The 287-room hotel under construction at 310 West 40th Street, also known as Hotel Noy, is nearing completion. Developer Helm Management Inc, design architect Nobutaka Ashihara Associates, and architect of record Fischer & Makooi Architects are collaborating on the 42-story, 474-foot-tall Garment District development, which would feature a restaurant and lounge on its top floor.
The hotel stands across the street from the Port Authority Bus Terminal, which replaced a full city block of multi-story tenements and low-rise commercial buildings in 1950 and established West 40th Street as the Garment District’s northern boundary. The terminal became the world’s largest after expanding in 1963 and 1979. The structure, which dominates the street with a featureless wall and its massive steel truss, contributed to the block’s prolonged period of decline, exacerbated by high crime rates at the end of the 20th century.
In the past two decades, an abundance of underdeveloped lots, high-density zoning, proximity to tourist destinations such as Times Square, and adjacency to the bus terminal and Penn Station encouraged developers to build the city’s highest concentration of hotels on the block bound by West 39th and West 40th streets and Eighth and Ninth avenues. Ten hotels, ranging from 20 to 35 floors, have been built here since 2004.
The DoubleTree by Hilton at 350 West 40th Street, completed in February, joined four adjacent hotels to the east. The group meets the sidewalk with low-rise podiums and forms a continuous street wall of 32-to-35-story, set-back towers. The development at 310 West 40th Street follows a similar template. Its base, which rises 81 feet high, features a 30-foot-high screen that matches the building to the west and conceals an inner court.
The structure at 310 West 40th Street follows the same template as its neighbors but rises well above their 33- to 35-story pinnacles, and ranks as one of the tallest hotels in the city. The building serves as a transition between the Garment District skyline and the taller towers of the Theater District to the northeast, crowned by the 1,046-foot-tall New York Times Building situated a quarter-block away.
A century ago, the Times Square area was noted for its rooftop entertainment venues such as the Hotel Astor. After a prolonged period of decline, the trend is seeing a resurgence across the neighborhood. The lounge planned for the top two floors at 310 West 40th Street joins the Sky Room at 330 West 40th Street and and Lovage NYC at 350 West 40th Street up the block. Cantilevered terraces make the three venues easily identifiable on the skyline.
The permit for the 117,280-square-foot project at 310 West 40th Street dates to November 2013. The fence that rose around the parking lot in late 2014 showcased an early design, marked with dark, staggered rectangles upon a red-brown façade.
By the time excavation began in early 2015, the updated, more traditional design featured a red brick façade, horizontal bands at every sixth floor, and a quoin-like pattern at corners. Ground floor casement windows, which paid homage to the local loft aesthetic, were topped with a curvy pattern that transitioned into an open lattice.
In contrast with earlier iterations, the final design features narrow windows that punctuate a field of austere gray brick, decorated with a pattern of protruding brick clusters that gradually disappear at higher elevations. The final ground floor design remains to be revealed.
The poured concrete frame reached the fourth floor by August 2015, and reached its top floor 12 months later. The façade was mostly completed by early 2017.
The average tower floor measures 50 by 59 feet. The freestanding setting accentuates its height to width ratio of 9.5, which qualifies the building as slender. Blank lot walls anticipate future neighbors of similar scale, such as the high-rise hotel proposed next door at 306 West 40th Street. Given continued demand for real estate in the area, the mid-rise commercial building next door at 312 West 40th Street may face future redevelopment, as well.