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May 2017

Application for restoration of existing cast iron façade elements and the addition of a new storefront entry, transom units and canopy over the entryway at 12 West 27th Street (South Side of 27th Street Between Broadway and 6th Avenue)

WHEREAS, 12 West 27th Street, located between 6th Avenue and Broadway in the Madison Square North Historic District, was constructed in 1912-13 as a store and loft building designed by architectural firm Buchman & Fox for owner Charles Kaye; and

WHEREAS, Most of the exterior of the original building remain intact, including original cast iron on one of the entrances; and

WHEREAS, The owner of 12 West 27th Street is seeking approval for an application of a Certificate of Appropriateness for restoration of existing cast iron façade elements and the addition of a new storefront entry, transom units and canopy over the entryway; and

WHEREAS, The freight entrance will be removed and the original cast iron material will be uncovered and moved to create a single building entry; and

WHEREAS, The new entry will no longer be symmetrical with the other bays or the entire streetscape on that block; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install a metal band/canopy above the new proposed entrance made of stainless steel  with LED lighting, protruding by 2 feet; and

WHEREAS, The symmetry of the ground floor could be kept by including another large show window when the freight entrance is removed matching the symmetry of the eastern side of the building and the historical usage of the show window to highlight the commercial origins/nature of this property; and

WHEREAS, The material and design for the canopy is not contextually appropriate for the Madison Square North Historic district, including the proposed canopy LED lighting; and

WHEREAS, The design of the proposed small transom panes of glass above the new restored entry also do not fit the contextual feel of the building or the district; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial unless the applicant:

(a)  Revises the design for the canopy by using a more contextual material other than the stainless steel and having the style pay homage to the original historic canopy design and the rest of the Madison Square North Historic District;   

(b) Replaces the LED lighting approach with a traditional lighting fixture, and not LED lighting on the letters of the signage band or projecting down as presented;

(c)  Maintains the original location of the restored entry to preserve the symmetry of the façade of the building and replaces the freight entrance with a show window similar to the eastern side of the building so that each of the three bays maintain their original design symmetry of the storefront level.

(d)  Revises the plans for the glass transom panels above the canopy/entry to be one larger pane of glass consistent with the original design of the property, instead of the smaller truncated panes of glass.

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22 West 27th Street, application to replace two existing elevator bulkheads with two new elevator bulkheads with painted aluminum cladding

WHEREAS, 22 West 27th Street is a twelve-story loft building designed by the architectural firm Buchman & Fox and constructed in 1909 for the Realty Holding Company, located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building has an exterior that remains largely intact; and

WHEREAS, The roof currently has two existing elevator bulkheads; and

WHEREAS, The building's two elevators are possibly original to the building and materials for major repairs are no longer available; and

WHEREAS, The building must replace these elevators and seeks to gain access to the roof by elevator in order to manage the transport of HVAC equipment and other needs; and

WHEREAS, The investigation of options for elevator replacement and roof access led to at least four different options in order to increase the size of the bulkheads as little as possible; and

WHEREAS, A number of these options were determined by elevator consultants to not be feasible; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is using the current shafts for the new elevators and have maintained a setback to reduce as much visibility as possible; and

WHEREAS, The increase in bulkhead size will be from the current 12 feet to 18 feet; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has demonstrated a commitment to reducing visibility to the least degree possible, and

WHEREAS, The new bulkheads will be only slightly visible from the street, most specifically from Broadway and 28th Street; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has demonstrated efforts to consider all options, reduce visibility, and consider various materials that will also reduce visibility; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board 5 recommends approval of the proposed application for 22 West 27th Street.

