The Fifth Avenue is one of the major global areas of interest. It is located at the center of Manhattan’s Borough in New York. A section of the street crosses mid-town Manhattan and is lined with aesthetically appealing shops and ranked amongst the most expensive shops across the globe. The Avenue has consistently been ranked amongst the most expensive in the world.
Despite the changing economic conditions, the street’s section lying between the 49th and the 57th streets was ranked the most expensive across the globe in the mid-90s. The street housed some of the most expensive retail spaces based on per square foot cost. A Forbes magazine ranked the Fifth Street as the most expensive in the world in 2008. Amongst the most lucrative real estate areas of interest in the Fifth Street are the Penthouses which are perched on top of the street’s buildings.
Location of the Fifth Avenue
Fifth Avenue starts from Washington Square Park (Greenwich Village) and runs north-wards across Midtown’s heart along the Central Park’s Eastern side to form a boundary to the Upper Eastern side via Harlem. It finally terminates at the Harlem River on the 142nd Street. The traffic crosses Harlem River at Madison Avenue Bridge. The avenue further acts as the division line between House numbering and the West East Manhattan Streets.
Fifth Avenue’s history
Fifth Avenue’s high status was declared in 1862 after Caroline Schermerhorm Astor made the 34th Street’s western corner his settling place. The end of what was originally a stylish residential neighborhood was marked by erection of Astoria hotel at the place where Caroline home was originally. Many agree that the Street forms the main scenery in 1920 in Edith Wharton’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel “The Age of Innocence”, a novel that is known for perfectly describing the 1870’s New York’s social elite and in the process offers Fifth Avenue’s historical context.
Originally, it was a narrow thoroughfare but most of the southern part of the Central Park was widened (1908), victims being the sidewalks which were eliminated to accommodate the ever rising traffic. Midtown blocks which are currently famed as commercial were primarily residential until after the 20th century.
Landmarks in Fifth Street Avenue
A number of significant structures have been identified by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission as worth preserving. These include 500 Fifth Avenue Buildings, George W. Vanderbilt Residence, Aeolian Building, Goelet Building (Swiss Center Building), Gorham Building, Rizzoli Building, Manufacturers Trust Company Building, Saks Fifth Avenue, Sidewalk Clock, and St. Regis Hotel. Others include the Flatiron Building, Empire State Building, New York Public Library, St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Rockefeller Center.
Another interesting thing about the Fifth Avenue is the Parade route. It remains the traditional route through which most of New York City celebratory parades are held. This leads to closure of traffic in some days, particularly, warm weather Sundays. The famous and longest running parade held at the street is the yearly St. Patrick’s Day Parade.