Tag Archives: 1989

100 United Nations Plaza

100 United Nations Plaza, a 52-story wedge-topped condo monolith, dominated Turtle Bay until the Trump World Tower was built next door in 2001. (Appropriately, Trump World Tower looks as though it came right out of the movie “2001, A Space Odyssey.”)

Completed in 1989, the building is layered brick and glass containing 267 condominium apartments. The north and south facades of this giant arrow are different: The uptown side sports three columns of balconies; the downtown side has five columns of triangular balconies. Entry to the building is through a landscaped plaza on East 48th Street (327 E 48th Street, to be exact), deeply offset from First Avenue.

Apartments range up to six BR/six bath, and have nine-foot ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows; all are fitted with luxury appliances. The building amenities include garage and a fitness center with pool.

100 United Nations Plaza Vital Statistics
  • Location: 327 E 48th Street between First and Second Avenues
  • Year completed: 1989
  • Architect: Der Scutt Architects and Schuman, Lichtenstein, Claman & Efron
  • Floors: 52
  • Style: Postmodern
100 United Nations Plaza Suggested Reading

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Worldwide Plaza

Worldwide Plaza is the whole-block development of William Zeckendorf, Jr. that helped reshape the Clinton neighborhood in 1989. (Not everyone agreed that that was a good thing, but there you go.)

Formerly the site of Madison Square Garden, the development includes One Worldwide Plaza, a 50-story office tower on Eighth Avenue; Two Worldwide Plaza, a 38-story condominium apartment tower located mid-block; and Three Worldwide Plaza (aka The Residences at Worldwide Plaza), a seven-story condominium complex on Ninth Avenue. (The Residences also include ground-floor retail spaces.) A plaza separates the two towers, and an off-Broadway theater is built under the plaza.

The office tower was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; the residential units were designed by Frank Williams. The copper-and-glass crown on One Worldwide Plaza is known as “David’s Diamond,” after SOM architect David Childs.

Destined for landmark status, Worldwide Plaza is not loved by all. The “AIA Guide to New York City” sniffs, “Heavy-handed, the office tower aspires to the serene solidity of Rockefeller Center, but lacks that center’s graceful slenderness, setbacks and elegant understated urban space: Rockefeller Plaza and its skating rink.”

Worldwide Plaza was important enough for PBS to film a four-part documentary, “Reach For The Sky” and companion book “Skyscraper: The Making of a Building.” (Links to both, below.)

One Worldwide Plaza Vital Statistics
  • Location: Eighth Avenue between W 49th and W 50th Streets
  • Year completed: 1989
  • Architect: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
  • Floors: 50
  • Style: Postmodern
Two Worldwide Plaza Vital Statistics
  • Location: Between Eighth and Ninth Avenues, block-through W 49th to W 50th Street
  • Year completed: 1989
  • Architect: Frank Williams
  • Floors: 38
  • Style: Postmodern
Three Worldwide Plaza Vital Statistics
  • Location: Ninth Avenue between W 49th and W 50th Streets
  • Year completed: 1989
  • Architect: Frank Williams
  • Floors: 7
Worldwide Plaza Suggested Reading

Google Map