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A blog from CityRealty (Links below will take you to the 6sqft site)

Carter's View

Swig Equities filed plans Wednesday with the Department of Buildings for a 53-story, mixed-use tower with 92 residential units at 45 Broad Street.

Phil Jones, director of development for Swig Equities, told Cityrealty.com today that its plans for the site are still in the "very early, conceptual stages."

It is south of the company's recent residential conversion of 25 Broad Street, where he obtained permission last April from the Landmarks Preservation Commission for permission to demolish a rear wing.

25 Broad Street was declared an individual landmark in 2000.

The demolition would cut off the top 20 stories of the 21-story wing, which would remove about 17 percent of the building's mass and 36 apartments. The wing extends to the south from the middle of the building and extends into the middle of the block and is not very visible because of nearby high-rise buildings including a new residential tower under construction at 15 William Street.

Swig Equities hopes to use the cut-off mass, which would amount to about 80,000 square feet, at 45 Broad Street. The transfer would add about 12 stories to the 35-story building then planned for the site.

Kent Swig, a principal of Swig Equities, told CityRealty.com after the commission's meeting that details still had not been finalized for 45 Broad Street, but that it would contain retail space, a hotel and residential condominiums.

Mr. Jones today said those plans had not changed. James Davidson of SLCE is the architect of record for the new building and Mr. Jones said that Moed de Armas & Shannon will design the tower.

25 Broad Street is a 21-story building that was the world's largest building when it was completed in 1902. Located on the southeast corner of Broad Street and Exchange Place, it is one block south of the New York Stock Exchange. It was designed in 1899 by Robert Maynicke and his plans were revised the next year by Clinton & Russell.

The building is distinguished by its very handsome facade and entrance and its stunning and huge lobby. It has a three-story rusticated base with a five-step-up entrance.

In their wonderful book, "The A.I.A. Guide to New York City, Fourth Edition" (Three Rivers Press, 2000), Elliot Willensky and Norval White observed that the building is "worthy of the best on Park Avenue." In fact, the building predates most of the buildings on Park Avenue and its huge marble lobby with coffered ceiling is worthy of the world's most luxurious hotels.

According to the Skyscraper Museum, the building remained the world's largest building from 1902 to 1907 when it was surpassed in size by the City Investing Building. When it was completed, the "Broad Exchange Building," as it was known, was "the largest and most valuable office building in all of Manhattan" and, according to the Swig Equities's website, "was instantly recognized as one of the most desirable addresses for Wall Street's brokers and bankers, providing headquarter facilities for Paine, Webber and Company for nearly seventy years."

The building was converted from an office building in 1997 by Crescent Heights to 346 rental apartments. The building had been vacant for several years after the stock market crash of 1987. Mr. Swig acquired the building from Crescent Heights in 2005 for about $200 million.

John Cetra, the architect in charge of the conversion and renovation plans for 25 Broad Street, told the commission that the plans for the building would restore the rear wall of the building and replace an angled parapet wall with many small arches that had been removed in 1928.

The site at 45 Broad Street was once occupied by the firm of Joseph Meeks & Sons, one of American's most prominent furniture makers in the mid-18th Century, and more recently by an 8-story commercial building that Swig Equities demolished.
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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.
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