Starchitect condos? Old news. Now real estate companies are tapping high-profile architects to design rental apartment buildings. In Lower Manhattan, Forest City Ratner Companies and Frank Gehry, FAIA—the team behind the controversial and recently downsized Atlantic Yards development in Brooklyn—are erecting what will become New York City’s tallest residential dwelling, Beekman Tower. Tenants will start taking occupancy in fall 2010, distinguishing the project as Gehry’s first completed residential tower.
The 76-story skyscraper is rising a few blocks from Ground Zero, and near important historic structures such as City Hall (1811), the Brooklyn Bridge (1883), and the Woolworth Building (1913). While speaking at the construction site in late May, Gehry told reporters architectural pluralism is “chaotic, but should be treated as a virtue instead of a negative.” In that spirit, he has designed an exuberant skyscraper that will add flair to the respected downtown landscape.