Landmarks Preservation Commission

History, Landmarks Preservation Commission, Policy, Soho, Tribeca

Thaddeus Hyatt, Hyatt Patent Lights, vault lights history, glass sidewalks NYC

Vault lights in Soho, via WooJin Chung for 6sqft

“Viva Vault Lights!” wrote the Historic Districts Council in response to the Landmarks Preservation Commission’s decision to backpedal on its rules amendments, which called for “more oversight by LPC staff but less time for public review” in proposals for alterations to historic buildings. HDC’s celebratory sentiment is in response to one of the now-moot stipulations that Soho and Tribeca’s vault lights–historic, industrial-era sidewalks made from small circular glass bulbs–could be removed by building owners and replaced with modern sidewalks.

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Architecture, Landmarks Preservation Commission, Museums, Upper East Side

All renderings courtesy of Beyer Blinder Belle and Selldorf Architects

The planned expansion of the Frick Collection is delayed again after the Landmarks Preservation Commission decided Tuesday to not vote on the project, following hours of public testimony. Dozens of neighborhood advocates, preservationists and museum goers attended the hearing to discuss the Beyer Blinder Belle and Selldorf Architects-designed expansion, which would include 60,000 square feet of repurposed space and 27,000 square feet of new construction.

The plan would expand the existing Upper East Side building’s second level, add two set-back stories above the music room and an addition behind the Frick Art Reference Library. According to Curbed NY, critics of the expansion said the additions would be too large and block the design of the existing library. Despite a presentation from head architect Annabelle Selldorf, no decision was made about whether to grant the $160 million project its certificate of appropriateness.

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Harlem, History, Landmarks Preservation Commission

Photo via LPC

The Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) on Tuesday designated three blocks in Central Harlem as a historic district in recognition of the significant role African Americans played in social change in New York City and beyond during the 20th century. The Central Harlem District measures West 130-132nd Streets, the mid-blocks between Lenox and Seventh Avenues.

LPC notes how Harlem residents used residential buildings to accommodate cultural, religious and political activities, starting with the Harlem Renaissance through the civil rights movement of the 1960s. “This collection of buildings is exactly why we designate historic districts: it’s an architecturally distinctive and historically significant set of structures that together tell an essential piece of Central Harlem’s story,” Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer said. The commission also launched an interactive story map as a way to illustrate the unique influence of this district through photos, maps and video.

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Landmarks Preservation Commission, maps

The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) on Wednesday launched a new interactive web map that displays applications and permits for work on individual, interior and scenic landmarks, as well as buildings in historic districts. Permit Application Finder users can search by community district and work type, allowing the public to see geographically where LPC has issued permits for the first time.

“LPC reviews and approves thousands of permit applications for work on designated properties each year, and with this map, information on all of these projects is just a click away,” LPC Chair Meenakshi Srinivasan said in a statement. “It is an excellent example of how we are leveraging technology to make our regulatory process more efficient and transparent.”

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Architecture, Greenwich Village, Landmarks Preservation Commission, Union Square

827-831 Broadway, DXA Studio, LPC

Revised rendering via DXA Studio

Last November, the owner of newly-landmarked buildings at 827-831 Broadway, noted for their cast-iron architecture and as the home of artist Willem de Kooning, submitted a proposal for a four-story prismatic glass addition and landscaped roof terrace that architects DXA Studio say was influenced by de Kooning’s work. After sending the plan back to the drawing board twice, the Landmarks Preservation Commission on Monday finally approved the revised design, which reduces the height of the addition to three stories and places it more setback from the street. LPC recommends that DXA use a darker cladding material over 47 East 12th Street to give it a totally matte finish.

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Coney Island, Landmarks Preservation Commission

coney island, boardwalk

Photo via Shinya Suzuki’s Flickr

Ninety-five years to the day since it first opened, the Coney Island boardwalk has been officially designated by the Landmarks Preservation Commission as NYC’s 11th scenic landmark. The historic designation includes 2.7 miles of public beachfront, stretching from Coney Island’s West 37th Street to Brighton 15th Street in Brighton Beach. Since 2014, Council Member Mark Treyger has pushed for the boardwalk to be landmarked, but the commission repeatedly rejected the proposal.

“The Coney Island Boardwalk is as much a part of the culture as it is a part of the history of New York City,” LPC Chair Meenakshi Srinivasan said in a press release Tuesday. “It is a beloved public space that embodies Coney Island’s democratic spirit and reflects our City’s values of tolerance, inclusivity and equity.”

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Landmarks Preservation Commission, Policy

Photo via CityRealty

Earlier this year, the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) unveiled a series of new proposed rules, which the group said would streamline the application process and improve transparency. But the regulation overhaul, as 6sqft recently reported, has caused concern among preservationist groups, who fear that more oversight by LPC staff but less time for public review won’t allow enough input for public opinion and limit the opportunity for testimony and comment on applications. Following a backlash from the rule change, it was announced today that LPC commissioner Meenakshi Srinivasan will step down from her post.

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Harlem, Landmarks Preservation Commission

Photos via LPC

The city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) on Tuesday officially designated three East Harlem buildings as individual landmarks, marking them as some of the neighborhood’s most culturally significant structures. The landmarks include a former 19th-century meatpacking house and two former public schools. The LPC chair, Meenakshi Srinivasan, said the buildings were designated for their architectural and cultural significance. “They embody East Harlem’s unique development history and recognize the civic institutions and businesses that helped shape the lives of the neighborhood’s immigrant groups,” Srinivasan said in a statement.

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History, Landmarks Preservation Commission, Policy, Soho, Tribeca

Thaddeus Hyatt, Hyatt Patent Lights, vault lights history, glass sidewalks NYC

Vault lights in Soho, via WooJin Chung for 6sqft

Last week, 6sqft outlined the Landmarks Preservation Commission’s series of new proposed rules, which “calls for more oversight by LPC staff but less time for public review” in proposals for alterations to historic buildings. But these rule changes extend further than buildings–right down to the sidewalks. As Treehugger first pointed out, one of the LPC’s new rules pertains to the removal of vault lights–historic sidewalks made from small circular glass bulbs that are seen throughout Soho and Tribeca. As 6sqft previously explained, “the unique street coverings are remnants from the neighborhood’s industrial past when they provided light to the basement factories below before electricity was introduced.”

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Landmarks Preservation Commission, Policy

Photo via CityRealty

Earlier this year, the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) unveiled a series of new proposed rules, which the group says will streamline the application process and improve transparency. One of the proposed changes, which calls for more oversight by LPC staff but less time for public review, has some preservation groups criticizing the commission. Preservationists worry this new rule change would not take into account public opinion, as it limits the opportunity for testimony and comment on the application.

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