Permits were just issued for construction at 100 West 125th Street, which will soon be occupied by a six-story building with 161,000 square feet of retail space. Previous news on the site indicated construction would begin this past May, but the lot remains human-free; now that permits have been approved, excavation should be around the corner.
Though no renderings have been made available, the project will likely appear similar to other major retail developments on 125th Street, which tend towards forgettable. While welcoming big-box retailers to New York is a necessity, creating projects that embrace verticality and density should be a priority, given the sterility of the current crop of new buildings.
Nevertheless, 100 West 125th will be a positive change for the neighborhood, as it occupies a prominent intersection and has been bare ground for many years; 125th Street is finally emerging as a cohesive retail corridor, with most empty lots now redeveloped. The street has taken on a character not so different from West 34th Street, with a similar range of low to mid-rent retailers.
100 West 125th Street’s developer is Wharton Realty LLC and the architect of record is Steven Gambino. Per The Commercial Observer, tenants will include the first Whole Foods in Harlem, as well as an 8,500-square foot American Eagle store; the ‘Disneyfication’ of Times Square has clearly spread north, and Harlem is transitioning into a major tourist destination.
Completion is expected in 2015.
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