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Carter's View

"Blue," the 16-story residential condominium building at 105 Norfolk Street on the Lower East Side, is expected to be topped out in May and occupancy is scheduled for the fall.

The building is about half-way up. It will have 32 apartments that will range in price from about $745,000 to $3,950,000. About a third of the units have already been sold.

A two-bedroom, two-bath unit with about 1,975 square feet on the 15th floor is priced at about $2,350,000 and a one-bedroom, 1-bath unit with 785 square feet on the 8th floor is priced at about $880,000.

The building has been designed by Bernard Tschumi, whose projects include Parc Villette in Paris, the Vacheron Constantin headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, a concert hall in Rouen, France, and the Lerner Hall Student Center at Columbia University where he was dean of architecture from 1988 to 2003.

The design of "Blue" is notable for its unusual, angled geometry and its "pixilated" facade of blue glass.

Norfolk Hudson LLP, a venture of Angelo Cosentini and John Carson, is the developer. Its other projects include The Atalanta at 25 North Moore Street, 637 Hudson Street and 58 Thomas Street.

The building is on the site of the former parking lot belonging to Ratner's, the famous kosher restaurant, and its sales office at 100 Norfolk Street occupies Ratner's former restaurant kitchen that was briefly occupied by Lansky's Lounge, a night club named after Meyer Lansky, before and after the restaurant's closing last year.

The building, will have a full-time doorman, reportedly the first residential building on the Lower East Side to have such a feature, as well as apartments with bamboo floors, floor-to-ceiling windows, individual storage units, and residential communal outdoor space on the second and fifth floors.

Its entrance will be a plaza with large rocks and bamboo trees in front of an building-wide angled marquee. Kitchens will have glass-fronted cabinets and bathrooms will have pebbled floors and large raised sinks.

The Norfolk Street project is separated by a one-story building that houses a nightclub from another striking new condominium project, the "Switch" building at 109 Norfolk Street, a 7-story building now under construction designed by Narchitects where the floors zig-zag and forth with gentle angles creating a lively facade and a new twist on bay windows. It is just to the south of the very pleasant, red-brick Asian Americans for Equality Community Center at 111 Norfolk Street designed by Victor M. Morales, a building that was completed last year.

"Blue" will be the most visible of three new projects on Norfolk Street between Delancey and Rivington Streets. Just up the block is the "Switch" building at 109 Norfolk, a 7-story building designed by Narchitects with a zig-zag facade of angled floors that is near another new building at 115-9 Norfolk Street that has been designed by Grzywinksi Pons Architects, the firm that designed THOR (The Hotel on Rivington Street) nearby at 107 Rivington Street.
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Architecture Critic Carter Horsley Since 1997, Carter B. Horsley has been the editorial director of CityRealty. He began his journalistic career at The New York Times in 1961 where he spent 26 years as a reporter specializing in real estate & architectural news. In 1987, he became the architecture critic and real estate editor of The New York Post.