watch out for the Purple People Eaters
I commented on the open eastern views when I hit the Manhattan loft at 542 LaGuardia Place that took 10 days to fins a contract and 7 weeks to close (March 15, 542 LaGuardia Place loft zooms through market, with a very expensive roof deck). I probably should have realized this at the time, but the point that these “unobstructed views into the middle of the super block with NYU housing to the east” are at risk has been brought home this week, when NYU unveiled it latest plans for development.
Of course, these are just plans, that require some government waivers, and the locals are already up in arms. So it may never be done. Curbed had the report with the new plans yesterday, after they visited the NYU ‘open house’ at 532 LaGuardia Place with 3-D mock-ups of the proposal. Suffice it to say that those (now) “unobstructed views to the east” from 542 LaGuardia Place may have to contend with the smaller of the two “boomerang” buildings directly across LaGuardia Place to the east. It is possible that some light and a sliver of view will survive, given the angles, but maybe not. (See the ‘bird’s eye view’ on page 13 of the pdf of the NYU proposal to the Community Board for the easiest-to-read schematic.)
I gather than these boomerang buildings have long been a feature of NYU’s plans, and that the new element from prior plans is that the proposed 40-story hotel+residence on the next block south on LaGuardia Place has been replaced with a shorter tower on Mercer Street and some other ‘bulk’ elsewhere. I assume that the buyers of loft #5B at 542 LaGuardia Place have been on top of this; at least, I hope so.
This Villager article from before the big roll-out walks through the old and new plans, mostly from the perspective of where the open spaces are and would be. For any residents of the block with 542 LaGuardia Place, the good news may be that the boomerang buildings are not in the first phase of construction. Any part of a ‘plan’ that does not start for 15 years is a plan that subsequent events may overtake, I suspect.
My point is that any discussion of views (such as mine about #5B at 542 LaGuardia Place) needs to take into account future development possibilities (recall that I figured that the east-facing roof deck added roughly $725,000 in value to #5B). In the case of NYU and the super-blocks, relevant plans have been under public consideration for some time now. While I overlooked those plans in talking about that loft, no seller or buyer should have. These plans are so massive, so public, and so controversial, not a lot of “diligence” should have been required to ‘discover’ them; for other lofts for which light and views are premium items, the necessary diligence may be more intense but no less important.
© Sandy Mattingly 2011