Today's heat wave conditions might have you seeking shade, but gather ye UV rays while ye may because soon our city will be a shadowy thicket of sad beneath a forest of super-tall luxury condos. Specifically, the southern edge of Central Park will be heavily shadowed throughout much of the day by a pack of under-construction skyscrapers coming to midtown. This encroachment of private enterprise onto public space has already drummed up some passionate umbrella theatrics, but now a new video really puts it all in perspective.
Real estate blog Cube Cities has created a digital time-lapse revealing how "Billionaire's Row" will make a sundial out of the park every day. The exact length and duration of the shadows will vary as the sun's angle over Manhattan gradually changes with the seasons, but in the 46-second clip we're shown that a "typical fall day" in September will look awfully dark. During winter, the shadows will be even worse, with some stretching as far as a mile into the park.
The video's moving shadows are what the Municipal Arts Society refers to as the "Accidental Skyline," a new side-effect of super-tall structures and what's described as "Midtown's race for views."
"Individually, the towers may not have a significant eﬀect; however their collective impact has not been considered," MAS argued in a 2013 report. Concluding that there is no one solution to the Accidental Skyline (not even landmarking the skyline itself), MAS has urged that the public to speak up when "open spaces are aﬀected by new development."