The Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) will undergo its own surgery, stat. The HSS just announced it is finally embarking on a $300 million waterfront campus modernization project that began nearly 30 years ago. With a $35 million gift from the philanthropist, Marina Kellen French, HSS will break ground this fall on its 12-story building that will hover over FDR Drive. 

The new EwingCole-designed 100,000 square foot addition will increase the hospital’s capacity by 25 percent. The building will house patient rooms, operating rooms, offices, and research facilities. 

The new addition (center) will connect to the existing building (left) | EwingCole architects

This expansion project has been in the works since 1992, but the special permits and zoning amendments required complicated the process. Additionally, neighborhood disapproval toward the project led to many conflicts. To this point, Crain's New York reported that Louis Shapiro, HSS’s CEO, said, "These are the last air rights we own and have full rights to. We have full intention to construct this building."

In reporting the expansion announcement, the New York Post stated, “Remarkably, no word of the plans leaked out in advance. Fortunately for neighbors, the project won’t block views from nearby apartment buildings—stopping short of 530 East. 72nd St., for example.”

Regarding the temporary removal of the pedestrian crossbridge linking East 71st Street with the river esplanade, Shapiro told the Post, it will be “replaced and be spectacular” when the job is completed.