NEW YORK -- Chanel is expected to nearly triple the size of its Manhattan store when it moves late next year to 15 East 57th St., down the street from its present location at 5 East 57th St., according to reports.

Market sources say Chanel plans to add 11 floors to the six-story building, where it has a 25-year lease, with options to renew. Currently, Chanel occupies a six-story building with a narrower frontage than the new one.

Barbara Cirkva, senior vice president, said only, "It [the new location] will definitely be higher than the existing building, but exactly how much higher, we don't know yet. We're working with architects to determine what works esthetically and what is financially possible."

Cirkva said asbestos removal will probably begin by the end of this month, when plans should be complete. She also said the fine jewelry collection will be given a special ambience, somewhat like a store within the store.

Chanel's current lease expires at the end of 1995.

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