Developers to build tower on last vacant Times Square lot

A 35-story tower will soon fill the last vacant parcel of land in the 13-acre Times Square district.

Howard and Edward Milstein are building a $500 million, 850,000-square-foot structure on a parking lot they bought in 1983 for $5 million. The project is taking place 22 years after New York City and the state launched a plan to transform seedy Times Square into an upscale, sought-after location.

The new tower will combine office space, stores and possibly apartments at the corner of 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue. Fox & Fowle, the architects who designed the nearby Condé Nast and Reuters buildings, are working on the structure.

“Eddie and I are 100 percent committed to completing this building by 2004,” Howard Milstein told the New York Times. “Even in these times of uncertainty, New York City and Times Square remain the crossroads of the world.”

Redevelopment of the Times Square area floundered for a while because of community opposition and the recession of the early 1990s. But in the late 1990s, companies flooded the district, which is now home to the largest toy store in the world, theatres, restaurants and expensive office buildings.

The Milstein project isn’t the only one in the works at Times Square. Boston Properties is building a tower and developers have completed or are building eight apartment towers.