Developer Sharif El-Gamal inspired a national controversy when in 2010 he proposed plans to build a 15-story Islamic center just blocks away from Ground Zero in downtown Manhattan.
Protesters dubbed the planned Islamic community the “Ground Zero Mosque” and said that the construction would be a dishonor to all those who perished at the World Trade Center on 9/11.
The plan, officially called the Park51 Islamic Cultural Center, was eventually tabled amid a lack of financing.
But now El-Gamal’s Soho Properties has a new proposal for the site: a 665-foot luxury condo tower named for its address, 45 Park Place.
The tower was designed by SOMA Architects’ Michel Abboud with Ismael Leyva Architects.
Abboud and El-Gamal worked together on the original design for the Islamic center.
“I have worked with Michel for almost a decade to conceive the very best plan for this site, and my confidence is unwavering,” El-Gamal said in a press release announcing the new proposal. “Michel’s talent is staggering, and I am extremely proud to continue to work with him to realise the exquisite design in the form of a perfect glass and steel structure.”
The skyscraper, as proposed, will have 70 stories of condos.
About halfway up the tower, condos will become full-floor units with their own private elevators, Abboud told Bloomberg. They will have 12-foot windows with panoramic views of the Hudson River and Manhattan.
There will also be two duplex penthouses at the top of the tower.
Italian architect Piero Lissoni will design the condo interiors and amenities, while Jean Nouvel will work on a museum and green space next door. Abboud said that amenities will potentially include a 50-foot swimming pool and a luxury concierge service.
Construction is expected to begin by the end of the year, with occupancy tentatively scheduled for 2017.
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