The market for high-end penthouses and ultra-luxury apartments in New York City is booming, and developers are once again building expensive new units after a post-recession slump.
Nowhere is the rise of development more striking than on 57th Street, where six new luxury high rises are under construction, casting long shadows over Central Park and earning the street the nickname “Billionaires’ Row.”
One57 already stands at 1,005 feet, making it New York’s new tallest residential tower. Soon, that title will be surpassed by 432 Park, which will top out at 1,396 feet, and then Nordstrom Tower, which will reportedly rise 1,775 feet in the air when it’s completed in several years.
And that’s just a sampling of the building spree on 57th Street.
Michael Gross, author of of “House of Outrageous Fortune” and “740 Park: The Story of the World’s Richest Apartment Building,” told Business Insider that these shiny new skyscrapers are “bizarre throwbacks” and “effectively hotels for foreign money.”
“I suspect they will be a ‘flash in the pan,'” Gross said. “The motivation to build them doesn’t seem to be to build homes for New Yorkers, but to attract investment capital without regard to what sort of homes they will be.”
Indeed, many of the new units will be bought as investments, rented out, and flipped for a profit. But whether the glossy highrises of “Billionaires’ Row” are a passing fad or mainstay for New York’s elite, they are quickly changing the face of the city.
The street will soon be home to six new residential buildings that will change the face of New York's skyline due to their sheer height.
The artist's renderings below (courtesy of New York YIMBY) show what Manhattan's skyline will look like in 2020. The buildings outlined in red are all new.
Sceptics say the new buildings will block views and cast long shadows across Central Park. But that hasn't slowed development at all. The top rendering shows the park today; the bottom shows what it will look like when construction is finished (courtesy of the Municipal Art Society of New York).
How will 57th Street change? Let's start on the east end, at 252 E. 57th St. between 2nd and 3rd Avenues. Construction on a 59-story condo building at this location started in 2013, and is expected to be done by 2016. This is how the lot looked back in 2008, when it was home to two schools.
Today, the space is home to a street-level Whole Foods and a revamped school space, which will serve as the base of the condo tower and are currently open.
When it's finished, the tower will rise 700 feet in the air, and will have 93 condos and 173 rental units, as well as a swimming pool, dining room, and billiards room. The total cost of the development is expected to reach $US1 billion. The initial renderings showed a slender, tapered glass residence...
But the end result will likely be much more simple. These boxy building designs by SLCE were sent to the New York Building Commission.
Moving west, 432 Park, on Park Avenue between 56th and 57th Streets, has been under construction since 2012, and should be completed in 2015. This is what the site looked like back in 2008. The super-tall condo was designed by Rafael Viñoly, and has been getting a ton of buzz.
When it's complete, 432 Park will be tallest residential tower in the western hemisphere, at 96 stories high and 1,396 feet tall (until it's surpassed by a future tower). The construction, pictured here in July 2014, already rises well above its surroundings.
The skyscraper will eventually have 30,000 square feet of amenities and 125 residential units with price tags ranging from $US7 million to $US95 million.
Windows at 432 Park will be huge, at 10 x 10 feet, and each apartment will have 12-foot ceilings, private elevators, eat-in kitchens, and huge master bedrooms.
432 Park will offer residents a ton of amenities, including a restaurant, outdoor terrace, gym, spa, game room, and pool.
111 West 57th St. will be a few blocks west of 432 Park. The building's developer bought the land leases, as well as 45,000 square feet of air rights and a neighbouring property, for $US131.5 million in 2013. This is what the lot looked like in 2008.
Construction began back in February, and so far, not a lot of progress has been made, as you can see in a current photo. The 60-foot-wide structure is expected to stand 100 feet taller than the Empire State Building, and will contain a hotel as well as condos.
Here's a rendering of the completed building. The tower will have three high-speed elevators and a hotel inside, as well as 45 luxury apartments.
Above the hotel, each floor of 111 West 57th St. will be a single 5,000-square-foot apartment with views of Central Park. The 1,350-foot tower will dominate its surroundings.
Perhaps the most talked-about building rising on 57th Street is One57. The mega-luxury condo, which was designed by Christian de Portzamparc and is being developed by Extell, has been in the works since 2009 (as pictured below).
The building is almost complete, and residents started moving in this summer. Standing 1,005 feet tall, One57 is currently New York's tallest residential tower.
2 penthouse apartments at One57 each sold for a staggering $US90 million back in 2012. The views should be spectacular.
Further west, Nordstrom Tower will soon rise at 225 W. 57th Street. (This photo shows what the space looks like in 2008.) One of the most enigmatic construction projects on Billionaire's Row, it's rumoured that Nordstrom Tower will top out at 1,775 feet.
Nordstrom Tower is expected to be the tallest residential building in the world, surpassing 432 Park. The developers behind the project have not confirmed any details, even after design plans leaked this summer.
Standing apart from the other skyscrapers on Billionaires' Row, 625 W. 57th Street on the far west side will be shorter and more moderately priced than its neighbours. The building is currently under construction between 11th and 12th Avenues, and will contain rentals -- not pricey condos.
Here's what the site looks like today. 20% of apartments in the building will be set aside as affordable housing. The rest will be market rate.
The pyramid-shaped building, which is being developed by the Durst Organisation and was designed by the Bjarke Ingels Group, will have eco-friendly water, heating, and cooling systems.
NOW WATCH: Executive Life videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.