NEW 10-STORY CONDO PLANNED TO BE BUILT ON TOP OF CURRENT WEST END AVENUE BUILDING

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Developer Kaled Management filed plans to build a new 10-story building on top of a six-story building at 95th street and West End Avenue. The new building, which will have an entrance on 95th street, will go on top of 711 West End Avenue, a rental building that was built in the 1950’s.

“The 124,600-square-foot property would hold 65 condominium units and be constructed on top of the existing six-story rental property on the site,” the Real Deal reported.

The site is currently located outside of the Riverside-West End Avenue historic district, but is part of a section that is expected to be considered soon. (Two sections of the historic district have been approved but the third section has not yet gone before the Landmarks Preservation Commission.) Council member Helen Rosenthal has asked LPC Commissioner Meenakshi Srinivasan to expedite the hearings given the new filing at 711 West End: “we simply cannot wait.” We’ve posted the letter below.

CM Rosenthal Letter Re 711 WEA

NEWS, REAL ESTATE | 33 comments | permalink
    1. Paul RL says:

      So now the purpose of the Riverside-West End Historic District stop develop entirely? This building was built in the ’50s, and is anything but “historic”. Please politicians, stop paralyzing our neighborhood and allow it to evolve and improve already!

      • Eric says:

        We live in a city, not a museum.
        I gotta say it again … CHANGE is the ESSENTIAL nature of cities. Urban environments do not, by definition, remain static. This is what makes them exciting for us to live in … the inevitability that something new will emerge in our environment.
        Once upon a time West End Avenue was farmland and no doubt many who cherished that as a welcome haven from the hustle and bustle of downtown were HORRIFIED at the thought of those awful landlords with their high-rise apartments ruining it with all that traffic, noise, and what one day would be those obscenely high $75/month rents.

        Everything someone comes to love about their neighborhood was new and shocking once. We cannot and should not try to freeze the world so it stays the way we like it.

      • Gretchen says:

        Couldn’t have said it better myself. Helen Rosenthal is a died-in-the-wool NIMBY, wrapped in her poor doors and 50’s “historic” landmarks. Doesn’t she have better things to do in our district with her tax-payer paid time?

    2. webot says:

      this is a nondescript 1950s building.

      ten stories? okay with me – provided it is quality architecture, perhaps contextual with the pre-war of the Avenue.

      Rosenthal writes a letter to LPC against this, while three 19th century townhouses on 96th street face the wreckers ball?

      so its not really about landmarking deserving buildings for Helen, its about kowtowing to the renters who don’t want the inconvenience and mess involved in creating more housing for new yorkers who want to actually invest in the neighborhood.

      Got it.

      • Pedestrian says:

        So you want good quality and you want it to be contextual and how do you think that happens without some government oversight and some community involvement throughout public hearings afforded via the LOC process. The LPC process needs to be strengthened not destroyed.

        Support a revitalized LPC that protects our neighborhoods and our historic properties.

    3. Harriet says:

      Agree completely with 2 comments above. And, don’t forget that the 16 story buildings built 19010-1930 that we now “cherish as historically significant” replaced 4 story private homes, which were significant in their time. I live on West End in the 70’s and was against the West End Historic District from Day One. Still think is was a huge mistake.

    4. Pedestrian says:

      The Chair of the LPC knew exactly what she was doing when she not so subtly told owners and developers that historic districts and landmark buildings and those pending for such designation don’t really matter because PROFIT is king! Keeping residents in the dark is the name of the game. Demeaning their concerns and insulting their intelligence and their interests is the theme of how the LPC moves forward.

      Think it can’t happen in your neighborhood or right next door. Think again you could be next!

    5. jsf says:

      We are so unbelievably fortunate to have Helen Rosenthal as our City Council Representative!. Adding ten stories to this non-descript bldg. will add nothing more than intensified overcrowding. This used to be a neighborhood, not just a luxury pass-through. Why a LPC? Think on it! Instead of objecting, put some of your energy into making this a better, safer, viable neighborhood. I’m pretty sure the current residents aren’t exactly in love with the proposal to add greater density to their bldg and the neighborhood.

