I was ecstatic when I found a tiny one bedroom (not Chatham Towers) in Chinatown through a series of multilingual negotiations with a Chinese grandma landlord this past summer. Having lived in New York for roughly 11 years and 5 different neighborhoods, Chinatown is one of most interesting neighborhood in the city that hasn’t been swallowed whole by gentrification and offers some of the most overlooked architecture in New York.
In particular, I get a bad case of apartment envy every time I pass by Chatham Towers. Built in the 1960s by Kelly & Gruzen, the pair of concrete towers flexes its Brutalist muscles against the backdrop of New York by Gehry’s shiny new wavy facade. As the first residential tower in New York with extruded aluminum windows and double panel interior walls, Chatham Towers is a gem that appeals to a niche crowd of architecture fanatics. For now, I can only dream of one day living in this impeccable piece of post-war modernist architecture – although Mr. Scott is probably right, nobody ever leaves.