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110 Fifth Avenue application for the installation of new sidewalks including new pavement grading and sidewalk vault waterproofing repairs

WHEREAS 110 5th Avenue is a commercial building on the corner of Fifth Avenue and West 16th Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing the installation of new sidewalks for the building on 5th Avenue and West 16th Street; and

WHEREAS, The building's current sidewalks on 5th Avenue and West 16th Street are in disrepair; and

WHEREAS, The installation of new sidewalks for the building will include new pavement grading and sidewalk vault waterproofing repairs; and

WHEREAS, The new Fifth Avenue sidewalk will be elevated to a height that is level with the building's main entrance; and

WHEREAS, The elevated height of the new Fifth Avenue sidewalk will enable ADA access to the main entrance of the building; and

WHEREAS, The new Fifth Avenue sidewalk will minimally conceal the bottom of the building columns adjoining the main entrance; and

WHEREAS, The new Fifth Avenue sidewalk will cover the step currently used to enter the main entrance of the building; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five is appreciative and supportive of the applicant's plan to proactively, creatively and appropriately provide ADA access to the building; and

WHEREAS, The new sidewalks on Fifth Avenue and West 16th Street are appropriate for the building and the District's Fifth Avenue corridor; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the 110 Fifth Avenue application for new sidewalks including new pavement grading and sidewalk vault waterproofing repairs that will also enable ADA access.

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Application to replace the existing aluminum and glass entry door with a new steel and glass door within the existing door opening at 126 Fifth Avenue

WHEREAS, 126 Fifth Avenue is a 15 story office building, located at the Southwest corner of 18th Street in the Ladies Mile Historic District, constructed in 1900 by architect Robert Maynicke in neo-Classical style; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to replace existing non-historic entry door to the office entrance with a new steel and glass door within the existing opening, and replace a transom window with louvers; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new door will have a metal frame and metal handle, and more glazing than the existing; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new door will match the existing doors to the retail space of the building; and

WHEREAS, The louvers are necessary to provide A/C to the lobby; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriatenessfor a new steel and glass door within the existing door opening 126 5th Avenue.

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650 Sixth Avenue - Application to install an ADA-accessible ramp at Men’s Wearhouse retail entrance

WHEREAS, 650 Sixth Avenue is a prominent six-story building located on the southeast corner of Sixth Avenue and West 20th Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by Hubert, Pirsson & Hoddick and built in 1892, and features five large bays on the Sixth Avenue façade; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install an ADA-accessible ramp to the retail entrance of Men's Wearhouse in the southernmost bay of its three-bay retail space at 650 Sixth Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The current entry to the retail space from Sixth Avenue involves a single step access along with a secondary ADA-accessible entrance from the main lobby of the residential portion of the building; and

WHEREAS, The proposed ramp will be made of concrete with dark bronze painted metal railings, and extend 5'-1.5" out into the sidewalk and run 15'-4" in length; and

WHEREAS, The utilitarian ramp design is not contextual with the building or the fabric of the historic district; and

WHEREAS, Sixth Avenue in Ladies' Mile is a very busy shopping thoroughfare and the ramp will constrict pedestrian flow; and

WHEREAS, The other two retail entrances along Sixth Avenue in this building have sidewalk-level entrances with an ADA-accessible slope contained within their interior vestibules, and

WHEREAS, The northernmost bay of the retail space, currently used as a show window could be converted into a door that would be at grade level and eliminate the need for a ramp, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the installation of an ADA-accessible ramp at the retail entrance of Men's Wearhouse located at 650 Sixth Avenue.

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Application by 225 Fifth Avenue to install sidewalk planters on the east side of 5th Avenue between 26th and 27th Streets and on the north side of 26th Street between 5th and Madison Avenues

WHEREAS, The Applicant, the Grand Madison, is a high end luxury residential building located at 225 Fifth Avenue, facing Madison Square Park; and

WHEREAS, The building, originally designated in 1906 as the Brunswick Building, is constructed of brick and ornamented limestone and located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant seeks to install thirteen (13) fiberglass planters with a cement look, along the curb on the east side of Fifth Avenue and three (3) fiberglass planters with a cement look along the curb on the north side of 26th Street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed planters would be emblazoned with the building's custom logo and would contain plants no taller than three feet; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant would maintain the planters year-round; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant suggests the planters would serve as a necessary buffer between the sidewalk and the street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed planters are not original to the building or the Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Fifth Avenue between 26th and 27th Streets is not characterized by exceptional street traffic; and

WHEREAS, That corridor experiences heavy pedestrian traffic, often marked with crowded sidewalks; and

WHEREAS, The proposed planters would take up considerable sidewalk space; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant does not propose to coordinate the plantings with those used in and around Madison Square Park; and

WHEREAS, The proposed planters would serve as an obstacle to pedestrians walking on the block and an interruption to the historic visual corridor of Fifth Avenue; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the Application by 225 Fifth Avenue to install sidewalk planters on the east side of 5th Avenue between 26th and 27th Streets and on the north side of 26th Street between 5th and Madison Avenues.

