601 West 57 Street, 830 12th Avenue (Durst Sites 1 (Helena) and 2)

Address: Residential Site-601 West 57 Street (601-605 W. 57th, 839-845 11th Ave)
Commercial Site-830 12th Ave (820-838 12th Ave, 651 W 57th, 652 W 58th)
Landmark status: No


Risa Shoup, Programming Director
201 East 42 Street 32nd Floor
NY, NY 10017
(212) 391-8151

Contact Information for Durst Sites 1-4:
Helena Durst, Assistant Vice President
Durst Development, LLC
155 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
(212) 789-1129

William Floyd
Law Office of Claudia Wagner
277 Broadway
New York, NY 10007
(212) 619-2052


Summary of site plans and status

The Durst Organization owns most of the block between 57th and 58th Streets and 11th and 12th Avenues. This large piece of land is currently zoned for one residential building and one commercial building.


601 West 57 Street – The Helena

The construction of the 37-story residential tower, known as the Helena, is complete, and the tower opened in March 2005. There are 600 residential units, and the building is 80/20. The building is fully occupied. The tower has a gold LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating.


Residential Site:
Block No: 1105
Lot No: 29

The Durst Organization is also building a residential tower on the commercially zoned site next to the Helena. Community Board 4 agreed to meet with Durst to discuss the building of a residential tower in exchange for leasing the ground floor commercial space of the building to Bay Ridge Auto Group at below market rate. A meeting between interested parties including Community Board 4 and Council Member Brewer will be scheduled fall 2007.

Nations Academy Site:
Block No: 1105
Lot No: 14, 19, 43, and part of 5

UPDATE: 4/3/08

It is our understanding that the Nations Academy developer has applied for Industrial Development Agency (IDA) bonds for this school site.

The term of the IDA has currently expired, and will require state legislative action to extend its term. At this point, the state has not acted.

It is the opinion of Council Member Gale A. Brewer that this is a For Profit school. However, the developer has applied for IDA bonds as a Not-for-Profit school. Council Member Brewer believes the developer is not entitled to receive public money.


UPDATE: 3/3/08

The Durst Organization submitted a special permit application in connection with the construction of a new school at 614-623 West 58 Street. The Durst Organization proposes to construct a six story building on the mid-block portion of West 57/58 Street between Eleventh and Twelfth Avenues. The southern half of the new academy building is located in a C4-7 zoning distric, where the construction is permitted as of right; however, the northern half of the building is located in an M1-5 zoning district where such use is not permitted, except by Board of Standards and Appeals special permit. The application requests a special permit to allow the construction and operation of the academy on the entire project site.


The Durst Organization is planning to build a private school called The Nation School, next to the Helena Residence. The Nation School will be the first of many schools planned to built across the United States and the world featuring grades K – 12. The organization plans to build a four to five story school, encompassing up to 200,000 square feet. The first phase of the school will house grades through 7.


830 12 Avenue

This site is a vacant building previously owned by Art Craft Strauss, and currently owned by the Durst Organization. While vacant, it houses artists and their workspaces as part of a program operated by Chashama

Commercial Site:
Block No: 1105
Lot No: 1


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