Nosy Neighbor: What’s Going on at 217 Broadway?

Any idea what’s happening in 217 Broadway (the Astor Building) at Broadway and Vesey? Most of the building was vacated in the past two weeks, and work crews are in there nearly 24 hours a day. Interior walls on most floors have been removed. It looks like a total renovation… or they’re tearing it down. I can’t find any construction permits related to the work. —P.

There are a few recent Department of Buildings permits, for floors 3 through 6. The main one is for “the interior fit-out which includes demising walls/interior partitions and finishes, floor and ceiling assemblies and finishes and mock up space kitchens, toilets and storefront assemblies.” The owner is listed as Park Row Sales LLC, in itself a clue, although not as big a one as the contact’s email address, which has as its domain. L+M Development Partners is the developer of 25 Park Row, the 49-story building going up across the way. According to the company’s web page on the project, 25 Park Row is “currently contemplated [?] to consist of 110 residential condominiums and approximately 67,000 SF of multi-level commercial space.” Then again, the website also says the building will be 45 stories. I was told by a rep that it’s definitely 49 stories but the retail can’t be confirmed. Either way, I think we can assume they’re mocking up the storefronts, too, because it’s likely to be a lot of retail for the block. (The rep wouldn’t comment about the sales office.)

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