A large amount of black netting and scaffolding is going up on all sides of the limestone and terracotta curtain wall of the Flatiron Building as it embarks on a nearly yearlong renovation. Designed by Daniel Burhnam, the 117-year-old steel-framed landmark is a classic example of the old New York architecture and continues to draw people from around the world to take in its iconic prow at the intersection of Broadway and Fifth Avenue.
Photos from multiple angles show the scaffolding covering up the majority of the corners of the building.
As of now the ground floor is still home to several retail tenants, but everything above has been vacant since the departure of Macmillan Publishers to the Financial District in mid-June, leaving behind 21 floors of empty space in one of the city’s most photographed pieces of architecture.
The Flatiron Building will almost definitely remain an office building, though it’s uncertain who the next anchor tenant will be. One of the most prominent changes in the renovation is the removal of the air-conditioning units attached to almost every office window on the wide flat sides of the structure. The neutral color and size of each unit was small and subtle enough to be disguised among the intricate and textured walls. All of the units have been taken off and we can finally get a glimpse of what the Flatiron Building will look like without them. Central heating and cooling will be implemented inside, along with a new sprinkler system, a second egress staircase, and upgraded elevators. It’s unclear if and how the floors, interior walls, and ceilings will be altered.
GFP Real Estate estimated the restoration and renovations would cost between $60 and $80 million.