The development team behind the revamp of the landmark Waldorf-Astoria Hotel has finally set a date for construction to begin—or, at least, they’ve confirmed that it’s due to kick off in December. The team announced that Aecom Tishman—which has worked on major construction projects like the Barclays Center and One Manhattan West—will lead the renovation of the storied hotel as it transforms into a hotel-condo hybrid.
One element of that has finally been clarified is exactly how many hotel rooms will be included in the revamp; Anbang has confirmed that there will be just 350, a steep drop from the Waldorf’s original 1,413—and from the proposed 800 that was once speculated as a final number.
According to the New York Post, the decrease in rooms is a bone of contention between Anbang and Hilton, the hotel’s operator; they’re concerned that having fewer rooms “will weaken the chain of nearly 30 Waldorf-branded properties that Hilton operates worldwide.”
But construction will move forward anyway, with the rest of the renovated hotel giving way to 350 condos, along with renovated ballrooms and public-facing spaces.
The team behind the conversion—including Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill, which was tapped to envision a new Waldorf—received approval from the Landmarks Preservation Commission this spring, not long after the 85-year-old hotel closed its doors. Small strides have been made toward getting things underway since. Some of the hotel’s historic elements, including the clock tower that sat in its lobby, have already been removed to better facilitate construction.