Changes in the skyline

In the heyday of NYC real estate, the skyline was dominated by towering cranes and rising megaprojects. While the number of construction permits in the first half of 2011 rose 12 percent over last year, according to data from the city’s Department of Buildings, a laundry list of 631 stalled projects remains arrested by continued economic unrest.

Construction financing is still the biggest hurdle facing developers, explains Stephen Kliegerman, President of Terra Development Marketing. “Being able to make the banks feel comfortable with large projects and their ability to be absorbed into the marketplace is a challenge, and there is a lack of developable land that could support large-scale complexes.”

For those that have financing in place, construction costs have risen at a faster pace than in past years — up 3.55 percent in 2011 according to Engineering News-Record’s Building Cost Index. This has made larger projects harder to justify, making developers tend toward smaller buildings and conversions.

Nevertheless, all hope is not lost, as a few new projects promise to change the Manhattan skyline. Here’s a look at what you can expect to see climbing upwards in  the next two years.

One57 sits at the top

Extell Development’s 1,005-foot Park Hyatt/Condo residence project at 57th Street and Sixth Avenue is by far the most talked-about new development in years, as it will rise as the tallest residential building in the Western Hemisphere upon completion in 2013. This 13-year-in-the-making behemoth is already past its 27th floor, and the penthouses are rumored to be priced at $98 million.


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