The broken crane at Extell Development’s One57 development, dangling about 1,000 feet above West 57th Street, is likely to remain an enduring image of Hurricane Sandy, which has left the East Coast battered. But the more immediate concern is getting the crane down from its perch — atop the under-construction luxury condominium that the New York Times billed as a “billionaires club.”
During an 11 a.m. press conference, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said that the New York City Department of Buildings has determined that the crane is currently stable. He said the there would be no attempt to secure the crane until winds die down, and that it would be up to the contracting company to figure out how to get another crane 90 stories above street level.
That’s because the key to rescuing the broken crane might just be another crane. How long that might take is not yet known.
Pinnacle Industries is the operator of the crane and the Department of Buildings has on-record complaints of problems with the crane. Curbed reported that there was an August stop-work order for a defective hoist and hydraulic leaks. A spokesperson for construction manager Bovis Lend Lease told the Times that the crane was last inspected on Friday.
Donald Trump has tweeted his own thoughts about the crane collapse. “I saw from my window just before accident that the crane was not properly anchored for the storm,” he posted this morning. Yesterday, he tweeted, “All weights are on crane’s wrong side – very precarious below, move out!”
As reported yesterday, in the wake of the accident, Extell chief Gary Barnett told the New York Observer, “We’re doing everything we can, and hopefully no one is going to get hurt.” –Zachary Kussin