Ritz Tower

New York, NY

Vertical Access was retained by Howard L. Zimmerman Architects to investigate and document existing conditions at the west and south façades of the Ritz Tower in preparation for exterior repairs and maintenance. The scope of work included hands-on inspection and hammer-sounding of the masonry and documentation of conditions using TPAS® with digital photography hyperlinked to annotated AutoCAD drawings.

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Building description

Constructed in 1925, the Ritz Tower was designed as an apartment hotel by the prolific architect of luxury apartments, Emery Roth, and by Thomas Hastings of Carrère & Hastings. The 40-story steel frame structure was the tallest residential building in the world at the time of its construction. The exterior is comprised primarily of buff colored brick, with terra cotta and limestone trim and ornament. Five setbacks, highlighted by ornamental terra cotta, lead to a tower with a pyramidal roof crowned with a limestone lantern and obelisk. The building’s decorative details are derived from the sixteenth century Italian Renaissance.


  • Gain hands-on access to representative areas as part of a limited façade survey intended to help understand the scope of work for a comprehensive exterior maintenance and repair campaign.


  • Documented cracks, spalls, failed joints, and other conditions.
  • Provided data on representative conditions, allowing for the accurate development of a scope of work for planned repairs.

Building owner

  • The Ritz Tower, Inc.

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