Korean Cultural Center Nears Completion at 122-126 East 32nd Street in Murray Hill, Manhattan

The Korean Cultural Center of New York. Rendering SAMOO Architecture

Construction is nearing completion on the Korean Cultural Center of NYC, the new seven-story home of the Consulate General of the Republic of Korea, NY at 122-126 East 32nd Street in Murray Hill. Designed by SAMOO Architecture PC and developed by Level Group, the 120-foot-tall structure will yield 36,500 square feet and is aiming for LEED Certification. KSK Construction Group is the general contractor for the property, which is located between Park Avenue South and Lexington Avenue.

Work has progressed ploddingly on the project since groundbreaking in 2018, but recent photos show the structure finally getting close to the finish line. Much progress has occurred in the past six months since our last update, when construction was underway on the metal framework for the main glass façade, and the sculptural upper extension sat behind scaffolding. The reflective glass curtain wall is now complete and all of the scaffolding has been dismantled with the exception of the ground floor.

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

In addition to the main glass façade, work has also concluded on the egress stairway on the eastern side of the property that is clad in gray paneling and narrow rectangular windows. The sculptural roof fixture is best seen from Park Avenue.

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

Korean Cultural Center. Photo by Michael Young

YIMBY last reported that The Korean Cultural Center will provide cultural and community spaces divided into three distinctive zones with separate public spaces, semi-public lecture rooms, and private administrative offices and artist studios. The structure will also contain a below-grade 200-seat theater, an exhibition space on the second floor, an arts and crafts center on the fourth floor, classrooms on the fifth floor, and administrative offices on the top floors.

The Korean Cultural Center of NYC could conceivably finish construction before the end of the year.

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12 Comments on "Korean Cultural Center Nears Completion at 122-126 East 32nd Street in Murray Hill, Manhattan"

  1. Well, this turned out WAY different from the renderings. It seems everything has been toned down. It’s almost now just a glass box with a bronze art piece on top.

  2. David : Sent From Heaven. | June 4, 2022 at 9:21 am | Reply

    With these new views I tried to keep it, as glass facade as possible. But obviously there is always going to be a level of beautiful reflected, and prominent self contained on roof: Thanks to Michael Young.

  3. David in Bushwick | June 4, 2022 at 12:11 pm | Reply

    Well, it looks nothing like the rendering, thank goodness.

  4. I wish there were some interior shots—I can’t tell what’s inside the box! And the thing on top…🙄

  5. They need to build the original in Dubai. This toned down one is kinda fugly.

  6. What a letdown… almost as bad as Korean BBQ! 😝

    • Clearly you haven’t been to the right Korean BBQ. I recommend COTE.

      • Abagail Frost | June 11, 2022 at 10:10 am | Reply

        FYI Chris, this is a construction website, not a food blog. And I agree with Scott, you should be ashamed of yourself and wish whoever runs this site bans you from here

    • Scott Preston | June 11, 2022 at 10:00 am | Reply

      How dare you say something so ignorant, insensitive and insulting. I’m an Irish American immigrant and have been living in America for almost 59 years and love Korean BBQ and other ethnic cuisines. You may have had a bad experience with Korean food but that doesn’t give you any right to insult a whole race of people.

  7. Like every other project that promised a translucent glass envelope, the design renderings got configured in a way that neglected to show how reflective the glass would be. I have passed by the building numerous times and the photos are accurate in showing what an opaque facade has been installed. My rendering software doesn’t easily let me cheat at that deception unless I configure the glass as completely non-reflective and 99% translucent. It’s sadly just another glass box…unless they light up the interior at night, but still….

  8. A spaceship has landed in the City

  9. Bait & Switch

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