One Astor Plaza
|One Astor Plaza|
One Astor Plaza
New York City, U.S.
|Owner||SL Green Realty|
|Roof||227 m (745 ft)|
|Floor area||179,487 m2 (1,931,980 sq ft)|
|Design and construction|
|Architect||Der Scutt of Ely J. Kahn & Jacobs|
One Astor Plaza is a 745 ft (227 m) high skyscraper in Times Square in Midtown Manhattan, New York City. Completed in 1972, the building is 54 stories tall and was designed by Der Scutt of Ely J. Kahn & Jacobs. Originally known as the W. T. Grant Building as headquarters of the eponymous, now-defunct retailer, it is currently the headquarters for Viacom and houses the MTV Studios, Minskoff Theatre, Best Buy Theater, and some retail outlets. It is located at 1515 Broadway between West 44th & 45th Streets. Previously, the Astor Hotel occupied this location. It was built in 1904 and closed in 1967. Construction of the W. T. Grant Building began in 1968 and was completed in 1972.
It is owned and managed by SL Green Realty Corporation The building engineers are Shmerykowsky Consulting Engineers.
Third Floor: Minskoff Theatre
The Minskoff is a Broadway theatre named after its developers, a prominent local real estate family. Accessible from the middle arcade in the center of the building, it opened in 1973 with 1,621 seats.
Second Floor: MTV Studios
Astor Plaza houses the MTV Studios, which is owned by Viacom, the building's primary tenant. The studios are located on the mezzanine second story of the building. MTV acquired it in 1997. It is split into three major studios all located by the floor-to-ceiling windows and iconic window shades. The three studios are named after the three sections of Manhattan: the Uptown Studio, the Midtown Studio, and the Downtown Studio. They are named so because they are proportional to the real sections of Manhattan. The Uptown Studio was home to MTV's former flagship program, Total Request Live, during the show's run from 1998 to 2008 along with MTV & VH1. The Midtown Studio is used by MTV News, the Nickelodeon networks and Comedy Central. The smallest studio, the Downtown Studio, is occasionally used for other countdown shows, such as Direct Effect and Big Ten, and the other MTV networks. It is occasionally used as a temporary green room if the actual green room is occupied. The MTV Studios also include dressing rooms, control rooms, a cafeteria, and some offices.
MTV also uses the seventh floor roof and many upstairs floors in the building.
Street Level: Retail Outlets
Lower Level: Best Buy Theater
The Loews Astor Plaza movie theater originally occupied the building's public space below street level, accessible from West 44th St. It opened on June 26, 1974 and was New York's largest capacity cinema at 1,440 seats. The theater's single screen often drew large crowds on opening nights. It closed in 2004, making Clearview's Ziegfeld Theatre New York's current largest cinema. After a nine month $21 million renovation, the space reopened as the Nokia Theatre at Times Square. Holding approximately 2,100, it is now known as Best Buy Theater, a live music venue operated by Anschutz Entertainment Group.
2010 car bombing attempt
On the evening of May 1, 2010, a failed car bomb was defused by the New York Police Department on West 45th St. and Broadway, near the eastern corner of the Viacom headquarters building.
The authorities briefly investigated a possible connection between the bomb and the 200th episode of Comedy Central's South Park, which had included depictions of a man in a bear suit (labeled 'Bears') that the South Park kids pointed at, calling him Muhammad.
- Sisario, Ben (18 August 2010). "Best Buy Takes Its Brand to a Times Square Theater". The New York Times. Retrieved 22 August 2011.
- "Police Won't Rule Out 'South Park' Link in Times Square Bomb Attempt". Fox News. 3 May 2010.