      • Bruce Bernstein says:

        well said. this is just more pied-a-terres for the ultra rich. it adds no actual housing to the neighborhood.

        it’s interesting that some of the same people who wanted to evict the seniors from the Williams (diagonally across the street) to make way for luxury condos are now supporting this new development. i have a feeling they are real estate brokers or have some other interest in the continued disruption of the UWS.

      • Bruce Bernstein says:

        how can anyone in their right mind call this an “improvement”? in what way?

        • Thomas M. says:

          We should ban all new construction in all of NYC. In fact, in all of the USA. Malthusian Progressives are fed up with all these people crowding our Gaia.

    6. WEA Neighbor says:

      Eric, Paul, Gretchen, Webot, Harriet all have it right…Quality architecture is not legislated. It is created by talented architects that have done buildings that are both a part of the future of the City and sensitive to the past. PBDW Architects quoted in TRD are the very type of firm that can do that. As demonstrated by their 30 years of quality, thoughtful contextual design, they are up to the challenge/opportunity to transform a non-descript, marginally maintained building. This building does not contribute to WEA architecturally in any way. Sensitive scaled development (like adding 10 stories) that is consistent with WEA in height and bulk and seems to benefit the exiting tenants is good for the building and good for the neighborhood. Given the uses that deter value on 95th and 94th between WEA and Riverside, this is a welcome addition to our neighborhood and we should find a way to get beyond no development positions—if we are not growing we are dying.

    7. Anonymous says:

      What does it mean to “file a permit”? Does this mean the project has already been approved, or that an application is being considered? What would be the likely timeline for starting and completing the project?

    8. Nj says:

      Does anyone care that there is a school right across the street and the noise, dust and disruption will interfere?

      • denton says:

        No. A lot of lessons can be learned and taught.

      • Jeremy says:

        If people start to call for freezing development in the neighborhoods around schools, the easiest remedy is to stop building schools in attractive neighborhoods.

        • One must think about the unintended consequences of any legislative action. The city is an ecosystem that adjusts to the changes in the landscape. Change the zoning to prevent someone from constructing a large building on your side of the street, you may wind up with an even larger one on the other side.

          • Jeremy says:

            Yup. One would think that the folks on 95th Street who didn’t like European hotel guests would already be pretty attuned to that logic. Short memories up in here.

      • Cyrus says:

        Let me think about that for a minute.

        Um, Nope.

    9. IM says:

      YES. This could be a VERY welcome addition to the neighborhood. It’s always seemed like this stretch of Upper West Side was neglected by all but the homeless shelter operators–it’s nice to see people paying more attention to the potential of this area and willing to build it up… I wish Rosenthal would lay off people willing to invest money in our community and maybe focus on some of the issues that actually matter to residents here, like the fact that there was a daylight stabbing just across the street from where they want to put up this building…courtesy of the son of a homeless shelter resident on 95th street. Maybe stuff like that should be her priority?!?! Someone wants to build in this area and bring in more families? God bless em. And c’mon, the existing building isn’t a masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination. I agree with Webot. Let’s see what the architect has planned and then take it from there

    10. denton says:

      The real problem here is that I bet the condos will have their own separate entrance. Gasp.

    11. Lisa says:

      How exactly does one build ten stories on top of a pre-existing building?
      And while people are living there?

      I get – unhappily – that just about everyone is looking to reap riches from NYC real estate (not to mention transform the demographics in NYC)but building ten stories (not just one “penthouse”) on top of an pre-existing building seems like a massive, complicated and incredibly expensive venture.

      Couldn’t this building and its residents just be left alone…?

