clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

An Architecture Critic's Five Best Zingers on Midtown's One57

New, 46 comments

It was only a matter of time before the archicritical hammer fell on 57th Street, where many architecturally?interesting buildings are currently stretching toward the skyline. Today, New York's Justin Davidson offers his thoughts on One57, and, as is our habit, we've highlighted the best zingers. Other nearby towers?like Rafael Vinoly's 432 Park Avenue?come in for criticism, too?Davidson calls 432 Park "a genuine clunker" and "an unrelenting concrete grid of ten-by-ten-foot openings like so many stacked cubbyhole units." Davidson wonders, "shouldn't architects who reach for physical heights be extending themselves creatively, too?" We'd say yes, but it might mean we'd miss out on all the best architecture critic commentary. Like these One57 bon mots:

1) "Along 57th Street, lanky residential skyscrapers will soon be lining up for Central Park views like an NBA team craning to peer at a new iPhone."

2) "It's a luxury object for people who see the city as their private snow globe."

3) "But a building doesn't liquefy just because computer renderings promise that it will. In the physical world—the one where Hurricane Sandy crippled a crane that dangled perilously for months—One57 looks like a stolid arrangement of beveled blocks, upholstered in silk and satin stripes."

4) "For one thing, 57th Street is not actually getting much denser. Instead, the skyline is filling up with sparsely populated habitats for oligarchs who, if they live there at all, roam across their parquet tundra, hollering for their mates."

5) "It's hard to imagine how high the ceilings would have to be, how unusably glossy the kitchen, or how noiseless the air conditioning to make an apartment here feel like a good deal. At these financial altitudes, even an ordinary structural element feels like a ripoff."
· Giants in Our Midst [NYM]
· One57 coverage [Curbed]

432 Park Avenue

432 Park Avenue, New York, NY Visit Website