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Hotel Renderings: 163 & 180 Orchard, 185 Bowery

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Issac & Stern Architects’ renderings of 180 Orchard St., a future Hotel Indigo.

After living with sidewalk sheds and scaffolding for almost five years, it can be hard to imagine how upper Orchard Street will look when two long-delayed hotel projects are completed. Luckily, the professionals over at Issac & Stern Architects have been hard at work providing us some renderings.

The larger of the two projects in the firm’s portfolio, a 26-story, 250-room Hotel Indigo on 200,000 square feet at 180 Orchard St. owned by Brack Capital, may quickly be nicknamed “Blue II,” if the drawings are true to color. The smaller project, a 10-story building with 33 suites planned on 17,000 square feet at 163 Orchard St., seems to lean green. Thanks to grandfathered zoning, both buildings will tower over their tenement neighbors.

Meanwhile, another Brack Capital project on the LES, a CitizenM Hotel planned at 185-191 Bowery, has also made a recent appearance on the Internet.

Issac & Stern Architects’ rendering of 163 Orchard St., a future 33-suite hotel.

The CitizenM Hotel is expected to begin construction early next year, according to Brack’s website, which offers a few drawings as well as this description: “A 88,500 sq ft boutique hotel in Manhattan’s fastest developing neighborhood. The 315-room hotel  is located in Nolita, with spectacular view of SoHo and its surrounding due to special air rights unique for this location.” (Nolita, in the 10002 ZIP code? Hmm.)

In February 2010, an historic townhouse at 185 Bowery was demolished to make room for the new development, which will take over four building lots near the intersection with Delancey Street.

Brack Capital’s rendering of the CitizenM Hotel planned at 185-191 Bowery.


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  1. The hotel planned for the Bowery will cast a long shadow on the M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden. Since Council Member Gerson we have been trying to get this city to protect parks from this kind of shading which in effect makes parks unusable in the fall (and winter) months. Without sunlight, a park gets too cold to sit in to relax and take a break from city life (especially for elders and parents with children). It also affects what can grow in a park. With this project and others that are already built and planned surrounding this park we are in danger of severely curtailing a park that is the back yard, country home,and air conditioned respite for many residents and workers here. I wonder about the wind tunnel effect on such a narrow strip of park.
    “City planning” rushes to over build hotels making us reliant on one kind of industry, leaving us vulnerable to a mono economy. Not a forward looking strategy in these tumultuous economic times.

  2. The city needs to learn to keep these sykline marring structures in Midtown or Downtown and start thinking about protecting the LES a bit more. I’m not anti-growth, but this is an intl. investment group about to add another eyesore to the LES skyline. Wrong neighborhood for this and sad to see

  3. Who cares? This park is rarely open to the public and is controlled by a small number of people who get all of the benefit from it. I live two blocks away and tried to get involved with the park to gain access when I moved in, and all of my emails to park organizers were ignored. The only times I’ve been in there have been to pick up my CSA vegetables.

  4. To “LES resident”
    The garden’s posted open hours are Saturday and Sunday, 12-4, Thursday 5-7. However, throughout the season from April through the end of October, we are often open beyond those hours. During the weekdays, it is senior protected space, open to any senior citizen who wishes to come in.
    We answer any and all inquiries that we receive; we’re surprised that “all” of your emails received no reply. If you were contacting us through an old email (mkgarden@yahoo.com) please note that the correct email is info@mkgarden.org.
    To answer your question, “who cares?” all we can say is the 25-30 core members and families, several dozen contributing friends of the garden, and a dozen or so partner organizations (including the Stanton Street CSA) care. The children and seniors who visit our chickens in the summer, the volunteers and visitors who attend the 2 clean up day/open houses in the spring and fall,and the community members who enjoyed our “Critter Committee’s” ladybug and firefly releases this summer care. The neighborhood residents, city dwellers from other neighborhoods, and tourists who come on weekends to sit for hours to picnic, read the paper, or play bocce in a tranquil, green space care.
    Who else cares? The gardeners and high-school-aged volunteers who run an annual Halloween event for scores of neighborhood children. Ask the musicians who play at events like our Juneteenth celebration, or our It’s My Park Days how much they care. Check in with Times Up volunteers who run sustainable workshops on composting and bike repairs during the summer on Friday nights, providing additional open hours to the community how much they care. Check in with University Settlement and their pre-school program teachers who bring their children into the garden for outdoor classroom time and see how much they care.
    We could continue, but we would just ask that if you were sincerely interested in finding out more (we always look for neighborhood residents to volunteer to help us steward this community space) drop an email to info@mkgarden.org.
    We look forward to your positive input into our, and your, community green space.
    Debra Glass and Diana Lyon
    M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden

  5. 30 years ago even the Parks Department wouldn’t go into this park. The buildings were boarded up. It was an open drug market. It took that “small number of people” literally risking their lives patrolling the park to rid it of drug dealers and pimps who “owned” this place. Gardeners were threatened, shot at, and beat up. But they stayed and fought for that patch of green space. The garden also took in “your” CSA when it lost it’s space on Stanton Street due to a rent hike.
    If you really want to join all you would have to do is talk to your CSA, or email the website, or stop by on the weekend, or lean over the fence and ask the older gentleman who still works this place almost every day if you can help.

    It’s an all volunteer job so you might have to persist. Kind of like they had to?

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