Demolition work is ramping up for PENN 15, a 56-story, 1,200-foot commercial supertall at 15 Penn Plaza in Midtown, Manhattan. Designed by Foster + Partners and developed by Vornado Realty Trust, the 2.7 million-square-foot tower will replace the aging Hotel Pennsylvania and stand as the tallest component in the 7.4 million-square-foot Penn District master plan. 401 Hotel Reit is the owner and Northstar Contracting Group is the demolition contractor for the property, which is bound by Seventh Avenue to the west, West 32nd Street to the south, and West 33rd Street to the north.
Since our last update in early March, scaffolding and construction netting has begun to enshroud the 102-year-old McKim, Mead & White-designed hotel, obscuring portions of its brick and stone façade.
We could likely see the entire structure covered by the summer, with the bulk of demolition proceeding in 2023. We have documented other even taller buildings in New York City being razed in less than a year, most notably being the former 707-foot-tall Union Carbide Building at 270 Park Avenue. Hotel Pennsylvania’s 20-story superstructure is just under half of the height of JPMorgan Chase’s old headquarters, so demolition could potentially reach street level before the middle of next year.
Below are photographs taken in early March that show the former main entrance to the hotel before the sidewalk was closed off to the public and covered with scaffolding.
The following photo from a few days ago shows the a partial view of the front steps to the lobby.
Demolition is expected to finish by July 2023, as noted on the construction board. No completion date for PENN15 has been formally announced yet.