Renderings don’t always paint a pretty picture

Architectural drawings key to a project's image

New York /
Aug.August 27, 2013 09:22 AM

Developers can use architectural renderings as a powerful tool to drum up support and enthusiasm for a project, as in the case of Extell Development’s One57. But renderings can also be an effective weapon to attack projects, as in the case of Vornado Realty Trust’s stillborn 15 Penn Plaza.

An early rendering of One57, for example, “brilliantly uses light to make the building disappear as it goes up,” said Andrew Dolkart, the director of Columbia University’s historic preservation program. Dolkart is a staunch opponent of the building who once described the ultraluxury Extell tower as the city’s most hated building, but he admitted the rendering was impressive.

“It’s like it’s dissolving into the sky, and I don’t really see the hideous colors,” he told the New York Times, describing the multiple shades of blue that will extend up the face of the building.

A spokesperson for Extell Development said in a statement to the Times that the rendering accurately represented the building’s “massing” and “tonality.”

“I would say your point of view is key,” said Craig Copeland, a principal at Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects. “A rendering is just a tool to amplify discussion.”

But sometimes renderings can work against developers. When Vornado Realty Trust was looking to build 15 Penn Plaza, near the Empire State Building three years ago, renderings from opponents of the project surfaced that showed the silhouette of the Empire State Building and the proposed building seen from a faraway graveyard.

In a 2010 Council hearing attended by the Times, David Greenbaum, Vornado’s New York president, said he was “somewhat troubled by the grossly misleading renderings that have been delivered to the press.” Although it did win Council approval, the 15 Penn project was eventually shelved, the Times said. [NYT]Hiten Samtani


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Vornado's Steve Roth and 220 Central Park South (Credit: Getty Images, iStock)
Free and clear: Vornado pays off debt at 220 CPS
Free and clear: Vornado pays off debt at 220 CPS
Vornado chairman and CEO Steven Roth, and 608 Fifth Avenue (Credit: Getty Images)
“Negative surprises”: Vornado execs talk retail struggles on Q2 earnings call
“Negative surprises”: Vornado execs talk retail struggles on Q2 earnings call
Steven Roth, CEO of Vornado and 640 Fifth Avenue (Credit: Getty Images and Vornado Realty Trust)
Bank of China issues $500M to Vornado in refi of 640 Fifth Avenue
Bank of China issues $500M to Vornado in refi of 640 Fifth Avenue
Extell's Gary Barnett and One57 (Getty)
One57 is 90% sold: Extell announces Q1 sales
One57 is 90% sold: Extell announces Q1 sales
Vornado’s Steven Roth and One Park Avenue (Getty, Vornado)
Here’s what tenants are paying at One Park Ave
Here’s what tenants are paying at One Park Ave
Extell sells One57 sponsor unit for $17M
Extell sells One57 sponsor unit for $17M
Extell sells One57 sponsor unit for $17M
Photo illustration of Vornado CEO Steven Roth and Hotel Pennsylvania at 401 Seventh Avenue (Getty, iStock, Vornado)
“Inevitable”: Vornado will demolish Hotel Pennsylvania
“Inevitable”: Vornado will demolish Hotel Pennsylvania
Unit 55B of Central Park South and Steve Roth of Vornado Realty Trust. (Compass, Vornado, Getty)
220 Central Park South’s first resale in the works
220 Central Park South’s first resale in the works
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...