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Jewish Theological Seminary’s Morningside Heights campus will spring a 32-story condo

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The Seminary sold some land on their campus to Savanna last year

Photo via The Jewish Theological Seminary Facebook page.

A massive new condo tower is set to rise on land that was once owned by the Jewish Theological Seminary in Morningside Heights. Almost a year ago, development firm Savanna inked a deal with the Seminary that would allow the former to develop part of the campus into a residential building.

Savanna has now filed plans for what will be a 32-story tower with 170 apartments set to rise at 543 West 122nd Street, which appears to be right next to the Seminary’s existing library (though Savanna declined to comment on this).

They’re calling it Vandewater, after the original name of Morningside Heights: Vandewater Heights. That name in turn was derived from the family who owned the land in the 17th century (incidentally a man named Jacobus van de Water was the mayor of New Amsterdam—the dutch settlement in southern Manhattan during the 17th century).

Vandewater will feature one, two, three, and four-bedroom condos and also come with 24,000 square feet of amenities, which include a fitness center courtesy The Wright Fit. INC Architecture & Design have been signed on to do the exterior and interiors, and Michael Van Valkenburgh has been brought on to do the landscape.

Savanna declined to provide further details on the project so it’s not yet known when construction will get underway. Earlier this month, The Real Deal reported that Savanna had submitted an application to see if there was enough interest for this type of development. It seems like they got the answer they wanted, but once again Savanna declined to comment on the matter.

What we do know however is that the funds from the sale of this land to Savanna will go towards building a new performing arts space, library and residence hall for the Seminary, to be designed by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien.

This new condo will be located just a few blocks south of Columbia University’s Manhattanville Campus, most of which is currently under construction. The Renzo Piano-designed science center was the first to wrap construction there, and a few others will follow in the coming years. Savanna’s development is not part of the newly created Morningside Heights historic district.