Accidental Skyline-compressed Image: mas.org

Renderings for NYC supertalls typically portray the buildings as massive, sleek structures that stand in striking contrast to the rest of the city’s skyline. But as a new project from the Municipal Art Society of New York (MASNYC) shows, appearances can be deceiving.

MASNYC’s “Accidental Skyline” project has released a number of “corrected” supertall advertisements. They show more complete renderings — in that they include numerous other nearby supertalls, which are typically left out of the developer-produced renderings. As the corrected renderings show, sometimes the missing buildings will even block views.

With interactive sliders, users view current renderings and slide to reveal outlines of other upcoming supertall buildings. It turns out that, while residents of 53 West 53rd will have stunning park views, they won’t be completely uninterrupted. 111 West 57th will be just slightly in the way while all along 53rd Street, the East River and Hudson River views are sure to be at least marginally disturbed.

MASNYC’s “Accidental Skyline” project began in 2013, “in response to the super-tall towers rising along the southern border of Central Park.” The project is concerned about over-reaching use of “development rights from adjacent buildings” which do not require public or environmental review.

MASNYC notes that the 57th Street corridor is not the only area that will see new supertall structures. One map shows NYC’s next skyscraper frontiers, including Midtown, East Harlem, Long Island City and Hudson Yards, among others.

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