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Macy’s will raise a skyscraper atop its Midtown flagship

May 16, 2019

Midtown is bracing for a proliferation of new office towers, and one will sprout atop one of the neighborhood’s most iconic buildings: the Macy’s flagship on 34th Street. 


Bloomberg reports that the retail company has confirmed that it will start the process of plopping a skyscraper atop its blocklong store at Herald Square. The company’s CEO, Jeff Gennette, told Bloomberg that “we hope to walk out of 2019 with a plan that we’re then going to bid out.” 


The news comes after earlier reports that the company had preliminary discussions with city officials, including Manhattan borough president Gale Brewer, about adding an office tower of approximately 1.2 million square feet to its Midtown flagship. That could translate into an 800-foot skyscraper on top of the nearly block-long retail space—one that would require zoning changes to put into effect. Those changes, per a statement from Brewer provided to Bloomberg, “will require major public improvements to the streets and sidewalks that surround the Herald Square neighborhood.”


This isn’t the first time Macy’s has floated the idea of building towers on or around its flagship; similar reports surfaced in 2016. But according to Genette, the company has been working on an actual proposal for the last year and a half. 


The company has made progress on an office building atop its Downtown Brooklyn store: In 2015, Macy’s inked a deal with Tishman Speyer to construct a 10-story addition on that store. The building, which will be known as the Wheeler, is currently under construction and will top out sometime this year.


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