Anyone who hasn’t been to the city for some time will be captivated, and possibly alienated, by the new architectural profile of New York. The Empire State, the Chrysler and other 1930s classics have maintained their grandeur. But they seem to be losing much of their visual relevance to the most recent construction development: the ultra-high residential apartment buildings that continue to spring up in Manhattan.
These structures are some of the most expensive residences in the world, and among the tallest. Developers have amassed air rights and made use of loopholes in zoning laws to create luxurious enclaves which in some cases are only occupied on a part-time basis by individuals who maintain multiple homes. Large portions of these buildings may contain no apartments at all, since up to a quarter of the interior space can be reserved for the necessary mechanical equipment systems.