A bunch of big media blogs and papers[1] have employed this dirt outline trope you see above. The “hey look we Google Maps Earth smart!” shots are combined with a story about the recent application by “Queens Plaza Park Development, which represents the interests of Property Markets Group and The Hakim Organization[2],” for building a 77 stories tall residential tower, accommodating 930 units.

The plot/s (two combined into one outline), at 29-37 41st Avenue, are adjacent to the iconic Bank of Manhattan Building (or more loquaciously the Bank of Manhattan Long Island City Branch Building), vernacularly simply called the LIC Clocktower (itself vying for landmark status, for fear of being torn down).

A portion of the plots did at one time contain an even smaller bank building, but the other plot has been empty as long as I can remember. So it’s mind-boggling to consider, this otherwise always-been-a-dirt-plot being suddenly worth millions – just for the dirt, which doesn’t include the cost of building the tower!

And wait, did you say 77 STORIES?!?

The clocktower, resting here since 1927 and historically famed as “the tallest building in Queens” for 63 years until the Citigroup tower (located .4+ miles away) surpassed it in 1990, is only 14 or 15 stories tall, depending on how you measure the ground floor. So when I saw those dirt outlines I thought, “OK, but what would a 77 story building actually look like?”

I’m sure whatever they propose will be full of lots of steel and glass and absolute lack of creativity or character, but I also thought I’d assist the conversation a bit by showing what the clocktower would look like if it were 77 stories tall, in context with the surrounding neighborhood structures:


Now that just seems silly!

Of course, even these satellite images are not current. There’s been so much construction in recent months that the plot about 1″ to the left of the clocktower at this scale is a future hotel being built currently – what you see here that is just foundation is now some 20+ stories tall (seen in background in video below). So the neighborhood is already scaling up, but 77 stories just seems excessive, even gluttonous.

Furthermore, it’s not exactly a hushless, low-traffic intersection. Here’s a video of an N/Q train rolling into Queensboro Plaza station. TIP: turn your speakers down:

So part of me thinks, “Enjoy!”

Again let’s recap:


[1] Images courtesy of Curbed, the Queens Courier, and NY Daily News.
[2] This line courtesy of local blog LIC Post, who also followed along with the outline trope.

Update: I wasn’t too far off: