There aren’t many reasons why Midtown isn’t one of Manhattan’s most iconic neighborhood. The Empire State Building, The Chrysler Building and Bryant Park make this neighborhood a truly special one.
Commuting is one of the most time-consuming activities workers engage in. The average New Yorker travels about 30 minutes each way from home to work, which means they spend a full ten days per year just on transportation! Many people who work in Manhattan’s Central Business District think of convenience as jumping on a crowded rush hour train. But a superior alternative is eliminating the commute altogether, by living in Midtown – right where you work. Midtown East is a charming, quiet residential enclave just a few blocks away from the skyscrapers of the world’s largest business district.
Midtown East, which runs approximately from the East 30s to East 59th Street, is home to many unique submarkets. Kips Bay, Murray Hill, Tudor City, Turtle Bay, Sutton Place, and the UN District each have their own history, character and community culture. It isn’t just close to businesses but is home to world famous shopping destinations like Saks, Bloomingdales, Bergdorf’s, Tiffany’s and many more. Major cultural institutions, like the Museum of Modern Art, New York Public Library (the lions) and the United Nations are established members of the community. The area also offers many fine restaurants to suit all tastes and budgets, including Michelin 5-star rated Aquavit and Daniel.
Although a great convenience of Midtown East is its proximity to resources, it is also a major hub for transport to other parts of the city and region. Grand Central Terminal, one of America’s most historic landmarks, houses the 4, 5, 6, 7 trains, Times Square shuttle, Metro North railroad, and Amtrak. Other train lines in this easily accessed area are the N, R, W, E, and M. The neighborhood is also served by Queensboro Bridge, Midtown Tunnel and FDR Drive.
While Midtown East is best known for being in the center of everything, the prime appeal to many residents is its tranquil setting along the East River. The scenic waterfront esplanade, which forms the neighborhood’s eastern border, is a haven for dog walkers, rollerbladers, baby strollers, and anything else on wheels. Many high-rise apartment towers offer views stretching across the river to Queens, up to the Queensboro Bridge, and over Manhattan’s skyline. A popular neighborhood amenity is a rooftop deck offering fresh air and sweeping metropolitan views.
Like most of Manhattan, Midtown East became a residential area in the 19th century when colonial farms gave way to single-family townhouses and later to apartment buildings. Fourth Avenue had industrial train tracks transporting manufactured goods from factories in the area. When the industry was replaced by business and commerce in midtown, the tracks were covered, and Park Avenue became the lovely boulevard we know today. High-rise offices and beautiful multi-family apartment buildings were constructed in place of factories and small homes, creating the delightful mix of housing choices available today in Midtown East.
Most apartment buildings in this established neighborhood were built in the 19th and 20th century as residences, so they offer large, gracious layouts and solid construction, unlike some awkward office-to-residential conversions, or new constructions lacking durability. Whether you prefer gleaming modernist statements like Trump World Tower or UN Plaza, or a charming prewar gem like Buchanan with its cloistered courtyard, you can find the perfect home in Midtown East.
It’s no secret that good values are hard to find in great locations. Savvy New Yorkers know that the closer to the center of town a building is, the higher the prices. But excellent prices per square foot are available at Midtown East buildings like Metropolis, Belmont, and Buchanan. Other notable buildings include 685 First Avenue, Anthem at 222 East 34th, Summit at 222 East 44th, and American Cooper at 626 First Avenue.
Smack in the middle of midtown and an easy distance from thousands of businesses, these homes are both reasonably priced – including many no-fee rentals – and convenient. Residents treasure the many hours they save because of minimal commuting. Midtown East is a great alternative for tenants wishing to avoid the Upper East Side’s crowded subway commute and traditionally high prices. This fine established residential area should be explored by those looking for convenience, gracious living and good values.