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Old Posted Nov 26, 2008, 10:10 AM
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Now Showing! Extell’s Portzamparc-Designed Riverside Center

by Eliot Brown
November 25, 2008

Long in the planning stages, Gary Barnett and his Extell Development Co. have finally let loose images of Riverside Center, their planned 3.3 million-square-foot mostly residential complex at the base of the West Side development once known as Trump City. The Department of City Planning put on its Web site today an environmental review document for the project, a draft scope, which outlined the specifics of what Extell wants to put on the site, currently a series of parking lots.

The plan calls for five buildings, designed by Pritzker-winning Christian de Portzamparc, each a skinny tower that would run east-west on the two-block superblock.

In all, the complex would have 2.75 million square feet of residential, 209,000 square feet of retail, and 239,000 square feet of hotel space, along with a few other uses.

The plan will ultimately need approval of the City Council and City Planning Commission, and there certainly is some strong resistance so far among West Side residents and elected officials. Extell is reopening a development agreement from the 1990s crafted after a multi-year battle between the site owner at the time, Donald Trump, and a set of civic groups and elected officials.

Mr. Barnett says the zoning, which was intended for a 150-story NBC world headquarters tower, is no longer relevant, and thus he wants to change it to residential.
However, he also wants to increase the amount of density he can build on the site by about 700,000 square feet, an ambitious request that will likely be strongly contested.

In any event, the scoping document is an early first step in the public approval process. A hearing on the document is slated for Jan. 8. The formal seven-month approval process typically begins several months after that.

More images from the scope:

The view from the Hudson

Looking from Jersey

Looking from overhead:

NEW YORK heals.

“Office buildings are our factories – whether for tech, creative or traditional industries we must continue to grow our modern factories to create new jobs,” said United States Senator Chuck Schumer.