We didn't take developer Quadriad Realty Partners' proposal to build four apartment towers way taller than anything else Washington Heights has seen too seriously, but the company president's pit stop at the Manhattan Times has us starting to believe. If not in the four-tower plan (which would include 454 market-rate apartments and 198 reserved for affordable housing), then in Quadriad's alternate two-tower idea, which would result in 22-story and 28-story buildings staring each other down across Broadway at 190th Street. Developers have tried to build big in the upper reaches of Manhattan before, so what makes this situation different? This time around, the suits say they have the money to get it done.
Quadriad says they have the financing in place to proceed with either plan, but they want the supersized version. The company hopes that the promise of affordable housing and a rehabilitated Gorman Park will entice officials into granting the zoning variances needed for the Quariad quadruplets, but it might be an uphill climb. The affordable housing would still price out most locals because it would be for households earning 60 percent to 180 percent of the city's median income, and WaHI household incomes tend to be lower. The two-tower plan would be as-of-right and all market-rate, and here's how that version (in orange) stacks up to the foursome. The site has good subway access, but can Washington Heights handle 450 fancy new apartments?