George Janes met with the City Club Urban Design Committee this morning to discuss the reasons for the proliferation of super tall buildings and what might help to control them. Slides of his presentation are attached (6.9 MB pdf), and we welcome further comments.
2 thoughts on “Presentation to the Urban Design Committee”
George Janes’ presentation clearly shows how individual projects use and misuse zoning sometimes in the interests of urban design and sometimes in the interests of the market. The Municipal Art Society, under the heading Accidental Skyline, has been following the emergence of very tall buildings first along 57 Street, just south of Central Park, and now elsewhere in the city. See: https://www.mas.org/ourwork/accidental-skyline/ It has also published an updated Accidental Skyline report in October 2017: https://www.mas.org/pdf/accidental-skyline-report-10-15-2017-web.pdf
Both George Janes and MAS identify loopholes in the zoning and suggest changes that would make our city’s urban design more predictable.
When is a building to tall? Perhaps when it is in the wrong place — which is sometimes the definition of a flower versus a weed. Towers clustered in Lower Manhattan or Downtown Brooklyn, rooted in a sustaining transit system and marking a center of activity, lend meaning to our city’s urban design. Do Hugh Ferris’ images of a city inform us? See: http://www.bing.com/images/search?view=detailV2&ccid=tOYWrz38&id=C10A61D47AE528691A11ED75E8B9424DB3A85036&thid=OIP.tOYWrz38bYM2o4cPL3iEmQHaKB&mediaurl=http%3a%2f%2fwww.johncoulthart.com%2ffeuilleton%2fwp-content%2fuploads%2f2013%2f10%2fferriss07.jpg&exph=460&expw=340&q=hugh+ferris&simid=607998235346142474&selectedIndex=112&ajaxhist=0
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