Terra cotta figures that adorned building demolished for One Vanderbilt construction seek a new home

May 4, 2017

A rescued collection of terra cotta building facade figures–including naked cherubs, smiling porpoises and the head of Neptune–that once adorned an 18-story office building next to Grand Central Station are in need of a new home. The building was demolished to make way for the under-construction One Vanderbilt skyscraper; at the urging of New York Landmarks Conservancy Chair Lloyd Zuckerberg, the new building’s developer, SL Green Realty Corp., saved the three terra cotta panels from the facade of 51 East 42nd Street. Warren and Wetmore, the building’s architects, also designed the station.

The individual pieces were placed in storage in Westchester–where they still remain–when the building was demolished last year. The Landmarks Conservancy hopes to find a new home for them, ideally in a public location like a building lobby. So far no one has spoken for the massive panels–the largest is over 19 feet high and the smallest is about five feet square. If you’re interested, you can call the Landmarks Conservancy at 212.995.5260 for details.



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