Radson Development files request for West Side towers

Radson Development co-founder Jacob Rad and the development site (Google Maps, LinkedIn via Rad)

Radson Development’s vision for a pair of residential towers on the site of a former slaughterhouse in Hell’s Kitchen is on the way to becoming a reality, according to new construction demand.

Plans for city council review call for a 794,000 square foot mixed-use building at 495 Eleventh Avenue, comprising two connected towers: a 55-story south tower with 683 hotel units and a 56-story north tower with 358 residential units.

The development will also include a 4,800 square foot supermarket, 8,900 square feet of office space and vehicle storage space for the NYPD, which has used the site as a parking lot for decades.

The city’s economic development corporation led the zoning request, which authorized a vote by the planning committee on September 1. City council has until November 8 to complete its review of the project.

“We are thrilled with this opportunity to bring 358 affordable apartments, including homes and services for former homeless people, to Hell’s Kitchen as well as a great new hotel and supermarket on 11th Avenue,” a door- word of Radson Development, which specializes in housing and mixed-use projects, said in a statement.

The city has long sought to redevelop the property, which sits across from the Javits Center, into affordable housing. After issuing a call for tenders in 2015, EDC selected Radson’s bid in 2017, which at the time provided for 234 apartments, 200,000 square feet of office space and 80,000 square feet of dormitories.

Today, Radson’s proposed development includes 275 affordable housing units as per the city’s mandatory inclusive housing requirements; 71 of the units will be affordable to households earning up to 80 percent of the region’s median income. Gene Kaufman Architect is the benchmark architect.

The site was once home to the New York Butchers’ Dressed Meat Company slaughterhouse, a one-block building constructed in the early 20th century that remained operational until the late 1950s.

The City took over the building in 1975 after a period of unpaid taxes by its owner. A private developer had planned to build an office building on the site in the 1980s, according to a 2015 letter to the EDC from Manhattan Community Board Four, but the vote to authorize it was delayed by the president of the Manhattan Borough, David Dinkins and plans were dropped.

After the Community Board Four unsuccessfully sought to have the property designated as a landmark in the late 1980s, the building was found to be structurally flawed and was demolished. Since then, it has remained an NYPD parking lot.

EDC did not respond to requests for comment.

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