200 amsterdam

The new building planned for 200 Amsterdam Avenue at 69th street will soar 666 feet into the air, topping out at 51 stories.

But even if the height is technically equivalent to the number of the beast, the design is more like a stairway to heaven — at least for those who can afford it.

New York YIMBY got ahold of the rendering above. The exterior of the building will be designed by Boston architecture firm Elkus Manfredi, while CetraRuddy does the interior, according to YIMBY.

“The building’s 400,000 square feet and 51 floors will have 112 residences averaging over 3,000 square feet apiece…While the penthouse at 200 Amsterdam Avenue will top out 601 feet above the streets below, the building’s crown will enjoy a prominence that’s rare amongst skyscrapers in New York City.”

The San Remo is 400 feet high, according to YIMBY, while the new rental at 160 West 62nd street is 598 feet.

Demolition of the old synagogue on the site is already in full swing.

NEWS, REAL ESTATE | 97 comments | permalink
    1. PedestrianJustice says:

      666 feet? Paging Beelzebub, your UWS lair awaits…

    2. Marty says:


      • Lyri Clark says:

        Horrific ….I can’t imagine why this was allowed. I know we’ll never be Paris or London but it’s a shame we can’t hold on to some space and air on the UWS. The Village does. It makes you wonder….who stands to gain here? Not the neighboring buildings and residents….so exactly whose pockets got lined? Poor NYC, first Bloomberg gave Times Square to the tourists, then the nutty bicycle lady came along and again with Bloomberg took over our streets, and here we have the encroaching off-price outlets and huge high rise buildings on the UWS. Just plain sad to see.

    3. Sean says:

      Hello Gorgeous!

    4. Zeus says:

      Paging Bernie Sanders

    5. Cato says:

      Remember the Upper West Side? Wasn’t it a nice place to live?

      Now this. No doubt others like it to come.

      Welcome to the Upper East Side, West!

    6. Nathan says:

      It would look better if it were taller.

      • dannyboy says:

        From the YIMBY article: “a crown looks to be its defining feature, and definitely befits a skyscraper that will stand above all neighbors.”

        All bow down!

    7. Rob says:

      When the sun no longer shines on the UWS, let’s remember who was responsible for keeping us in the dark, especially during daylight hours. Maybe that’s why the people putting up these huge towers are probably “shady” themselves. We already know they’re greedy.

      • dannyboy says:

        …and those who livein them, hoping to have the Sun for themselves will not.

      • Ellen says:

        this is true, the eastern light will block a considerable amount of light into the Lincoln Towers buildings which are directly behind this new building.

    8. BBuoncristiano says:

      I gather this is the new Tower of Babel.
      Disgusting, taking down a synagogue for this monstrosity.

      • Gretchen says:

        Well in case you didn’t notice, the synagogue was relocated just down the block, and they made a sweet profit on the land sale. The new synagogue is yet another eyesore on this strip of ugly buildings.

    9. diane says:

      These buildings are not only offensive in their height, they are so damn boring!!!!!
      What is wrong with America’s architects? Could we have some damn creativity please????
      One square building after another is just one big YAWN.

      • Sean says:

        It may be a foreign architect.

        • dannyboy says:

          Elkus Manfredi,a Boston architectural firm, is designing the exteriors.

          Maybe the name sounds ‘foreign’ to you?

          • Jess says:

            Elkus Manfredi is based in Boston

            • Margaret says:

              Common tactic in Boston and many other places: you want to build a 30 story building? submit a proposal for 45 stories.

              When I look at this rendering, that’s all I can think of.

              Plus I can’t imagine trying to get construction lending for this project right now. Maybe I’m wrong, but I think a project like this will have tough going.

              And, it’s too damn tall. Should absolutely come with a requirement to fund city services for the new residents.

    10. Gioia says:

      Good grief, has this monstrosity passed all the city approval stages already??

    11. Chipper says:

      I think it looks nice…

      But how is there NOT room for a school on the first few floors of this building!

    12. Mike says:

      And exactly where does the Community Board and DOE expect those kids will go to school? (Hint: “Private” is not the answer).

      • Nathan says:

        If you can afford 3,000+ square feet in Manhattan you’re not sending your kids to public school. It’s likely that few of these will be primary residences anyway. And at 112 units this will have negligible impact on density (which is already much lower than it was in the ’60s).

        • Mike says:

          That’s what they said about the Trump buildings. Enough residents, when faced with the choice between sending kids to one of the most sought-after public schools in NYC or $40k+ for private schools, seemed to have a different thought, and that’s now a significant contributing factor to the irresponsible, year-over-year overcrowding PS199 has experienced.

    13. JS says:

      Really, does anyone care about seeing the light of day anymore??. This is a residential neighborhood.
      Really dissapointing!!

