Construction Update: 217 West 57th Street

217 West 57th Street217 West 57th Street - image from YIMBY reader Andrew

YIMBY reader Andrew sent in the above shot of 217 West 57th Street, where Extell’s Nordstrom Tower will soon rise. Equipment is positioned on-site, and the former Beethoven Pianos building is completely gone – demolition was extremely swift.

Besides the overview photo, a new permit has also been filed – and it adds to the ongoing height saga, as the tower is listed at 1,550 feet, contrary to Gordon Gill’s statement that it would rise 1,423′. The discordance between public comments and the permits may indicate that Extell intends on building the tallest tower in the Western Hemisphere; at the Landmarks hearing, Barnett mentioned the 1,550-foot figure remained on the table.

If the ultimate result is a refined deviation from the massing model shown at the landmarks meetings – and finally returns the country’s tallest title to New York from Chicago – it will be a pleasant ending to the design saga. Given the competition posed by projects like 111 West 57th and 220 Central Park South, Barnett will need to ensure The Nordstrom Tower is more than distinguished, and in this case, going taller could only help.

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