252 East 57th Street

A shimmering addition to the New York City skyline, 252 East 57th Street is a 65-story luxury mixed-use tower in Midtown Manhattan. The building’s residential program is organized with rental units on the lower floors and condominiums on the 36th floor and above. The unit mix—169 rental apartments and 95 condominiums—is positioned to maximize long-term value.

The building’s dynamic presence is shaped by its distinctive facade, with a glazing geometry that employs inversions in the exterior wall. From the highest floors, inverted bay windows on the west and north elevations offer spectacular views of Central Park, while the east and south elevations overlook the Queensboro Bridge and the East River. View analysis and unit type synthesis informed the inverted bay window concept, as well as the curving form of the tower, which becomes more dramatic as it rises further from the street. Six distinct glass treatments on the facade, including acid-etched, fritted, and cast glass, come together in a refined manner to become a study on the material itself.

The experience of the tower begins with an elegant porte cochère, which gives residents a degree of privacy and security atypical of similar buildings. A 60-car automated parking vault is attached. SOM’s Interior Design practice was involved in the space planning of the entire tower. SOM led the interior design of the rental units and amenities, including the reception area, business center, lounge, and adjoining garden. Daniel Romualdez led the design of the condominium interiors and amenities, including a double-height residents’ lounge, theatre, and private spa with a 75-foot indoor swimming pool.

The project is the result of a public-private partnership with the Educational Construction Fund and World Wide Group in partnership with Rose Associates. Along with the commercial retail space at street level, the redevelopment of the site includes two public schools. By locating school entrances on the quieter side streets while placing retail and residential entrances along 57th Street and 2nd Avenue, the site planning enlivens the streetscape, serves the community, and realizes the full potential of a previously underdeveloped parcel in Midtown Manhattan.