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Architect Selected for Park Avenue's Drake Hotel Replacement

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The hiring of an architect usually doesn't make waves in the mainstream media unless a name like Frank Gehry is involved, but the site of the former Drake Hotel is no ordinary project. The classic building at Park Avenue and 56th Street was controversially demolished by developer Harry Macklowe to make way for a modern glassy tower of some sort, but those plans were derailed by Macklowe's financial implosion. The site has languished for years despite being one of the most valuable pieces of land in the world, but now things are back on track following a bailout by the CIM Group. Macklowe is still involved in the Drake site, and the Wall Street Journal reports that the 73-year-old has recruited Rafael Viñoly (of New Domino fame) to design the new tower, which will likely be 70 stories tall and feature both condos and a hotel. Macklowe reportedly has been showing off a model of the tower to invited guests at his office. The design remains a mystery to us, but we're guessing it's going to look a lot different from the old Drake, pictured below for posterity's sake.

· Tower Dreams [WSJ]
· Drake Hotel coverage [Curbed]