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Essex Crossing’s 242 Broome Street gives shape to a new Lower East Side enclave

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The 14-story building is just a day away from topping out

Photos by Max Touhey

Among the first few buildings of Lower East Side megaproject Essex Crossing that will be complete, 242 Broome Street is now just a day away from topping out. This milestone in the building’s development comes just over six months after sales got underway on what will be the megaproject’s (located on the Seward Park Urban Renewal Area) first completed condo building.

Curbed had a chance to tour this 14-story structure a little over a week ago as construction workers continued unabated to ensure that the project remains on track to open by next year.

The first five floors of the building were already clad in their shiny, silvery facade at the time of our tour. Created with anodized aluminum, the sunlight reflected off the surface creates a champagne-like coloring for the exterior. The lead architect on the project, Dana Getman, an associate principal at SHoP Architects, said the facade was a modern interpretation of tenement buildings in the surrounding area, and that 242 Broome’s facade served as a transition of sorts between those buildings and the Essex Crossing megaproject.

Four of the first five floors will serve as the retail and commercial portion of the building with 15,000 square feet of space set aside for an as-yet-to-be-named cultural facility (in a separate building adjoined to the main structure). The cultural center (where plans once called for an Andy Warhol Museum) will be separated from the main structure by what the architects call “Soho Stairs”—a long, vertical, continuous flight of stairs that can be used to access the different floors of the institution.

The model in the sales office gives a sense of the cultural center and the condo side by side.

An additional 17,000 square feet will be taken up by a bowling and entertainment venue called Splitsville, to be located in the basement of the condo building.

Apartments at 242 Broome start on the fifth floor, with each floor featuring between three and six apartments. Three apartments on the sixth floor will have private terraces. The building’s only other apartments with outdoor space are its three penthouses, which will also come private terraces.

The building takes on a twisting shape above the five-story base, and the torquing floors allow for great light and better views from each of the apartments, Getman told Curbed. The condo’s 55 apartments come in one, two, and three-bedroom variants, and the building also has 11 affordable units that will be spread out throughout the building.

The views from some of higher floors at 242 Broome.

The condo interiors are being designed by DXA Studio, who planned open-concept living spaces; kitchens with custom walnut cabinetry, Calacatta marble countertops, backsplashes and and island; and wide-plank oak flooring. In addition, all apartments here will come with 10-foot ceilings, and windows that are nearly floor-to-ceiling.

The amenity package is relatively subdued in comparison to some of the other high-profile condo developments in the city, but then again the priciest apartment here will reportedly ask $7 million—the lack of a lap pool or hammam makes more sense with that in mind.

Among the amenities the condo will offer are a fitness center, a children’s playroom, an entertainment lounge with a kitchen, and a landscaped rooftop. Outside of the condo, residents will be in close proximity to all that Essex Crossing has to offer including the new home for Essex Crossing Market, the Market Line, a Trader Joe’s, and a Regal Cinemas outpost.

The outdoor terrace on the sixth floor.

242 Broome Street will be among four buildings to see completion in 2018 as part of the Essex Crossing megaproject. The others are the Handel and SHoP-designed 195-unit rental building with 98 affordable apartments on site 2. That will be located at 115 Delancey Street, and will also serve as the main entrance to the Market Line. The second will be the rental designed by Beyer Blinder Belle on site 5 (a.k.a 145 Clinton Street) where half of the units will be affordable, and the third is a fully-affordable senior building on site 6, designed by Dattner Architects.

Developed by Delancey Street Associates, the $1 billion Essex Crossing megaproject is comprised of nine sites that are spread out over six acres. 242 Broome Street is part of the first phase of development, and developers are still hammering out the details of what’s to come in phases two and three.