175 Park Avenue’s 1,575-Foot-Tall Design Gains Approval in Midtown East, Manhattan

175 Park Avenue. Designed ny Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

At number one on our year-end countdown is Skidmore Owings & Merrill‘s mixed-use supertall at 175 Park Avenue in Midtown East, which earlier this month gained approval from the New York City Council. Developed by RXR Realty and TF Cornerstone, the 85-story tower has been reduced in height from 1,642 to 1,575 feet, still enough to surpass Central Park Tower for the title of tallest building in New York by roof height. 175 Park Avenue will eventually rise from the site of the Grand Hyatt hotel between the 108-year-old Beaux Arts Grand Central Terminal and the 91-year-old Art Deco Chrysler Building. The structure will yield 2.1 million square feet of Class A office space; 500 Hyatt hotel rooms on the upper floors spanning 453,000 square feet; 10,000 square feet of retail space on the ground, cellar, and second levels; and an elevated, 25,000-square-foot publicly accessible plaza space populated with artwork and views overlooking the surrounding Midtown streets.

175 Park Avenue, aka Project Commodore. Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

175 Park Avenue, aka Project Commodore, amongst the future Midtown East skyline. Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

175 Park Avenue, and the surrounding buildings along 42nd Street. Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

175 Park Avenue’s southern base along 42nd Street. Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

175 Park Avenue’s southern base along 42nd Street. Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

Steps leading to the terraces from 42nd Street. Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

Rendering by Skidmore Owings & Merrill

Demolition work has yet to begin on the Hyatt Grand Central New York. Its dark all-glass façade and monolithic massing will eventually make way for this new 21st century icon for the city, which will eclipse the pinnacle of Kohn Pedersen Fox’s One Vanderbilt on the opposite side of Grand Central Terminal, and the beloved Chrysler Building across Lexington Avenue.

Photo by Michael Young

Photo by Michael Young

Photo by Michael Young

Photo by Michael Young

Photo by Michael Young

The nearby One Vanderbilt. Photo by Michael Young

Plans were initially approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, and the project quickly entered the Uniform Land Use Review (ULURP) process this past May. 175 Park Avenue’s construction will be done alongside a partnership with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) to generate hundreds of millions of dollars in new infrastructure and transportation upgrades to the adjacent Grand Central Terminal. These include a new 5,328-square-foot transit hall, upgrades along Lexington Avenue, and a new subway entrance at East 42nd Street. An additional $38 million will be used for the East Midtown Public Realm Improvement Fund for public space improvements. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill intends to incorporate the office aspect with arts and cultural programming spread across 12 large-scale events per year with a partnering organization, as well as 25 additional events. All of these will be coordinated by a Cultural Advisory Committee.

Rendering by Ekoomedia, Inc. Courtesy of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

The Hyatt Grand Central New York is expected to be demolished over an 18-month period, followed by the construction of 175 Park Avenue. Given the scale of the undertaking, it’s likely the project won’t reach full completion until sometime near the end of the decade.

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45 Comments on "175 Park Avenue’s 1,575-Foot-Tall Design Gains Approval in Midtown East, Manhattan"

  1. David : Sent From Heaven. | December 31, 2021 at 8:22 am | Reply

    Seeing reported renderings, they came as a complete excited. Seeing the supertall stands in one structure, is a lot more impressive, than seeing it on a flat word: Thanks to Michael Young.

  2. David in Bushwick | December 31, 2021 at 8:23 am | Reply

    It’s no Empire State Building…

    • Right. Its better!

      • Seriously, who would want to work in the Empire State Building… we have made some progress on buildings over the last hundred years…

      • Better? You are the type who can’t admit modern architecture is hideous.

        • 1) “Modern architecture” doesn’t mean anything. There are hundreds of different styles that are being used in the modern era, several of them combined and use in different ways.
          2) Yes, better. Get over it. The ESB was made in the 30s, architecture has advanced since then.
          3) You’re a snob.

  3. It was about time Central Park Tower would be stripped away from 1st place. New York is growing like never before. Midtown is getting an unprecedented amount of skyscrapers, Hudson Yards is becoming the American Dubai, Brooklyn is getting its first supertall, and much more. However, Project Commodore is the king of the hill. It will dwarf the Chrysler Building of the last century, just showing how much New York has advanced since a century ago. Is it for the better? I guess that’s the question we are all debating on.
    Happy New Year’s Eve!

