately 100 units. Response from the community has been positive.

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