MIDTOWN EAST — The Republic of Turkey is moving forward with plans for a glassy First Avenue tower that will be the new home of the country’s New York consulate, records show.
Representatives of Turkey filed demolition permits on May 5 for 821 First Ave., at the corner of East 46th Street, and a townhouse next door at 342 E. 46th St. — both of which currently house various Turkish diplomatic offices.
The new 32-story tower will replace the plain, 11-story building that currently sits on at the corner of First Avenue and East 46th Street, as well as the five-story building next door, according to permits filed with the city.
No permits have yet been filed for the new building, but renderings from the architect of the project, Perkins Eastman, show a tower with a curved facade inspired by the crescent that adorns the Turkish flag.
The lower floors of the building will be dedicated to visa and consular offices, while the upper levels will house consulate staff and their families, along with other diplomatic staff, according to a spokesman for Perkins Eastman.
Construction on the new tower is expected to wrap up by 2018, the spokesman said.
According to property records, Turkey has owned the properties since 1976.
Turkey has been planning the project since at least 2012, according to news reports, but the permits come at a time at which the country’s government has made a concerted effort to improve public relations in the United States, including a skywriting stunt denying the Armenian genocide.
Representatives of the Turkish consulate did not respond to a request for comment.