Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Midtown, 57th Street Between Sixth and Seventh Avenues

Mary Sargent © 2008 …… .. click to enlarge

This is a street level view of The Metropolitan Tower, the tall reflective building from last night's photo. As we were walking toward it, it looked as if there were a giant shimmery mural on the side of the building. If you're at all interested in architecture, you must read Carter B. Horsley's article on this building. He's quite enthusiastic and uses words to describe it like ferocious, belligerent and narrow-focused. But in a good way. Meanwhile, the AIA Guide sniffs that it is a "gross and insensitive intrusion." As for me, just slap some glass on it and I'll like it.

Mary Sargent © 2008 …… .. click to enlarge

Here's another view showing the sharp edge of the triangular tower that rises above the rectangular base. It's cozying up next to the Carnegie Hall Tower, built around the same time. The Metropolitan Tower was built in 1987 and the Carnegie Hall Tower 1986-1990. Grossly insensitive? They seem happy enough together to me. You decide.

See map.


JerryNJ said...


This picture here does not fully encompass what the builders of both those towers had to contend with. RTR rests very awkwardly between both of these gargantuan bullies by only 20 feet!

Incidental to the flanking bullies is the story of Faith Stewart-Gordon's fight not to sell the restaurant to the real bullies themselves: Harry Maklowe & Rockrose Associates.

Great blog of yours. I hope you don't mind me visiting.


Mary Sargent said...

Funnily enough, in the article I linked to by Carter Horsely, he has this to say about the owner of The Russian Tea Room: Before any final assessment can be made, it should be noted that the real villain, if there is one, was Faith Stewart-Gordon, the proprietress of the Russian Tea Room, which occupies a low-rise building stuck between the Metropolitan and Carnegie Hall towers.

Well, somebody's gotta stand up for those bullies.

Thanks for your comment. I LOVE you visiting.

JerryNJ said...

What would you expect to hear from a real estate reporter who worked for the New York Times and describes himself as an "urbanist".

Horsley fails to evaluate the creativity of the architects for both flanking structures.

I have a feeling that he knows the developers personally.

Thanks for having me over.