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Permits Filed: 500 West 25th Street, Chelsea

The Eduardo Kobra mural that used to occupy the side of 253 10th Avenue, which is about to be redeveloped.This Eduardo Kobra mural occupied the side of 253 10th Avenue until earlier this year. photo by Flickr user Wally Gobetz

Days are numbered for the auto body shops, car washes, and gas stations near the High Line in Chelsea. They’re slowly being replaced with apartments, art galleries, and artisanal food shops. Last week, plans were filed for a new building that would replace a car stereo store on the corner of West 25th Street and Tenth Avenue.

The development at 500 West 25th Street would have a mix of commercial space and apartments. The ground floor and cellar would have 3,000 square feet of retail, followed by 13,000 square feet of residential space. There would only be six apartments, for average units measuring 2,100 square feet. The developer confirms that the apartments will be condos.

The second through fifth floors would hold one unit each, topped by a penthouse duplex and a roof deck.

The site also includes 253 10th Avenue, a four-story apartment building that has an Italian restaurant on the ground floor. Demolition plans have not yet been filed for the 19-and-a-half-foot wide structure. Eduardo Kobra’s iconic mural depicting a sailor kissing a nurse—based on Alfred Eisenstaedt’s famous 1945 photograph—graced the side of the building for several years.

500 West 25th Street and 253 10th Avenue in 2014, image via Google Maps

500 West 25th Street and 253 10th Avenue in 2014, image via Google Maps

Unfortunately, the previous building owners painted over the wall earlier this year. They probably wanted to prevent the artist from filing suit to save the mural (and possibly the building) under the Visual Artists Rights Act, the same law that the artists at 5 Pointz used to try and block the demolition of the street art project’s warehouses in Long Island City.

The buffed wall where the Eduardo Kobra mural used to be at 253 10th Avenue. photo by Mary Lane/NYC Cliche

The buffed wall where the Eduardo Kobra mural used to be at 253 10th Avenue. photo by Mary Lane/NYC Cliche

The Bloomberg administration rezoned this area back in 2005, switching the zoning on some blocks from light industrial to mixed-use. The rezoning also came with tenant protections. Developers have to get a certificate of no harassment from HPD in order to demolish or substantially alter any building in the West Chelsea district. That means the tenants would have to agree to leave of their own free will, usually with a buyout from the landlord.

GDS Development, headed by Michael Kirchmann, is developing and designing the project, and GF55 Partners are the architects of record.

Both the car stereo store and the apartment building have been owned by the same family since 1981. Neither lot has changed hands recently.

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3 Comments on "Permits Filed: 500 West 25th Street, Chelsea"

  1. Beautiful, colorful, cheerful, delightful, wonderful and I like this painting on the wall.

  2. I was one of the tenants in the building that were pushed out by the landlord with a uncountable lies. He told us the family needed the building for their grandchildren – personal use is one of the reasons to be able to evict rentstabilized tenants. When I received the eviction notice I had just given birth to my daughter so I was in no position to fight the landlord, stay in the apartment to defend my rights. Needless to say that these grandchildren never set foot into this old building. A real fraud!!!!!

    • Rebeca Fernanadez | October 18, 2016 at 12:09 am |

      I can not believe the city of New York, has allowed this terrible violation of destrucion Art, I find it absolutely deplorable, I think next week go to photograph as I have seen, various artistic works of Eduardo Kobra, in May I was to see who made Bob Dylan in Minneapolis, have seen Miami has one in Rome as well, so his work has been shown, the great artist who is the author of many famous murals, ( “he was the one who made the mural of the Olympic games in Rio 2016 “)
      Unacceptable violation of Art and citizens, the owner of the building (but the city government let him hope some asociasion Art in New York city take this case to court, to be processed, it is very sad that something so valuable is lose, I’m sorry what happened to you with your evection of his apartment, the rich get richer and the poor continue to be the most abused, how I see the world of injustices continue, absolutely a fraud I’m very sorry Rebeca

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