Show Us Your Roof: 8 Spruce Street

The “Show Us Your Roof” series has been a welcome summer diversion, but I was ready to call an end to it—and then I was offered the opportunity to see the view from a north-facing terrace atop a setback about two-thirds of the way up 8 Spruce Street, a.k.a. New York by Gehry. I had never been inside the building, let alone that high up. Holy cow!

I love how the crinkly shape is so evident. And you really get a neat view of it when you look up and/or around the corner.

The terrace runs along the north side of the building, with views that stretch to around 300 degrees as you go from end to end. Here’s looking to the southeast and the east, including down at the Southbridge Towers complex. (Click on the photos to make them larger.)

The Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges steal the show, of course. Watching the traffic come and go along them, including on the various ramps, was mesmerizing.

You really can see just about forever; I suppose that’s Queens in the distance. I marveled to the apartment’s occupant that it wasn’t windy, like I expected it to be at that height. He said it’s usually not so bad (even if the furniture had to be bolted to the floor), which was disappointing: Those of us without terraces like this tell ourselves that it really would be too windy for us, anyway.

I was especially drawn to the Municipal Building, possibly because my own apartment has a nice view of it, but from much farther down. The top is quite the fantasyland, isn’t it? I’d love to explore that….

And attention must be paid to the Surrogate Court Building. I explained to the resident that anyone can—and should!—enter the building; the Municipal Archives are there, usually hosting some exhibit. It looks as if you could land a helicopter on that roof.

Looking north and northwest, you get extraordinary view of City Hall, Midtown, Hudson Yards, the best part of 56 Leonard, and much, much, much more. The first photo benefits greatly from being enlarged.

And to the west, I loved how the Woolworth Building and 30 Park Place align perfectly, and even more, how the top of 111 Murray is see-through. And New Jersey is in the distance, if you’re into that.

The sun made the southwest view less than ideal, but you can tell it’s usually pretty spectacular. (Note the Oculus.) Alas, much of it will be blocked by 1 Beekman (25 stories) and 23 Park Row (45 stories), both of which are currently under construction.

We spent a while looking down at 150 Nassau, with its green roof (and four-level funhouse of a penthouse). And then we noticed the fabulous roof deck on 145 Nassau (the Potter Building), which includes a little cottage.

Last but certainly not least, the resident invited me back inside to look through impressive binoculars at the statue, “Civic Fame,” atop the Municipal Building.

••• 403 Greenwich
••• 80 Chambers/270 Broadway
••• 53 N. Moore
••• 88 Greenwich
••• 50 Murray
••• 100 Barclay
••• 200 Chambers



  1. Please don’t end this series! It’s the best.

  2. amazing…these rooftop visits just keep getting better

  3. Absolutely wonderful shots! Thanks so much, to you and the resident.