People love the Astor Place Cube, but a Cube-shaped food stand? A black steel box that looks near identical to the beloved Tony Rosenthal sculpture arrived at Astor Place yesterday, stoking predictions about its purpose that EV Grieve says ran the gamut from a CorTen steel LinkNYC kiosk to a Game of Thrones-winds winter bus shelter. But a new press release puts an end to those more imaginative claims, clarifying that the imposing Alamo wannabe is merely the home to new food kiosk Astor Plate. (Yes, they went there.)
Per the press release, cited by EVG:
Coming soon, Astor Plate! A new food and beverage kiosk created by Perry Mallas serving healthy Mediterranean comfort food, coffee and beverages, all organic and locally sourced wherever possible. Astor Plate is also bringing MUD Coffee back to Astor Place.
To design and create the kiosk Perry has collaborated with the same creative team at Patrick Nash Design that designed and built Flatiron Green and Benvenuto Café. Visually, the kiosk references the neighborhood’s artistic character and reflects the design profile of Tony Rosenthal’s iconic Alamo sculpture, which turns 50 this year. The raw steel finishes and bold geometric forms of Astor Plate will create a natural and inviting ambiance, appropriate for this quintessentially urban environment.
The arrival of the kiosk is the bow on the larger Astor Place redevelopment package. The city’s Department of Design and Construction unveiled the public plaza’s revamp in November 2016 after three years in the works. A complete redesign by WXY Architecture, Piet Oudolf, Quennell Rothschild & Partners, and Tillett Lighting Design Associates brought the area new plantings, wider walkways, imaginative benches and new bike racks. Tony Rosenthal’s The Alamo was also rehabbed at a cost of $180,000.
Sadly, the MUD truck that used to post up next the the 6 entrance has retired. But Astor Plate—or, uh, the Starbucks—is there to pick up the slack. The kiosk is expected to open in March.