Roman Abramovich buys fourth townhouse on Upper East Side block for $96M mega-mansion
Rendering of the revised LPC proposal from June 2016; via Steven Wang Architects
In the wake of Mayor de Blasio’s claims that Russian oligarchs “basically stole the wealth of their country with the help of their government” and then used these “ill-gotten gains” to buy up property here in the city, one of the country’s best-known billionaires, steel magnate and owner of the Chelsea Football Club Roman Abramovich, has purchased a fourth townhouse on a landmarked Upper East Side block in order to create an unprecedented mega-mansion. According to the Post, Abramovich’s latest buy was a secret one but brought his total assemblage up to a whopping $96 million. Though he could’ve created the “biggest home the city has ever seen,” reps for architect Stephen Wang tell us that the project will still remain a three-townhouse combination, now with a different trio included.
Google Street View of the row. 11 East 75th Street is the brick building with the boarded-up windows. 9 is to its left, while 13 and 15 are the white and red brownstones to its right.
Abramovich has been working with architect Steven Wang, along with big-name firm Herzog & de Meuron as a design consultant. The proposal first went before the Landmarks Preservation Commission in April 2016, at which time they and the DOB rejected the plan for “an 18,255-square-foot mansion with a six-foot front yard, 30-foot backyard, and pool in the cellar.” But two months later, they approved a revised plan that called for “a modified restoration of the current facades and the removal of the rear yard building elements to be replaced with a garden and new glass facade that unites the three homes.”
These initial plans called for the combination of numbers 11, 13, and 15, but now 15 has been dropped and replaced with number 9. Though the sale of 9 East 75th Street has not officially hit city records, a source close to Stephen Wang told the Post that the new row of townhouses will “look better and bring a more balanced facade to the street — it will have more symmetry.” The project is on the LPC public hearing schedule for November 14th. In a statement on the proposal, Stephen Wang said:
A new application for approval has been filed for a renovation project at #9-13 East 75th Street and we are in the process of meeting with and briefing all the relevant City agencies, as well as going through the appropriate regulatory channels for approvals. CB8 has recently approved the design. #15 is no longer part of this project and this remains a three house combination. The new design for the front facades, namely the inclusion of #9, presents a unique restoration opportunity which will lend itself nicely to the block and create a more balanced approach to the streetscape. This is a slight revision of an application started more than two years ago and approved last year by Landmarks. We are confident we will gain the approvals necessary. This process is on-going and we will continue to brief all parties involved and work closely with relevant stakeholders.
More information on the LPC hearing is available here.