The celebrated Swiss architecture firm Herzog and de Meuron made a huge splash in New York with Ian Schrager's Noho Coke bottle at 40 Bond, but for their second act, Curbed has learned that those wily Europeans have planned something much, much bigger. Developer Izak Senbahar's Alexico company planned on building a Costas Kondylis-designed 58-story, 140-unit tower at 56 Leonard Street, on land bought from the New York Law School. NYLS is using the money to finance a new library building on the same block. But according to the DOB website, the Kondylis plan was disapproved in June, and that's where Herzog and de Meuron come in.
The 56 Leonard Street/Law Library stories have been hot topics on the Wired New York boards, and one user pointed out that the LowerManhattan.info site says that a 57-story tower is currently under construction at 56 Leonard. In comes a Curbed source with firsthand information of the project, who confirms the height, while adding that the building will be around 410,000 square feet. Kondylis' plan called for 480,000sf. Our source says Kondylis is off the project, and the new architects are, drumroll, Herzog and de Meuron.
So what are they up to? Oh, just a skyscraper made up of stacked glass cubes. There will be only two units per floor, and Corcoran Sunshine will market the project. Louise Sunshine, who put the Sunshine in Corcoran Sunshine, now works as the development director for Alexico, so there's the connection. Alexico is also developing the Remy in Chelsea, which also happens to be made of stacked glass cubes in a design by?wouldn't you know it?Costas Kondylis. But our source has seen the model for 56 Leonard Street, and it bares only "a very small likeness" to the Remy, and "looks nothing like" Santiago Calatrava's glass boxes at 80 South Street. Oh, did we mention this tower is going up completely as-of-right? Brace yourself, Tribeca, because the Swiss are coming.
· 56 Leonard Street [LowerManhattan.info]