A crane atop a luxury condominium tower collapsed 1,000 feet above West 57th Street in New York City on Monday afternoon. The tower's development company is unsure when the crane can be secured or removed.
Tuesday morning, Crain's New York Business contacted Gary Barnett, president of Extell Development, the company behind luxury residential tower One57. Barnett said that construction manager Bovis Lend Lease was waiting for winds to die down before removing the collapsed crane from the Midtown building.
"Hopefully it will hold," Barnett told Crain's. "As soon as we're allowed we're going to try to secure it and take it down. Right now the wind is still too strong. Everything that can be done is being done."
During a conference on Tuesday morning, Mayor Michael Bloomberg also said they must wait. “The procedure will be to get the boom and strap it to the building,” Bloomberg said. “Then we can reopen the streets.”
The crane collapsed on Monday at the 57th Street construction site, between Sixth and Seventh Avenues, HuffPost previously confirmed. Wind, which reached speeds of 95 mph, caused the crane to crumple 75 stories in the air.
The danging 80-ton swing arm was surely one of the most startling sites for New York City residents, before they felt the full brunt of Hurricane Sandy on Monday night. Police cordoned off seven square blocks and began evacuating people from nearby areas, The New York Times reports.
Construction at One57 was halted on Saturday at 5 p.m., according to the Associated Press. Bloomberg said the crane had been inspected on Friday, Oct. 26, before Sandy hit the region.
"It's conceivable that nobody did anything wrong whatsoever and it wasn't even a malfunction, it was just a strange gust of wind," Bloomberg said during a news conference on Monday, according to the Chicago Tribune. "Just because it was inspected, that doesn't mean that God doesn't do things or that metal doesn't fail. There's no reason to think at this point in time that the inspection wasn't adequate."
However, reports allege that One57 received numerous construction complaints before Hurricane Sandy whipped through on Monday. The real estate website StreetEasy noted the citations (via Time magazine):
One57 has received numerous complaints from the Department of Buildings since construction began in May 2010 — some of which have been related to their construction cranes. At least one of the complaints is apparently still active, according to the site. Dated Sept. 15, this complaint states that the building was shaking and vibrating during construction, and that its structural stability was affected. No other details are available at this time. The report also indicates that during the course of two years of construction, the building has received a total of 11 partial or complete stop-work orders.
Barnett plans to resume work on the tower in a few days, according to the Bloomberg news network. As of Tuesday afternoon, the crane continued to teeter in the sky.
At 90 stories high, One57 is set to be the tallest residential building in New York City when completed, offering unparalleled views of Manhattan. The $1.7 billion building is already a hot commodity; one penthouse is on the market for $115 million, according to Forbes. One apartment has already sold for $90 million.
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