    14. Daryl says:

      truly an eyesore and no doubt the shadow will kill trees

    15. lucette says:

      What about the mayors stand on affordable housing How many units will be in this building?

    16. JR says:

      Hideous. Tasteless. Typical.

    17. ron shapley says:

      Unfortunately, fire department ladders don’t go that high. Think about it ~

    18. Paul RL says:

      Definitely more interesting than the boxier boxes that have plagued Lincoln Square as of late. To the developers, I say unto thee Bring It – but stop playing it safe already!

    19. Elizabeth says:

      I’m on 69th and Broadway and have a direct view of the former synagogue — I just realized that when that building is built I won’t be able to see any of the western sky–no more glimpses of sunsets, no more lovely twilight light. Grrrrrrrr……

      • dannyboy says:

        I feel that there should have been thorough study and approval of this project.

        • Nathan says:

          A study that would obviously support your pre-existing opinions? What if the study found that this is a perfectly acceptable project?

          • dannyboy says:

            Yes. A thorough study, with review, and signed-off approvals, and recommendations, and impacts on the neighborhood people. Yes, I agree!

      • Iiari says:

        Sunsets? Twilight? May I suggest you move almost everywhere else in the metro? You’re getting in the way of the city…

    20. Betsy says:

      #1) At this point, is it possible to pressure the developer into making space for a public school on the lower floors?

      #2) Regarding absentee tenants, by now, hasn’t the market for investment properties in Manhattan been saturated?

      • Nathan says:

        To point 2, it seems so. The ultra high end segment of the market is the weakest right now. But that’s good for the rest of us. If prices there fall it will allow a few slightly less rich people upgrade to these units, and then a few slightly less rich people take their old units, and so on down the line. It may be a drop in the ocean, but it’s not nothing.

        • dannyboy says:

          Hoping for some Trickle-Down? Good luck with that. There are 112 buyers at the tippy-top, ready with Cash.

          But you’re thinking that this will free up apartments for all.

      • m.pipik says:


        Have you actually looked at the site? It’s tiny. There is no way that a school could be put there. It’s too small a footprint and there are strict rules about which floors a school can be on. They relate to the safety of the students if they need to be evacuated.

    21. Now that is nice. It’s gonna make Lincoln Towers look even worse.

    22. John says:

      So much for our carbon footprint, will these rich folks also get a 25 year tax abatement for providing housing in the Bronx.

    23. Judy Kass says:


    24. Greg says:

      Breaking news from 1921

      GREEDY DEVELOPERS RUIN WEST SIDE Townhomes and Lawns Make Way for Luxury Highrises

      New technology to allow unprecedented 15 story buildings with indoor plumbing

      Homeowners on cross streets from 72nd to 125th Streets say “Enough!” as back gardens now in shadows. Others wonder if the neighborhood can retain its country charm and pace with so many mew residents

      Protesters lay seige to Candela Architectural and Robert Moses’ city office

      From wikipedia:

      The eastern side of Riverside Drive, once a series of luxuriously finished rowhouses interspersed with free-standing nineteenth century mansions set in large lawns, today is lined with luxury apartment buildings and some remaining town houses from 72nd to 118th Streets.

      • Eric says:

        100% right.

        The decades many of us spend living in a place are just passing stages in the life of a great city like ours.

        Everybody wants to freeze their neighborhood in time, conveniently forgetting that what they cherish was once reviled by the people who liked the neighborhood the way it was before.

        Change is the essential nature of urban environments. If you can’t embrace it by all means complain but to keep saying “I just want things to stay a certain way” is deep, deep, denial over what living in a city means.

        • No patience says:

          Nonsense… should travel more. Progress doesn’t mean grotesque.

          • Nathan says:

            Define “grotesque”. I think this building looks great. I just wish it were taller and the units were smaller to allow more people to live here.

      • ronald shapley says:

        Thank you for posting this…… Very interesting how developers have encroached on our neighborhood since….what appears to be…the dawn of time. Scandalous !!!

      • Cato says:

        Greg –

        Please provide citations to your sources for these items.

        • Greg says:

          Check your satire meter daily. It seems to be malfunctioning. Though the wikipedia quote is a direct paste if you search for “riverside drive nyc”. My point however is not satirical. I trust its clear and objectivr even without specific references.

          • dannyboy says:

            “objectivr” perhaps, but not objective. The difference between these two periods of development is stark. I almost laughed-out loud when reading the allusion to “The San Remo is 400 feet high, according to YIMBY”.

      • ScooterStan says:

        THANK YOU for your wonderful post about all those “gweedy” developers “wuining” our “bewoved” UWS,…….. way-y-y-y back in 1921 !!

