Master Apartments Building

Master Apartments Building
  1. About the Master Apartments Building in New York
    1. Building Catalogations
  2. Architect and team
  3. Architectureal style
  4. Spaces and uses
  5. Structure and materials

The Master Apartments Building is an Art-deco skyscraper designed by Helmle, Corbett & Harrison and built between 1928 and 1929, for a reported $1.93 million dollars, in New York, NY.

Master Apartments Building is not the only name you might know this building by though. The building is, or has also been known as Master Building.

Its precise street address is 310 Riverside Drive, New York, NY. You can also find it on the map here.

The Master Apartments Building is a structure of significant importance both for the city of New York and the United States as a nation. The building embodies the distinctive characteristic features of the time in which it was built and the Art Deco style. Because of that, the Master Apartments Building was officially declared as a national landmark on December 5th 1989, and was included in the National Register of Historic Places on February 23rd 2016.

The building has been restored 5 times over the years to ensure its conservation and adaptation to the pass of time. The main restoration works happened in 1979, 1990, 1996, 2004 and 2005.

Building's timeline

Construction begins
Construction completed
Declared NL
Added to the NRHP
years ago
  1. 1979 - Conversion into condominium housing.
  2. 1990 - Installation of new aluminnum windows.
  3. 1996 - Addition of wheelchair access doors, restoration of iron bars and elevator doors. The architect in charge was Antonucci and Lawless.
  4. 2004 - The terracotta and bricks of the facade were restored.
  5. 2005 - Restoration of some units.

Architect and team

Helmle, Corbett & Harrison was the architecture firm in charge of the architectural design. But there was also one other architect involved, as far as we know. We are talking about Sugarman & Berger.

Helmle, Corbett & Harrison and the other architects already mentioned were in charge of the architectural design, however, architecture is a complex discipline, which usually involves many professionals from different fields, without whom this building would have not been possible. We will surely be leaving out a lot of names here, but here is a list of the people we do know also played their part in making the Master Apartments Building a reality:

  • Longacre Construction Company as the Main Contractor
  • Louis L.Horch,Nettie Horch as the Main Developer

Architectural Style

The Master Apartments Building can be categorized as an Art-deco building.

The Art Deco movement flourished during the 1920s and 1930s, with many historians marking the outbreak of World War II as its final decline. Even though a couple of decades might not seem as much, the Art Deco movement had a great impact on architecture, and it's widely represented in many American cities due to the development boom that happened during that time.

Art Deco marked the abandonment of traditional historicism and the embracement of modern living and the age of the machine. In architecture, that meant leaving behind the ornaments of Beux-Arts and Neo-Gothic buildings and instead favoring simplicity and visual impact through geometric shapes, clean lines, and symmetrical designs. Ornaments were still an important part of the design, but they became bold and lavish, and were often inspired by ancient cultures or industrial imagery, instead of nature.

The Master Apartments Building was completed in 1929, right when the Art Deco movement was at its peak, so it kind of went with the trend at that time.

Spaces & Uses

The Master Apartments Building reaches an architectural height of 443ft (135m). It has a total of 29 floors, served by 4 elevators

The building sits on a 204,460 sqf (18,995m2) lot.It has a built-up area of 204,460 sqf (18,995m2) offering 189,466 sqf (17,602m2) of usable space.

When it opened its doors to the public in 1929, the Master Apartments Building was primarily used as Hotel, Cultural space. That however, is no longer the case, and today it mainly provides Residential space.

About the residences

The Master Apartments Building has a total of 323 residential units throughout its 29 floors. If you are interested in learning more about the residences and their availability, you can check the Master Apartments Building's website.

443ft (135m)

Materials & Structure

The Master Apartments Building uses a frame structure made of steel columns and concrete slabs.

A frame structure uses a combination of beams and columns to sustain the building's weight. The walls in this case are non-load bearing, which allows for more flexibility when distributing the interior spaces.

The facade is non-load bearing either, as it is common in frame structure type buildings.

From an aesthetic point of view, the facade features stamped bricks in deep purple tones at the base that turn to gray tones on the upper floors, with an ornamental cap. There is a brick pattern at the base, entrance trim, and spandrel panels, along with terracotta cresting at the edges of the terrace parapets. The glass doors at the entrnce are framed by a mirrored glass and sidelightss.

Other materials found at the Master Apartments Building include, terrazzo, used in geometric patterns on some floors, aluminum, with geometrics motifs was in elevator doors, as well as for the octagoal light fixtures in the lobby, and limeston, used in lobby floor, baseeboards, staircase and balustrades.