Demolition Set to Begin on 542 West 22nd Street, Future Hauser & Wirth Location

542 West 22nd Street542 West 22nd Street, image from Google Maps

When it comes to sweeping and far-reaching change, few areas have transformed as rapidly as West Chelsea. But while condo-fication is normally associated with displacement of galleries, that is not the case here, and now demolition applications have been filed for an old building at 542 West 22nd Street, which will be cleared to make way for a new outpost by Hauser & Wirth.

Annabelle Selldorf will design the new structure, though its appearance is not yet public. The New York Times first reported the news this past February, also noting that the site’s area is 7,400 square feet.

The site’s zoning allows for a facility FAR of 6.5, which would yield a structure of approximately 48,000 square feet, assuming the developers haven’t acquired any additional air rights.

Galleries appear to be making somewhat of a resurgence in the area, though the format is typically different from a completely new build. Just two blocks to the north, JDS Development’s 514 West 24th Street will also have space for an art gallery on its first floor, as will Victor Group’s 239 Tenth Avenue, aka The Getty, which has already played host to one of the neighborhood’s more memorable art installations.

The existing 3-story building at 542 West 22nd Street is completely forgettable, and Selldorf’s replacement will likely be far superior. Whether residential or commercial, most new developments in the area are quite attractive, and on the same block, COOKFOX is designing 510 West 22nd Street, which will abut the High Line (and for which demolition permits were also filed relatively recently).

As for Hauser & Wirth’s new outpost, completion is currently anticipated for 2018.

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