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April 2017

Central Park Conservancy Restoration of the Belvedere

WHEREAS, The Belvedere is located to the north of the 79th Street transverse road; and

WHEREAS, The Belvedere was created in 1866 for the purpose of park circulation, scenic improvement and the erection of a picturesque structure that would command views of the lower and upper Park; and

WHEREAS, The Belvedere was originally conceived as an open air folly without windows and doors and to be used solely as a castle-like lookout tower; and

WHEREAS, The views and the context of the Belvedere has dramatically changed from its original construction once the Reservoir was filled and the Great Lawn created in the 1930s; and

WHEREAS, Significant restoration occurred in 1983, 1996 and 1999 which included reopening the Belvedere as a visitor center, restoration work, outfitting of the interior and construction of an accessible ramp on the south side of the esplanade; and creation of windows and interiors; and

WHEREAS, There is poor drainage and other issues that have created damage and wear including deterioration of parapet walls, of the wooden pavilions and the pavements along with staining of exterior masonry; and

WHEREAS, The scope of the current work seeks to restore the historic structure while modernizing mechanical systems and increasing accessibility; and

WHEREAS, The specific work includes restoration of walls and terraces, pavilions, pavements, interior features and windows along with the re-creation of coping and a wooden tower; and the fusion and re-grading of lover's lane with the historic access plan and;

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservatory seeks to evoke the historically straight path to the Belvedere originally contemplated by the Belvedere's initial plans; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five has found the Central Park Conservancy to use best efforts to preserve the original intent and character of the Park while enhancing accessibility, safety and attractiveness in its work; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board recommends approval of the Central Park Conservancy's application for restoration of the Belvedere.

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301 Park Avenue, Waldorf Astoria, application for extensive exterior and interior restoration and alteration of landmark areas

WHEREAS, The owners of The Waldorf Astoria at 301 Park Avenue are seeking approval for an application for a certificate of appropriateness for (a) exterior work including restoration and alterations to marquees, retail facades, reconfiguration of the porte-cochère and loading docks, the enlargement of selected windows, a rooftop addition along with new elevator bulkheads, and (b) for alterations to designated interior spaces including restoration, new lighting, flooring, and carpeting and the enlargement of the Lexington Avenue interior lobby; and

WHEREAS, The Art Deco twin-towered building was completed in 1931 with 47 stories by architectural firm Schultze & Weaver and was the tallest hotel in the world at that time; and

WHEREAS, The 1,413-room Hotel was recently purchased by Anbang Insurance Group and is currently closed for a partial conversion to a residential condominium; and

WHEREAS, The Waldorf Astoria's exterior was landmarked in 1993 and several interior spaces were landmarked in 2017, all of which will be affected by the proposed large-scale restoration and a partial alteration of components of both the exterior and interior of the building's landmark designated areas; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes full window replacement of mostly non-original windows to painted aluminum windows that will maintain the original details and specifics of the original design, and also proposes enlarging window openings by one-foot in height from floors 28-35 and 38-39; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes alteration and removal of non-original material to the street-level facades to accommodate new loading docks and new porte-cochère entry driveways on the side streets, and new retail spaces with restored or replicated decorative elements to all facades; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes alteration of existing marquees on Park Ave, Lexington Ave, East 49th St and East 50th St to include restored under-lighting and the addition of a modern-lit glass frame with hotel name, as well as the addition of a newly designed and differently proportioned marquee on Park Avenue for the condominium residences to the north of the existing main hotel marquee entrance; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes removal of exposed roof mechanicals, the removal of non-original set-back additions, the removal of non-original façade air vents, restoration of decorative elements, increased presence of decorative grilles above the Lexington Avenue marquee and along the side-streets to match original decoration, a full exterior building cleaning, and modification of tower grilles to non-original material with a similar look; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes addition of a penthouse level as well as two bulk-heads to the top of the building with minimal visibility, as well as the addition of non-visible terrace doors, dividers and railings on multiple setbacks; and

