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Thread: 408 Greenwich Street

  1. #1

    Default 408 Greenwich Street

    April 16, 2004

    RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE

    9-Story Project Approved in TriBeCa Warehouse District

    By JOSH BARBANEL

    A small investment bank has won final approval to build a nine-story building on the edge of a historic and trendy TriBeCa warehouse district, a project that is intended to weave together the old and new, both in the curved arch of its windows and the unusual mix of uses planned for the building.

    The project at 408 Greenwich Street, approved over strenuous community opposition, is to be built on the site of a garage on the corner of Hubert Street at the southern rim of the TriBeCa North Historic District, a mélange of expensive condominiums, cobblestone streets, garages, lofts and even some working warehouses.

    In keeping with this mix, the new building is meant to serve as a kind of oversize home office for the principals of Samuel A. Ramirez and Company, a privately owned downtown financial firm that describes itself as the 10th largest municipal bond underwriter and one of the oldest and largest Hispanic-owned investment banks in the United States.

    Under the plan, four floors of the 50-by-80-foot building will serve as corporate headquarters of the firm, with offices for its 75 employees based in New York. But the top two floors, with views of the Hudson two blocks away, will be the home of its president and founder, Samuel A. Ramirez, and his son, Samuel Jr., an executive vice president.

    The two floors immediately below will be divided into four 1,750-square-foot rental apartments, the younger Mr. Ramirez said. They will all share a roof deck. Rents of close to $6,000 a month are projected.

    "Some people like to have an hour to read the paper on the commute to work; that is not us," the younger Mr. Ramirez said. "This is not something that everyone does, it is probably not recommended by doctors, but it makes sense for us. We work downtown and we already live downtown."

    There will also be commercial space on the ground floor.

    The project had to run a gantlet of government approvals, including a review by the city's Landmarks Preservation Commission, which eliminated two additional stories, but which celebrated the final plan by the architect, Morris Adjmi, for providing a design that echoed elements of the traditional TriBeCa warehouse, in modern materials and style. The commission said the building "would enhance the special architectural character" of the district.

    "We worked with them and we were quite pleased with the results," said Robert B. Tierney, chairman of the Landmarks Commission. "Its good for TriBeCa. It shows that landmarking can be consistent with economic development.''

    The project was also reviewed by the Board of Standards and Appeals, which voted late last month to approve a hardship application from the company, allowing a taller, bulkier building than permitted by the zoning code, including 60 percent more floor space than would otherwise have been allowed.

    Neighbors and community leaders who fought for the original historic district designation for the area in the 1980's complained that the building was too big, dwarfing many 19th-century warehouses nearby. They are still considering a court challenge, which could delay the project.

    Carole DeSaram, president of the TriBeCa Community Association, said the project was an example of greed, not hardship, and she feared the project would lead other developers to try to "bust the zoning" in the historic district. "It is more than too high," she said. "The building is the most outrageous example of in-your-face greed."

    Mr. Tierney said that the landmarks commission does not rule on zoning and building bulk issues that are reviewed by other agencies. In approving the nine-story building, he said, his agency merely concluded that a building of that height was compatible with nearby buildings.

    The design by Mr. Adjmi is full of echoes of the industrial past of TriBeCa, while attempting, he said, to be something entirely new and different as well. The facade has the arched windows common in the older warehouses, but is fabricated from lightly colored solid blocks of precast concrete, rather than the dark masonry common in the area. The top floor is designed to relate to the heavy cornices that set off the top floors in nearby buildings.

    Mr. Adjmi, a former partner and disciple of the Italian architect Aldo Rossi, has made something of a specialty of creating new buildings in historic districts. He teamed with Mr. Rossi on the striking Scholastic Inc. building, at 557 Broadway, a new building in the midst of the SoHo-Cast Iron Historic District that was completed in 2001.

    According to the younger Mr. Ramirez, the project will cost $17 million to $20 million, with construction beginning as early as this summer and the building completed in about 12 months.

    Copyright 2004 The New York Times Company

  2. #2
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    It always amazes me that all of these community "leaders" describe ANY development as evil.

    Especially if someone gets something that they do not.

    Instead of just saying that they disaprove of the bulk of the building and, although they like the design of it, feel it is too ponderous a building to be generally approved.

    That would be an opinion. Otherwise it is just another example of the anal NYC community that would rather have a parking garage there because it is more "historic".

    Since when is a crappy building "Historic" and worth saving? Classic example would be the Clam Broth House building in Hoboken. The thing was always an eyesore, but since it is an OLD eyesore, it has to be preserved? What?!??!

    I respect people wanting to preserve the neighborhood so you don't end up with a 1960's interior tile, glass brick, aluminum stud building right next to a classic 1900 steel building (complete with all the effects), but why are people so AFRAID of change all the time?

  3. #3

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    Construction underway at 408 Greenwich St.


    Morris Adjmi Architects




  4. #4
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    The foundation for this one is nearly complete.

    How it looked last week ...


  5. #5

    Arrow hard hat area

    Aeiral view and street map.

    The one-story parking structure directly behind this site is a likely candidate for development: probably already in-the-works.
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    Last edited by infoshare; December 10th, 2006 at 11:30 AM. Reason: new text

  6. #6
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    That ^^^ building is 412-422 Greenwich Street (aka 67-69 Laight Steet).

    DOB shows a DISPAPPROVED application dated 11.30.06, filed by Joseph P. Lombardi, the same architect doing the "twin" projects around the corner at 414 & 415 Washington Street :

    Job Description:
    Separation of two buildings on two lots presently under one Certificate of Occupancy. Filed for issuance of corrected Certificate of Occupancy for each building and lot. No work or change to use is proposed under this application. Buildings originally had seperate Certificate of occupancy.

  7. #7

    Default Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    That ^^^ building is 412-422 Greenwich Street (aka 67-69 Laight Steet).

    DOB shows a DISPAPPROVED application dated 11.30.06, filed by Joseph P. Lombardi, the same architect doing the "twin" projects around the corner at 414 & 415 Washington Street :
    This 414-415 bldg is good work: thanks for the news.
    Last edited by infoshare; December 10th, 2006 at 12:24 PM. Reason: typo

  8. #8
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    That ^^^ building at 116 Hudson Street

  9. #9

    Default NIce

    I made the edit Like that design too...... thanka a mil. Ablarc likes it too......
    http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/sh...6&postcount=15

  10. #10
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    I agree -- the Hudson Street project a good one.

    In fact almost all of the projects in the North Tribeca area are good (except for that weird one at 88 Laight ).

    Hopefully the new Parker developments along West Street will rise to the occasion with some good design.

  11. #11

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    This building is awesome. It reminds me of the 414/415 Washington Street duo!

  12. #12

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  14. #14
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Zip, we're on each others trail ... one day no doubt we'll back into each other while framing a shot

    From Saturday 3.3.07:

    ***
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  15. #15
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Facade was going up at 408 Greenwich this weekend ... truckloads of large pre-cast concrete panels (constructed to have the look / form of cast iron) were keeping the crew busy (some of them, anyway):










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