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

Features

Sutton 58. Credit: Gamma Real Estate (left) / Ondel Hylton (right) Sutton 58. Credit: Gamma Real Estate (left) / Ondel Hylton (right)
New York is a city of contrasts wrought through proximity and diversity. In the Sutton Place neighborhood in Midtown’s northeast corner, charming pre-war walk-ups share space with blockbusting postwar towers, quaint side streets sit around the corner from the gridlock madness of the Queensboro Bridge approach, and a stately, tiled vault arcade sits beneath two levels of zooming traffic. In news regarding the latter, the Landmarks Preservation readies to hear the arguments in favor of a Trader Joe’s supermarket proposed [PDF] in the now-vacant arcade beneath the bridge. A block to the south, beyond the mammoth brick cliff of the Sovereign Apartments, the slender tower at Sutton 58 continues to rise to its 847-foot pinnacle.
Historic view of Sutton Place area and the Queensboro Bridge circa 1908

The BridgeMarket Trader Joe’s
In 1909, the Queensboro Bridge (aka the 59th Street Bridge) connected Midtown Manhattan with Queens and contributed to the borough’s subsequent transformation from a semi-rural district to the city’s second-most-populous borough. At the Manhattan side, the roadway sat atop an open-air, vaulted arcade that looked like something out of ancient Rome or Byzantium, with domed vaults sitting on shallow arches. This so-called “Catalan vault” was clad in herringbone-pattern Guastavino tile, named after Rafael Gusastavino, the Spanish architect that introduced the system to the United States in 1885. Guastavino tile was used in over 200 structures around the city, and is still on glorious display in Ellis Island’s Great Hall, at the Grand Central Terminal, at the Manhattan Municipal Building, and elsewhere.
 
 
 
 
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The Guastavino arcade is the primary point of focus at tomorrow’s upcoming LPC session. The arcade has been used as a produce market since the bridge’s opening, and was enclosed in grand arched windows by 1916. But while the exterior remained largely unchanged in exterior appearance ever since, the space beneath the vaults has seen ups and downs. The market closed in 1930 at the start of the Great Depression, and the city began studies to rehabilitate the crumbling space only by the 1970’s. Even those efforts stalled for decades more, and the BridgeMarket Food Emporium opened in 2000. The Emporium reigned as the city’s arguably grandest food hall until it closed in 2015.
Allegedly, the Emporium’s steep produce prices did not help its business model. However, the location, situated between Midtown East and the Upper East Side, some of the most densely-populated and affluent parts of the city, remains a prime spot for a mid- to upmarket food hall, a niche that the proposed Trader Joe’s would readily fill. The scheme leaves the essentials of the original Food Emporium in place, down to the location of signage and delivery zones. The supermarket would share the under-bridge space with Gustavino’s, an existing wedding and event venue located in the loftier eastern portion of the arcade.
 
 
 
 
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Sutton 58 - 3 Sutton Place
A block to the south, luxury condominium Sutton 58 continues its climb to its eventual 847-foot-tall pinnacle, which will be adorned with dramatic, one-of-a-kind vertical coffered niches (here’s hoping for some dramatic nighttime illumination to spice up the skyline). The curtain wall has already arrived at the tower’s midsection, where four-story bands of floor-to-ceiling windows are grouped in a grid of light-colored panel strips that soften the tower scale and echo the neighborhood’s brick and stone palette. At the moment, the tower likely stands around 600 feet tall.
At one point, the tower played a part in a curious “controversy” that exemplifies the one-percenter fight to keep their slice of the city to themselves by excluding the rest by any means necessary. Sutton 58 is an example of street-friendly development that makes effective use of space by stacking its occupants vertically within a small site rather than sprawling outward like a suburban mall. The site occupies around 6,000 square feet, comparable with an average mid-rise pre-war building, as is its tally of 121 units, a figure unlikely to overwhelm the neighborhood infrastructure. Furthermore, the historicist base makes overt gestures to its pre-war neighbors.
via ZD-1 diagram (NYC DOB)
Across the street rises The Sovereign, an antithesis to many of the virtues in evidence at Sutton 58. The 491-foot-tall building does not rise as tall as its new neighbor eventually will, but in every other way it is an indisputably larger and more arrogant exercise in architecture. The staggered mass of muddy brown brick and exposed concrete measures a whopping 250 feet wide, greater than the standard north-south city block. Its 1.14 million square feet of floor space more than triple the 313,000-square-foot program of Sutton 58, while the 63,000-square-foot lot eats up ten times as much space. To give credit where it's due, the Sovereign does contribute a large plaza for neighborhood use, yet the brick and concrete behemoth above still casts an enormous shadow across many blocks to the north.
Sutton 58 - 3 Sutton Place Sutton 58 as of late February 2020
New York City is no stranger to large buildings, and none of these facts would be newsworthy regarding a 1970’s building, except for the amusing reaction of a small group of the Sovereign’s residents and other well-heeled locals intent on keeping elite views. Anyone that has spent any time living in the city knows that views come and go unless they are within a specifically protected historic district. In Chelsea, residents at a high-rise building at 206 West 17th Street pooled their resources and purchased the air rights to an adjacent lot rather than having it replaced by a tower, knowing full well that they are not entitled to someone else’s property the views therein.
Surprisingly, such understanding is not common to everyone. Though the slender Sutton 58 will block a small fraction of views from the massive Sovereign, a group of residents luxury skyscrapers formed a coalition to fight the new building even though it’s being built as-of-right in full compliance with the law. In an apparent, hilariously out-of-touch attempt to relate to the woes of the average New Yorker, an art collector living at the 48th floor of the Sovereign bemoaned that the new building would overshadow over her private collection of Pablo Picasso paintings and cause her to feel like she “would be in a dungeon -- in chains.”
Opponents of the building proposed capping the height of new buildings in their neighborhood at about 25 stories or 260 feet under the guise of “contextual” development, even though buildings like the Sovereign itself rise nearly twice as high. As one report points out (h/t YIMBY), the height limit just happens to conveniently sit exactly one floor below the 26th floor apartment of Alan Kersh, which would preserve the views for the leader of an opposition group. Crain’s posted a graphic showing how the height limit would create shorter, fatter towers that block out many more views from the average buildings in the neighborhood, sparing only sky-high residents that already live in the area.
Fortunately for the its future residents, and unfortunately for penthouse-living art collectors that will suffer under the terrible yoke of an occasional passing shadow, Sutton 58 continues to rise, with an expected topping-out later this year.

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Spacious 1 Bedrooms with outdoor space and in-residence w/d View Property
Luxury Homes in Midtown | Newly Renovated Studio-2BR Homes View Property
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