Spring Lake NJ Real Estate

The History of the Bear Stearns Building, 383 Madison Avenue, New York City

The Bear Stearns Building is located at 383 Madison Avenue in New York City and is so large that it takes a full city block. It is located in between Madison and Vanderbilt Avenues and 47th and 48th Streets. Conveniently located in midtown Manhattan, the building is only one block west of the affluent Park Avenue and borders the western edge of the famous Rockefeller Center.

In the 1980's the original site for 383 Madison Avenue had a proposal for a 72 story tall tower that was unable to be constructed due to a restriction on air space. In the year 2000 developers Sterling Equities & Hines Interests commissioned architect David Childs (Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP) to build what would become the 88th highest building in the world for Bear Stearns & Company.

383 Madison Avenue was officially completed in 2001 but the official ceremony and grand opening of 383 Madison Avenue (better known as the Bear Stearns Building) did not happen until 2002. But 383 Madison Avenue was not just designed to be one of the tallest skyscrapers in New York; the primary design was to limit business interruptions through massive oil and water reservoirs and unique uninterruptible power supplies and back-up emergency power systems. These unique properties of 383 Madison Avenue helped it achieve the New York Construction Award of Merit in 2001 and the BOMA Award in both 2002 and 2003.

The architectural style of 383 Madison Avenue is known as" post modern" and stands 757 feet tall with an octagonal-shaped tower sitting atop a rectangular base. But the most predominant feature of the building is the 70 foot, seven story octagonal glass crown that stands proud within the New York City skyline.

Like most skyscrapers 383 Madison Avenue is made of steel to withstand both natural elements and disasters. The exterior of the steel is clad in "Deer Island" granite and features large tinted glass windows with chrome colored metal trim.

The interior of 383 Madison Avenue features 47 floors and has a total surface space of 1,200,000 square feet. When originally opened 383 Madison Avenue was the world headquarters for Bear Stearns' trading operations and was strategically located on the top six floors of the eight story rectangular base. Each trading floor accommodated nearly 420 traders on a daily basis and covered approximately 42,000 square feet. The interior design of the building also has some very unique features. An average office has 12 foot tall ceilings while 383 Madison Avenue has an open concept with the octagon tower reflecting what appear to be several extremely tall trading floors.

But just like any other architectural structure the Bear Stearns Build at 383 Madison Avenue was not without criticism. Joseph Giovannini of the New York Magazine was quoted as saying "As if revealing the subconscious desire of what the tower really wanted to be, a tiara of translucent glass emerges at the top." "The notion of a tiara is lovely, but given the girth of this one, it is more like a choker."

Upon the collapse and sale of Bear Stearn in 2008 the Bear Stearns building (better known as 383 Madison Avenue) is now owned by JP Morgan Chase. But it is no longer referred to as the Bear Stearns building it is commonly known to New Yorkers as New York City's lighthouse because when illuminated at night the seven story glass crown shines like a beacon in the night.

Written and researched by Edward Winslow.

Edward Winslow has been in the real estate industry since 1987. Ed began his career with commercial real state company CB Richard Ellis in NYC. Until 2001 ed specialized in the sale of commercial and residential buildings in NYC and the tri-state area.

Ed's primary specialty was older historic and rehab properties ranging from $1 million to $25 million. In 2001 Ed started a real estate investment and construction company focusing on the rehab market in the tri state area. In 2003 the company expanded into resurfacing building exteriors with various stucco systems and eventually resurfacing concrete floors with epoxy and decorative concrete. In 2005 Ed formed Crete Ventures LLC which owns various web sites devoted to restoring residential and commercial properties with decorative and functional coatings.

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