14th St. & 9th Ave.

A major reconstruction development at the NE corner of 14th St and 9th Avenue is creating quite a bit of controversy, first for the initially proposed tower in the interior lot, and then for the announcement that the landmarked row houses that had served as restaurants and stores in recent years, were too structurally unsound to salvage in the construction process.

As previously reported by YIMBY, the buildings were originally completed in the 1840s and are rare surviving examples of pitched-roof row houses, addressed as 44-54 Ninth Avenue and 351-355 West 14th Street, in Manhattan’s Gansevoort Historic District, also known as the Meatpacking District. According to the LPC, previously designs removed too much of the historic masonry façade, the proposed exterior changes were too great a contrast to the historic foreground, it failed to demonstrate the appropriateness of the infill, and that the proposed office tower was out of scale compared to the surrounding block.

Developer: Tavros Capital

Architect: BKSK Architects

In an effort to appeal to the LPC, new renderings reduced the height from 133 feet to 102 feet, or one full floor. The architects also removed the roof-level wind screen and reduced the typical floor height from 13 feet to 12 feet; thus, the tower component will top out at eight stories. It now appears the only remaining vestige of the original row houses will be the facades.

Rendering: courtesy of BKSK Architects

Photos and text by Brian J. Pape, AIA

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