The first permits are up for Louis Vuitton’s horizontal expansion to 743 5th Avenue, which will apparently result in the temporary closure of portions of its retail flagship, at 1 East 57th Street. LVMH Moet Hennessey “Luis” Vuitton is listed as the developer.
743 5th Avenue’s floor area will be quite small, totaling 1,580 square feet, but the one-story building will stand 85 feet tall, offering soaring ceilings that would normally befit an eight-story structure.
The New York Observer reported on LVMH’s acquisition of the lot back in 2007, when it sold for $60 million. An original structure spanning 20,000 square feet has already been demolished, paving the way for work to begin on Louis Vuitton’s expansion.
Demolition of the original structure does beg the question of where the “missing” air rights are in the latest permits, given the large reduction in overall square footage. Nearby sites would be unlikely for a residential assemblage, and the value of Fifth Avenue retail in the proposed format will be astronomical, though 18,000 square feet would still fetch an extremely high sum given the site’s address and neighborhood.
No completion date for the expansion has been announced.
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