  4. Beautiful. Take down that gross Grand Hyatt.

  5. Such a dramatic improvement for Grand Central Station both inside and the immediate area surrounding it, with this project and One Vanderbilt. Can’t wait to see this begin to rise.

  6. Well rendered and symmetrical which makes it one of the best future supertall buildings in Manhattan and best of all not a stick building in oil refinery row.

  7. Goodbye to views from the west of the Chrysler building.

  8. This looks like a very bulky hulking design and too close to the Chrysler building. It will not be a complement to the skyline.

    • Fully agree, and the sideffect of overwhelming Grand Central with it hydeous pediment design.

      • Have you ever been in front of Grand Central? It is not overwhelmed from the ground level (where 99.9% of people will see it) at all. And from a skyline perspective it has been overwhelmed since what, over a 100 years ago?

    • Chyrsler building is already mostly hidden in the skyline. It will compliment 1 Vandy to its side.

  9. This, more than any recent building, I look forward to observing the construction of. It’s quite striking, and the base will be particularly interesting, both in terms of structure and the lovely finished product.

  10. I’m all for new construction but damn, right next to the Chrysler Building :/

    • And? Cities are living, breathing organisms. They evolve. The Chrysler Building is thankfully landmarked, but I am happy that it only applies tot hat tower and not its surroundings, as well.

  11. I’m 73 years old. I remember when the Pam Am Bldg opened in ’64 and when the “Jetson” rooftop helicopter pad was closed down because of a “mishap.” I remember the Commodore Hotel. The massiveness of this building makes the Pam Am Bldg. look like a small structure, not to mention the former “soaring” Chrysler Bldg. I guess progress must go on. What is good is that it will maintain the City as a leading business center and, incidentally, offer a great commute for LI’ers once the East Side Access project is finished.

  12. This tower is a monstrosity, dwarfing even the super tall One Vanderbilt with its bulk, nevermind the GCT and Chrysler buildings. As if 2m more SF of office space is what NYC needs! Horrible.

    • Couldn’y agree more bill

      • Couldn’t disagree more.

        • Not everything needs to be about business and profits

          • No, not everything does. But some things do, like this building. The entire reason Midtown East was rezoned was to promote office space.
            Not the mention this building looks awesome, adds plenty of public space, and massively upgrades the subterranean levels beneath it.

    • It does not “dwarf” 1 Vandy. Though it is considerably bigger.
      GCT has been dwarfed for over a century now by various different buildings.
      The Chrysler building is mostly hidden in the skyline nowadays anyway.

  13. Crushes the Chrysler Building.

  14. So we are looking forward to ‘a decade’ of construction chaos in that area!

  15. Love the bulk of this building ! About time New York got it’s balls back and designed proper Skyscrapers rather than these insipid skinny skyscrapers

  16. One more building to confirm that NYC has the ugliest, most lack of style, freshly outdated architecture in the world.

  17. It’s great. Let’s get started.

  18. Aside from its architecture, it is actually on Lex, not Park, even if there were an imaginary line drawn connecting the part of Park that is covered over by Grand Central. Like a few other buildings nearby that use the Park Ave address even though they wouldn’t be on Park either, having a Park Ave address is viewed as more prestigious than a Lex Ave address, although those few other buildings are not Lex and this building so brazenly is. If they can get away with it, I guess I can’t blame them.

  19. Why did they decrease the height by 70 feet?

  20. A surprisingly brutalist design from SOM. It looks for all the world like it was inspired by an idea for a vehicle that von Braun never got to build. Far too massive and overpowering for that location. And while the infrastructure improvements described are all very well, unless full and proper rehabilitation of the existing river tunnels (built more than a century ago), construction of the proposed new tunnels, acceleration of the remediation of the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, and protection of the whole system from future storm flooding are put in hand without further delays, a real possibility exists of there being no Manhattan subway for said improvements to serve.

  21. Steve Pearlston | January 7, 2022 at 7:40 am | Reply

    This will erase the Chrysler building. Is NYC OK with that?

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