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Upper East Side low-rise buildings will give way to 18-story tower

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The building will offer 27 apartments and will replace a walk-up where a small pharmacy has operated for almost 90 years


The Upper East Side will gain a new 18-story tower at 1639-41 First Avenue that will replace a four-story walk-up where a small pharmacy has been in business for almost 90 years. While much of the project remains a mystery, DNAinfo reports that the building will be transformed into 199-foot mixed-use site with 27 apartments and 2,000 square feet of commercial space.

Documents filed with the city’s Department of Buildings (DOB) aren’t very telling. The redevelopment isn’t pegged to any specific architect and the developer is simply named “First Avenue LLC.” It doesn’t even reveal if the apartments will be offered as co-ops or condos. Nevertheless, the documents do disclose how the apartments will be spread out. Floors three through 12 will consists of two apartments each while just one apartment will occupy each floor from 13 up to 18.

Capitol Chemists has operated out of the building for close to a century and it remains unclear what stands for the future of the small shop. When contacted by DNAinfo, an employee stated that the owner was unaware of the development plans. Hopefully the pharmacy can occupy a space within the new development and will not go the route of many small businesses that were forced to shutter.