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December 9, 2019

520 Park Avenue Tops The Wall Street Journal's "Best Architecture of 2019"

520 Park Avenue Tops The Wall Street Journal's "Best Architecture of 2019"

Robert A.M. Stern Architects' 520 Park Avenue headed the list of seven projects in Michael Lewis's "The Best Architecture of 2019" in the December 9, 2019, Wall Street Journal.

"So much attention has been lavished on "Billionaires' Row"—that clutch of residential towers now sprouting to the south of Central Park that includes a few 1,000-plus-foot prodigies—that a building as subtle as Robert A.M. Stern Architects' 520 Park Avenue easily goes unnoticed," wrote Prof. Lewis. "Unlike them, this 54-story apartment tower is an exceptionally well-mannered building that derives its forms from the gracious apartments of the prewar era, with their limestone cladding, bronze trim, and vaulted lobbies. This is the New York vernacular, and for RAMSA it is not a straitjacket but a springboard."

520 Park Avenue provides 35 apartments—30 floor-through simplexes and five duplexes—in a 780-foot-high campanile that takes its place in a streetscape of distinguished immediate neighbors, including the Grolier Club (Bertram Goodhue, 1917) and Christ Church (Cram & Ferguson, 1931), and on the skyline, including nearby romantic towers from the 1920s such as the Ritz Tower (Emery Roth and Carrère & Hastings, 1925), the Sherry-Netherland (Schultze & Weaver with Buchman & Kahn, 1927), and the Pierre (Schultze & Weaver, 1928).

520 Park Avenue is entirely clad in limestone. Changes in the fenestration patterns on each facade express the different apartment plans, with stone detailing providing additional articulation. Seven residences above the 39th floor feature generous north-facing balconies overlooking preserved views of Central Park and the Upper East Side Historic District, and a copper-roofed pavilion carried on limestone columns partially shelters an expansive 54th-floor terrace. The tower is crowned by four corner chimneys framing pilasters and aedicules.

520 Park Avenue was developed by Zeckendorf Development. Robert A.M. Stern, Paul Whalen, and Michael Jones led the design team at Robert A.M. Stern Architects. SLCE Architects of New York served as architect-of-record.


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