Itching for an icon: Vornado channels Marilyn Monroe with 2 Penn Plaza design

Design for REIT's new office property inspired by actress' famous wardrobe malfunction

TRD New York /
May.May 04, 2016 02:30 PM

As Marilyn learned, no skirt is safe over a blustery subway grate. Not even, it turns out, when it’s on a building.

Vornado Realty Trust is giving Two Penn Plaza a new glassy facade, one that channels one of the most well-known scenes in movie history: Marilyn Monroe “trying” to tame her white dress over a subway grate in “The Seven Year Itch.” The 48-year-old building’s new skin, designed by Bjarke Ingels Group, will sport a floor-to-ceiling glass curtain wall, and the “massive undulating canopy” will rise 85 feet high and extend out 65 feet in some places, David Greenbaum, president of Vornado’s New York division, said during the company’s first-quarter earnings call Tuesday.

A representative for BIG on Wednesday declined to comment on the project.

Renderings of Two Penn Plaza’s new look leaked in March, and a majority of reports compared the design to waves. (The Real Deal eluded to Monroe in its description). Vornado and BIG have largely kept mum about the project, but Greenbaum said on Tuesday that the skirt will serve as a “grand entrance” to the office building, as well as Penn Station and Madison Square Garden. The hope, it seems, is that those passing through will have a similar reaction as Monroe’s, exclaiming “Isn’t it delicious?”

Related Articles

Vornado's Steve Roth and 220 Central Park South (Credit: Getty Images, iStock)

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

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

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Apple CEO Tim Cook with a rendering of the Farley development (Credit: Getty Images, SOM iStock)

Facebook facing off with Apple over space in Vornado’s Farley Building conversion

220 Central Park South and Michael Cantanucci (Credit: Getty Images and Google Maps)

Car dealer drops $38M for condo at 220 CPS

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and a rendering of the Farley Post Office building redevelopment (Credit: Getty Images, SOM)

Facebook in talks for massive lease at Vornado’s Farley Building

Vornado president Michael Franco and 512 West 22nd Street (Credit: VNO)

WarnerMedia to anchor Vornado’s West Chelsea spec office

From left: 220 Park Avenue South, 15 Central Park West, 520 Park Avenue, 35 Hudson Yards, Sting, Juan Beckmann Vidal, Daniel Och, Bob Diamond, and Stephen Ross (Credit: Getty Images, Wikipedia, StreeEasy, and Google Maps)

Serial buyers trade “old” condos for new on Billionaires’ Row