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Carter's View

From Archives Start Your Engines!
By Carter Horsley Thursday, November 2, 2006
Marketing has begun for 15 William Street, a 47-story residential condominium development in the Financial District.

The marketing mascot for the project is a tuxedo-clad beaver holding a martini glass and the first, rather racy rendering of the project, shown at the right, indicates that stylistically the building falls into the "racing car/flying cab/Fith Element" category of spirited but spiffy mayhem, or, as a press release on the building states, "a departure from the mundane and the minimal."

Tsao & McKown is the architectural firm for the project.

The building, which will contain 319 apartments, is being developed by SDS Investments, of which Tamir and Alex Sapir and S. Lawrence Davis are principals, and Andr¿alazs.

The project is known as the William Beaver House because it is located at the intersection of William Street and Beaver Street. It is across the street from Delmonico's.

The tower will be clad in "subtly contrasting fields" of bronze and gray brick and yellow-glazed brick and it will have a street-level base covered in ipe, a reddish-brown wood.

SDS Investments acquired the site last year from the Manocherian family for about $90 million.

The building will have 258 simplex residences, 10 duplex "townhouses" with terraces, three penthouses with terraces, 48 custom furnished units as well as many studio and one- and two-bedroom units.

Apartments will have 9-foot-8-inch-high ceilings, windows, Burmese teak floors and Bosch washers and dryers. Living room ceilings in the duplex units will have 18-foot-high ceilings.

Mr. Balazs developed the Mercer Hotel and 40 Mercer Street in SoHo and One Kenmare Square.

The building will have an outdoor dog-walking garden, a 30-person screening room/disco lounge with lavender chaise "cinema beds" and wet bar, and a Penthouse Sky Lounge with catering kitchen and private dining room and sun deck.

The lobby entrance will have a see-through ceiling supporting a glass-encased, lighted outdoor Jacuzzi that is part of a second floor amenity center. The notion of looking up as one enters the building at the bottom of people sitting in a Jacuzzi has amused some posters on some websites. The amenity center will also have a 60-foot lap pool, outdoor basketball court with bleachers, a squash court, a gym and handball and tetherball courts.

The building has a driveway paved with the same marble used in the lobby, which will have a large, oval, sunken "conversation pit" with fireplace, and the lobby will be open to the public and offer prepared foods.

Kitchens will have sliding backsplashes that conceal the facet and sliding butcher-block panels that conceal the sink or cooktop.

Bedroom apartments have bathrooms that open fully into the bedrooms.

The building is expected to be completed in early 2008.

Prices are expected to start at about $890,000 for a one-bedroom and range up to about $2.5 million for a penthouse with terrace.

Mr. Balazs was quoted in an article by Steve Cutler in The Real Deal as saying that "We wanted to back off of an all-glass building and make it contextual, yet fun and somewhat distinguished at the same time."

An article by Julie V. Iovine in The New York Times yesterday quoted Mr. Balazs as sayng "If you have children, go to Battery Park City."
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.
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