Maki on a roll
82-year-old Pritzker winner conjures up a volumetric surprise for Astor Place
A rendering of the new building set to rise at 51 Astor Place
From the September issue: For better or for worse, there are few places in Manhattan that have changed, or are changing, more radically than Astor Place.
A mere 10 years ago, this intersection of Saint Marks Place and the Bowery was, architecturally speaking, a fairly quiet place that had not seen any noteworthy activity in over a generation.
Change came in 2005 with Gwathmey Siegel’s winsome and silvery residential tower at 445 Lafayette Street, as well as, more recently, the Cooper Union academic building designed by Thom Mayne of the Los Angeles-based firm Morphosis.
There’s also the Cooper Square Hotel by Carlos Zapata Studio, which was built around an old tenement building and debuted in late 2008. But all of that is small beer compared with what is about to rise in the very center of the area. Coming soon is a 13-story office building at 51 Astor Place, designed by Fumihiko Maki, winner of the Pritzker Prize, architecture’s highest honor, and developed by Edward Minskoff. [more]