BY: STEPHEN SMITH ON NOVEMBER 3RD 2014 AT 3:00 PM
548 West 53rd Street, image from Google Maps
Earlier today, architecture firm Perkins Eastman filed an application for a new building permit, for a large affordable housing project in Hell’s Kitchen. The 13-story building will reach 135 feet, and will include 125,000 square feet of total construction area. It will sit directly south of the luxury rental Mercedes House, designed by Enrique Norten’s TEN Arquitectos and developed by Two Trees Management.
The building, at 530-548 West 53rd Street, is part of a broader development scheme for land on the east side of 11th Avenue between West 51st and West 53rd Streets. Developed by the Clinton Housing Development Company, this particular structure will include 103 apartments – we’re guessing all or mostly affordable housing, given the developer – spread over 107,000 square feet of residential space, plus 16,000 square feet of commercial floorspace (including retail and, curiously, a “tire shop,” according to the building’s Schedule A filing) and a 1,250-square foot community facility space.
The broader scheme, coordinated by the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development, will bring 530 total units (of which 206 will be let at below-market rates) to the area, along with nearly 60,000 gross square feet of commercial space and two community gardens.
On the same blocks, Taconic Investment Partners is also building 525 West 52nd Street, a 400-unit luxury rental building that will include around 80 below-market units.
And the Clinton Housing Development Company is no stranger to the area – they’ve also renovated a number of older buildings in the far West 50s.
The land in the far West 40s and 50s east of 11th Avenue was, for the latter half of the 20th century, zoned only for industrial and commercial space (as the land between 11th and the Hudson River still is). But starting around the turn of the millennium, the city began rezoning parcels for more residential development – first with ad hoc spot rezonings initiated by individual landowners, finally culminating with the 2011 West Clinton rezoning, which cleared the east side of 11th Avenue for as-of-right housing.