YIMBY Visits 56 Leonard’s Penthouse in Tribeca

56 Leonard Street56 Leonard Street. Rendering via teaser site.

The 2010s have seen an unprecedented number of new skyscrapers pierce the Manhattan skyline. This week, YIMBY will tour six of the tallest developments currently under construction and recently completed, starting with what may now be the most iconic structure in Tribeca, at 56 Leonard Street. Today, we have a look at the views offered from its uppermost penthouse, from approximately 800 feet above street level.

Midtown and 56 Leonard Street from 50 West Street, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Midtown and 56 Leonard Street from 50 West Street, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

The building’s most obvious rival would be 8 Spruce, i.e. “New York by Gehry,” however, the dramatic Jenga-Style blocking on the higher floors makes it stick out more prominently on the skyline. This is also assisted by its lack of surrounding company. Located in Tribeca, the tower is somewhat a product of lucky happenstance.

Base of 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Base of 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

The 821-foot tall structure yields 145 condominiums, with design by Herzog & de Meuron. They are unique for using concrete in a vein similar to the Brutalist movement started after World War 2, and exemplified through bold forms. The material reassures one of how sturdy the building is.

Penthouse Terrace at 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Penthouse Terrace at 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

This could be a reason for peace of mind while standing on the cantilevered balconies. The stacked terraces also provide a unique opportunity for the building to be self-reflective.

Amenities floor staircase in 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Amenities floor staircase in 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

The entire ninth and tenth floor are dedicated to shared amenities for the whole building. This includes a library, indoor/outdoor theater, 75-foot long pool, sundeck, hot tub, fitness center, dining salon, and a conference center.

Piano-shaped kitchen island in 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Piano-shaped kitchen island in 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Ten penthouses crown the tower, each benefiting from the cantilevered balconies that define the structure’s design. Keycard-operated elevators give direct entry into the residences, which feature 14-foot ceilings. Each unit includes a piano-shaped island in the kitchen, wood-burning fireplaces, and a grand living room.

Lobby View, rendering by Anish Kapoor

Lobby View of the sculpture to come, rendering by Anish Kapoor

Outside the lobby, an empty space still awaits the installation of an Anish Kapoor sculptural piece. The artist is most famous for the famous Bean in Chicago.

Looking eastward from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Looking eastward from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Looking eastward, the only building that detracts from the view is the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building. The most significant development in that direction is One Manhattan Square, next to the Manhattan Bridge. The Extell-developed building has had its façade tantalizingly close to reaching the peak for some time now. As of last week, the glass is just six floors below the roof.

111 Murray from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

111 Murray from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Looking Downtown, construction at the Kohn Pedersen Fox-designed 111 Murray Street is progressing nicely. The external hoist still remains on the 750-foot tall building, but its completion is expected by the end of the year.

Downtown Manhattan from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Downtown Manhattan from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

3WTC looks completely finished from this angle. The external hoist has been removed from the building, but some façade installation remains on the eastern face.

Penthouse Terrace looking toward Midtown from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Penthouse Terrace looking toward Midtown from 56 Leonard, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Views to the north are incredible. The unobstructed views are part of what makes 56 Leonard’s anomalous location advantageous. 53 West 53rd Street can be seen rising above Rockefeller Center. Next, to that, 111 West 57th Street is just starting to become evident, with more than 700 feet left to rise. Central Park Tower is also making a splash, despite having nearly a third of its massing left before topping out.

Base of 56 Leonard where sculpture is expected, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Base of 56 Leonard where sculpture is expected, image by Andrew Campbell Nelson

Alexico and Hines are responsible for the development. The building has been settled for some time now. Condominium sales started in 2015, and occupancy began in 2016.

According to MansionGlobal, the 52nd-floor penthouse was recently purchased for $17.3 million by a company linked to insurance executive Dr. Reza Abbaszadeh. Early reporting indicated that the more pricey penthouses were expecting to sell for as much as $34.5 million for 5,489 square feet.

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7 Comments on "YIMBY Visits 56 Leonard’s Penthouse in Tribeca"

  1. Please pardon me for using your space: Look with joy on completed progress, I am happy! (Thanks to Andrew Nelson)

  2. Richard Rubin | May 14, 2018 at 2:22 pm | Reply

    In that “vein” my peace of mind is not improved by the cracks visible under the decks in some of the photos.

  3. Chris Becket | May 14, 2018 at 7:32 pm | Reply

    I really, really enjoy your photographs, Andrew.

  4. Those concrete cracks could have been eliminated had balcony thermal break units been installed in line with the insulation of the building. The cracking in the concrete projections is due to balcony expansion & contraction. The thermal break units act as an expansion joint in addition to conserving energy and other features.

  5. I really hate the lower levels.

    These towers need to respect the street more, the first ten floors should be a different material and feature different amenities.

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