        Yes, 95 years later the cranks, NIMBY-ites, and professional hand-wringers are still with us, kvetching about any new development.

        Hey, cranks: here’s a great idea — INSTEAD of posting to the Rag, DO something! Go out onto Amsterdam Avenue and PROTEST! Join hands and circle the building site, and sing these adapted lyrics (from Rodger and Hammerstein’s wonderful “Oklahoma”):

        ‘Everything’s up to date in New York City / They gone about as fer as they can go / They went an’ built a skyscraper over seven stories high / ABOUT AS HIGH AS A BUILDIN’ ORTA GROW.’

        You’re sure to make WABC-TV’s ‘Aye, Witless-News’ and maybe even the tabloids.

        Since your best efforts will have no effect on stopping the building, here’s your NEXT step. Move to Brooklyn, where tall buildings are almost unheard of. Maybe Greenpoint, where the two-story buildings ARE modern…why, they even have ALUMINUM SIDING!

        And remember: Brooklyn is tres-chic and tres-trendy! And the best thing about Brooklyn is that it provides a GREAT VIEW OF MANHATTAN’S SKYSCRAPERS.

      • Independent says:

        Are there no limits, though?

        No point at which the reduction of space, the effects upon the environmental and quality-of-life become too great?

        No point at which these effects will result in the market losing value? How much longer can development continue at the present pace before the developers will have overreached?

    25. William Bahlke says:

      So incredibly sad! The beginning of the end of what was such a wonderful neighborhood.

      • dannyboy says:

        I can envision that happenning to the Lincoln Square neighborhood, if this kind of development goes unopposed. I’d hate to see that happen to that neighborhood.

    26. lisa says:

      There won’t be much room to walk on the sidewalk when the building trash is put out on Amsterdam.
      Looks like it will be a ratfest, much like what is happening downtown, around Fulton, Nassau and William Street etc, where really big luxury residential buildings going up on narrow streets.

    27. Pedestrians says:

      Wow, that will do a lot for affordable housing…for billionaires that is.

    28. nycityny says:

      It seems like an odd place for such a high end building. The rich folks there will have Rite Aid, a synagogue and Lincoln Towers as neighbors. If I had that kind of money I’d rather live on CPW or Riverside. Just a weird place for such luxury.

      • dannyboy says:

        A great many of the buyers are making offshore investments and have never seen the block.

    29. George says:

      It is much too high and it will block the light and view of my window facing West.
      The residents of the lower floors who spent a fortune to live there, will be subject to blaring sirens frequently racing up Amsterdam Avenue from Mt. Sinai West. Day and night.

    30. LS says:

      It is true that change is inevitable and there is change everywhere, from rural to urban, all over the world.

      But there are differences in the type of change, the reasons for the change, the swiftness of change etc.

      Similarly the type of change impacts on opinion – for example, would people who are OK with change due to increasing luxury development, also be OK with change due to increasing the number of homeless shelters?

      A proliferation of huge super-luxury buildings swiftly alter neighborhoods and snowball the nearby community. (There are other UWS luxury buildings in the works.)

      There are numerous and permanent civic, political, social, infrastructure, etc ramifications. And to reiterate – this is swift change driven by real estate development, not “organic” incremental change.

      On a related note, copying in an excerpt from a recent letter in the NY Times by a california professor.
      “Many forces are causing the San Francisco Bay Area affordable housing crisis. Yes, it’s a lack of building due to overly restrictive zoning and environmental laws and a longstanding high demand for housing because of the area’s attractiveness. But it’s also landlords’ greed (just because you can raise the rent doesn’t mean you have to).
      And the most overlooked cause is the breathtaking demand for high-end housing fueled by the concentration of very wealthy households here.
      The traditional law of supply and demand is suspended here because if you let developers build, they will (rationally) serve the high end of the market, which produces large profits and for which there is inexhaustible demand. Little or no housing will filter down to others…..”

      • Nathan says:

        That letter is ridiculous. The law of supply and demand certainly does still apply. Demand is only “inexhaustible” for things where price is not elastic, e.g. rent controlled apartments.

        • dannyboy says:

          How about: “There is inexhaustable demand for higher profits”? Does that work for you? …and to hell with the neighbors!

        • LS says:

          Seems that the letter-writer believes that there is a very large demand for affordable housing, but it is not being built – in part – because of the pressure of the luxury housing market.

          We know that food, housing,clothing are basic needs. It is possible to obtain affordable but healthy food and it is possible to obtain affordable warm and decent clothing – but housing is an entirely different situation. In many places such as NYC or SF not possible to obtain affordable and decent housing. Commuting 2 hours each way for housing is not decent. Impossible for regular people to access decent housing when the super wealthy want the space.

