The Apthorp Penthouse Additions Not Good Enough for LPC

the Apthorp UWS Condo

Developers of The Apthorp, an Upper West Side icon, have been attempting to bring new penthouses to the roof of the landmarked building since last year, and now Area Property Partners will have to put off the potential addition a little longer. Yesterday, a meeting was held with the Landmarks Preservation Commission, and its back to the drawing board for Area Property Partners.

The submitted plan was deemed to be intrusive on the 1908-built building’s Italian Renaissance Revival design, according to Curbed. What the LPC wants is something less bulky and shorter. Though the penthouse addition proposals have been strongly criticized from the beginning, the owners are carrying on in no small part due to the amount of money these penthouses could sell for—upwards of $15 million per home.

Aside from the LPC, there’s one other factor that could potentially stop the entire project from happening, regardless of LPC approval. According to the “Unit Owners at The Apthorp Condominium,” 100 percent approval from the owners is necessary. In a petition filed by the Unit Owners, they quote a section of their offering plan:

Any such development would require the approval of the Unit Owners, the New York City Department of Buildings and the LPC. Development of the Condominium’s unused FAR (floor area ratio) and any reallocation of the Common Interests will require the approval of one hundred (100%) percent of the Unit Owners. [emphasis added]

The roof is a common area, and the current condo owners at the Apthorp have stated that they will not approve any addition. It appears then that the proposal is in vain.

While the Apthorp designs were too much for the LPC, the Commission had the opposite to say for a proposed single-family home at 110 West 88th Street in the Upper West Side. The vacant lot is in the Central Park West Historic District, surrounded by brownstones. The proposed building would be a five-story limestone home, but the LPC wants something surprisingly more modern.

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