    12. karen says:

      I agree with JSF and Pedestrian and Bruce Bernstein. Every time I look out my window or walk up Broadway and see that hedious glass highrise looming above all the beautiful appropriate looking buildings for our neighborhood I become angry. I moved here because of the feel and look and relative quietude of our neighborhood. I fear that we will lose to greedy disrespectful developers. I hope WSR will keep us posted on hearing dates.

      • Wouldn’t you agree that civic minded community activist groups have caused more damage than any single developer in response to some perceived danger to the neighborhood? Aren’t things getting progressively worse every time there is some sort of new legislation being introduced to prevent normal activities? Many of the current big UWS issues we see discussed in this blog are caused by unnecessary meddling and the need to control. Writing legislation or changing the rules to win in a game is not the way things should be done. What happens when you need the old rule to win your point, are you going to change the game so that you can win again?

      • Jeremy says:

        Every time *I* look out my window, I’m pleased by all the light that the double-paned contiguous glass all the way around my living room lets in, and I appreciate the choices made by the developers of my hideous high-rise.

    13. Paul RL says:

      This proposed development is a wonderful thing, and we should be thankful that people are interested in investing in this neighborhood. I wish some of the negative folks on this blog would see the merits here.

      1) No existing buildings will be replaced, and no existing residents will be displaced.

      2) As a 10-story addition, it won’t be any taller than the other buildings in the area.

      3) For those of you fearing the architectural design, we have no info for anyone to assume anything at this point.

      4) This will add 65 condos, I would think mostly for families as I doubt anyone is buying pied-a-terres in the West ’90s. Now if you hate children, then I understand your anger. I happen to love them – my building is loaded with families and it has a great positive vibe.

      5) Bringing in new residents with any kind of buying power, be they families or single folks will be GREAT for the struggling independent businesses in the area.

      Cities and neighborhoods have always thrived on change and growth. And it’s unique opportunity to be able to change and grow WITHOUT tearing down or replacing something else. This is a no-brainer.

      • Bruce Bernstein says:

        without getting into arguing all the points… you’re wrong about people not buying Pied-a-terres in the W. 90s.

        i don’t think a lot of families are moving into the new fancy condo building on WEA East side of street, right before 96th: 732 WEA. One condo per floor. Astronomical prices.

        http://732wea.com/

      • WEA Neighbor says:

        Paul RL—-you are right on target and very well spoken. I wish the politicians could UNderstand the wisdom of your words…but alas we are often stuck with elected officials that are not interested in the leadership required to really support positive growth in our neighborhood.

    14. Riversidian says:

      This has got to be the first development NOT to displace any tenants – unusual and brilliant in my opinion…

      Let them build!

      Sincerely,

      Riversidian

    15. Jim says:

      Is it me, or do a lot of the comments in favor of this project feel like pants?

    16. Randy K says:

      I too live in a building that shouldn’t be landmarked. The LPC is preventing us from selling the building to a developer who will put up a more attractive building that will benefit the neighborhood. (Look at the beautiful new building at 86 & West End.)

      To put an end to the stripping of private property rights, I think that co-op boards must link up, pool their recourses and hire a lawyer with a background of dealing/fighting the LPC. How to get boards to link up is the big question.

    17. Richard says:

      I walk past this building several times a day and I have to say I think it is a great-looking Mid-Century building. Just because it’s not from the late 1800s doesn’t mean it is not historic. And to add a bit of NIMBYism, I don’t particularly care to experience the noise and traffic of construction that does not benefit the community at large.

    18. Anonymous says:

      Regardless of the merits of this 10 story addition nobody has mentioned the 2-3 year displacement that will result from this project for over 130 long-time neighborhood and building tenant customers that park in 711’s basement garage. Nearby garages are nearly full with monthly customers and we all know there is no additional street parking to be had on the UWS. Not only will these unfortunate garage customers face tremendous parking inconveniences but many will have no choice but to park on our already over congested UWS streets.