          Not too long ago, the wealthy pretty much gravitated to the East Side. Other parts of NYC were just where regular/non-wealthy people lived…. That paradigm has changed for multiple reasons – and thus luxury real estate has expanded to numerous neighborhoods that were previously for regular folks – middle/moderate/low-income New Yorkers.

    31. ST says:

      We clearly have no one representing us in city government.

      • dannyboy says:

        ‘Money Money Money’ by ABBA:
        In the rich man’s world
        All the things I could do If I had a little money
        It’s a rich man’s world.

      • Cato says:

        No one representing us in city government? How can you say that?

        Haven’t you been to any of Helen Rosenthal’s press conferences? She couldn’t hold press conferences if she weren’t representing us in city government.

        And what about all the new bicycle paths? Can’t complain about those, can you??

        Enjoy all the new buildings! (Though, in fairness, since this building was “as of right”, city government could not have stopped it even if we *did* have a real representative there.)

    32. Nj says:

      Omg what is wrong with this city? All these new building so high, no new schools to accommodate , air quality compromised and noise beyond imaginable tolerance !!
      With 79th st and 89th street buildings going up the air flow to my back apartment is nothing more than air pollution or garbage smell. I recall the days of fresh air flow in my place. So very sad!
      No wonder all my friends are getting roof gardens put into their buildings.

    33. Ellen says:

      This is incorrect, the existing old Lincoln Square Synagogue will not be demolished, The scaffolding is up and it is landmarked and must be incorporated into the new building,
      Ellen Devens, NYRS,
      Lic Associate RE Broker
      Brown Harris Stevens

    34. Steven says:

      Ah yes, the good old days. Why, I remember how much different the city was in 1949. E.B. White captured it so well in Here is New York:

      “In Greenwich Village the light is thinning: big apartments have come in, bordering the square…The city has never been so uncomfortable, so crowded, so tense. Money has been plentiful and New York has responded. Restaurants are hard to get into…At certain hours on certain days it is almost impossible to find an empty taxi and there is a great deal of chasing around after them. You grab a handle and open the door, and find that some other citizen is entering from the other side…By comparison with other less hectic days, the city is uncomfortable and inconvenient.”

      Yep, totally different city back then.

      • dannyboy says:


        Jane Jacobs organized protests to stop Robert Moses’ scheme to run a highway through the square. Read a little, it will help you understand why these treasures have been preserved for your and future generations’ benefit. Someone saved your neighborhood for your benefit.

    35. Jess says:

      The footprint itself is just so small – and the buildings around are significantly smaller, as well. this is going to look completely bizarre. I don’t feel like it belongs The school park will also probably lose out on some sun, which is sad.

      It’s true the city is always changing and a view/light is never guaranteed to last forever, but it does seem strange to put such an insanely tall building in this particular spot.

      • dannyboy says:

        School playgrounds are under constant seige by developers. They have no patron.

    36. jd says:

      I guess this will be in line with the tower on 99th St.

    37. Steven says:

      Will the developer plan to add a truly great benefit to the neighborhood? One that enhances the quality of life for not just the uber-wealthy building residents…but the entire Upper West Side Community??

      Similar to the newly redone Donnell Public Library – that has been superbly included into the base of the luxury tower opposite MoMa…and meant to serve all, not just the privileged few?

      • Cato says:

        No. Why should he (or she or it)?

        The property was bought “of right” and the developer can do whatever he or she or it feels like. Which means: Build it for, and sell it to, the rich.

        It’s all about money. Why should the developer give any of it away?

      • Jay says:

        How does a building improve one’s quality of life?

        If you want to know why housing is so expensive here, it’s partly because of onerous restrictions in place that are put upon everything that is constructed here. In reality this type of thinking is why only buildings for the uber-rich are built. So, you have no one to blame but yourself if you don’t like this project.

    38. Laura DiMasterno says:

      Beautiful! Amazing! I look forward to moving in, January 2019

    39. Iiari says:

      I think it looks great and will be an asset to the neighborhood and skyline. Just because I can’t afford to live there doesn’t mean someone else shouldn’t. Bring it on.

    40. GJ says:

      I agree with “Chipper’s” comment. Before approving this building the city should have demanded that an annex to PS 199 be created in the lower floors. The height of the building is way out of line for this neighborhood.

    41. helen says:

      looks ugly, another eyesore for the neighborhood and seriously 666 feet, they couldn’t go with a less evil number?

      • dannyboy says:

        Could’ve reduced the ceiling heights. Or the number of floors. Or their greed.

        But wait just there!

    42. Lucien says:

      Eventually all of Manhattan will be skyscrapers, it is inevitable as the population increases.

      However, the architecture rendering of it is so boring and drab. Definitely looks like it was designed from someone from Boston. Probably on a dark, gray, wet snowy, Monday.