When we got a first peek of the molded metal panels planned for avant-garde architect Neil Denari's HL23 in West Chelsea we were warned by the NMDA crew that the mock-ups weren't a true visual representation of what would rise above the High Line. Now there is glass as well as flashy sheets of stainless going up at West 23rd Street and close inspection shows some subtle changes. In the mock-up each panel had the same swoopy indent at dead center, but now the panels are varied, with the indents off-set and moving across the panels, giving the east face a jolt of energy. The inset side windows appear pretty much the same, but look like they've been set a bit deeper into the metal facade. One thing we hadn't paid much attention to before is how intimately the lordly HL23 meets the High Line down below.
Old maps and photos of the High Line show a little spur on the west side of the tracks running from West 21st Street up to and just beyond West 23rd Street, ending right at the front door of HL23. Some plans for Phase II of the elevated park, set to open about one year from now, show a glassed-in elevator rising to meet that spur on the sidewalk where HL23, the High Line and West 23rd Street come together. Up above the rails a big tilted expanse of fritted glass looms over what is designed to be a major entry point to the High Line. That could make life interesting for the folks who take up residence in the full floor condos down low. And, depending on what goes on inside HL23, it could be a load of fun for High Liners, too.
And what to make of the business side of the building? HL23 isn't being built just for our gawking, after all. StreetEasy reports four units in contract, and get a load of this. A new listing for an $18 million penthouse triplex recently popped up on the market. An observant Curbed tipster writes:
I've been watching 515 W 23rd since it broke ground... and now it seems like the builder decided to totally re-arrange the top 3 floors and create a Triplex Penthouse? for just $18,000,000. Originally the plans called for a duplex penthouse only, and a full-floor residence below that one. Wonder why they decided to go this route instead of sticking with their original plan?Because these days luxury is out but super luxury is in! Plus, there's still time to separate/divide as buyers see fit. Holler at it, Kanye.
· HL23 [Official Site]
· Listing: 515 West 23rd Street [BHS]
· HL23 coverage [Curbed]