Here is an update on the building on West 31st Street as of our construction meeting last week.
We have encountered no major problems with construction and are still running about a month ahead of schedule for completion. The 53rd floor was poured last week, and plans call for all floors to be completed on June 21. On that day, I will join our partners and the concrete construction workers for the traditional “topping out party.” The climbing crane will begin coming down the following day and should be removed by July 8.
At that point, the floors in the friary section of the building will be filled, and attention will be focused on installing drywall in the friary. The coat of arms sculpture from the old building has already been placed over the friary entrance to the new building.
There are already quite a few people calling inquiring about the rental apartments. However, it is important to note that the Province has nothing to say about the allocation of the low-income apartments. This will be handled through the New York State Housing Authority.
I was on the 47th floor last week. The views of New York City are breathtaking. From the upper floors of the building, you can see both rivers, New Jersey, Long Island, Staten Island, and the entire New York harbor, including the Statue of Liberty. I have been to both the top of the Empire State building and the former World Trade Center and can attest that, even though our building is not as tall, the views from the top floors are very similar. One of the reasons for this is that our building looks out over the part of downtown where most of the buildings are 30 stories or less.
We hope to be in our section of the building next March, and the American Cancer Society section and the apartments should be ready for occupancy by May.
A reporter for a New York construction trade newspaper recently interviewed me, and she commended us for doing such a worthwhile project. She was referring to the fact that the building will be a certified “Green Building” and will include space for our ministry, the American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge, affordable housing, and rental apartments, which are badly needed in Manhattan.