Places, Everyone! The New Development Boom Is About to Start
April 20, 2011
By: Laura Kusisto

Thick black slabs of plywood encase what some call North America's most valuable development site. The location of the onetime Drake Hotel, now a rubble-strewn yard at Park Avenue and 56th Street, is literally a black box.

A black box to everyone, that is, except Harry Macklowe. Barely two years after his fortune was nearly wiped out by an ill-fated $7 billion, seven-skyscraper spree, the litigious genius-just into his eighth decade, with long jowls and a beakish nose-is the surprising developer behind ambitious plans for a possible 70-story condo tower with three stories of luxury retail.

"Harry is a force of nature," said Woody Heller, a top broker with Studley. "He is a man in perpetual motion. He has one of the most creative minds I have ever known."...

... "It is one of the most brilliant deals," said Mr. Heller, the sole broker on the sale, "that CIM or Macklowe will have done." ...

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