WHEREAS, The restoration of the interior spaces includes designated areas of the Park Avenue Foyer, Colonnade, Peacock Alley, East Arcade, the West Elevator Hall, the Main Lobby, the Main Lobby Hall, and the Lexington Avenue Foyer, as well as well as designated areas on Level 3 that include the Grand Ballroom, the Basildon Room, the Jade Room, the Astor Room, the Silver Corridor and various Foyers; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes removal of non-original materials from all of the above-mentioned spaces to be replaced with like-kind materials to match original materials, including light fixtures, plaster, paint color, vases, urns, doors and decorative panels that will be re-aligned for symmetry; re-installment of original cove lighting detail; general lighting reconfiguration; and replacement to modern spot-lighting that is less intrusive, as well as decorative lighting, carpet replacement, marble flooring installation; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposed to reconfigure the Lexington Avenue Entry and Stair Hall to provide a more dramatic entry that may have been the original intended vision, which includes removal of non-original escalators and a ceiling slab to allow for more light; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes to reconfigure the Main Lobby to include removal of non-original material, removal of the Peacock Alley cafe, and the extension of reception area into the non-designated current South Lounge while installing historically sensitive carpet and lighting, as well as restoring the rooms original symmetry; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to restore the Grand Ballroom with removal of non-original material including the center chandelier, removal of many layers of non-original additional lighting, and restoration of the balconies and ceiling cove-lighting; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, Anbang Insurance Group, and the architect, Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, have unequivocally supported the LPC's interior Landmark designation, and made every effort to use appropriate and noble designs and materials; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval with conditions of The Waldorf Astoria's application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for both the exterior and interior restorations and alterations as outlined in their comprehensive and detailed presentation made to Community Board Five, with the conditions being:

  1. The interior lighting of the restored and altered public spaces will be measured and soft, in keeping with the elegance and beauty of those spaces; and
  2. The applicant considers the employment of less modern marquee glass additions, in keeping with the original intent and design of those marquees within the historical context of the building; and
  3. The Applicant considers the importance of a symmetrical treatment of the Art Deco Park Avenue facade, including the relationship with and between the marquees for both the proposed residential entrance and the adjacent main hotel entrance; and
  4. The applicant strives to salvage and restore the historic fabric of The Waldorf Astoria's non Landmark-designated rooms and spaces, and that any original material being removed be re-purposed elsewhere in the Hotel or placed in protected storage; and
  5. The applicant acknowledges that all new materials used to match the historic materials will then be deemed original and part of the original landmark fabric of the Waldorf Astoria.
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1 West 53rd Street, St. Thomas Church, application for three proposed announcement sign boxes on the 5th Avenue and 53rd Street façade

WHEREAS, Saint Thomas Church is a Neo-Gothic church built in 1909-1914, located at 103 West 53rd Street and designated an individual landmark in 1966; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to add announcement two frames along the Fifth Avenue facade and along the 53rd Street façade; and

WHEREAS, On Fifth Avenue, the two frames will be bi-partite 4'8'' wide and 3' high, made of aluminum powder coated with a finish bronze patina to match the existing free-standing sign box, and covered with tempered glass; and

WHEREAS, On 53rd St., the frame will be tri-partite 6'11'' wide and 3' high, made of aluminum powder coated with a finish bronze patina to match the existing free-standing sign box, and covered with tempered glass; and

WHEREAS, The signs, although large, are not detracting from the architectural splendor of the church; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to install street level announcement frames on 5th Avenue and on 53rd Street.

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March 2017

138 5th Avenue, application for legalization of a light fixture violation “install light fixture above sign at sign band”

WHEREAS, 138 Fifth Avenue is a commercial building located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The retail tenant, garment company Lou and Grey, requested that a light fixture be installed to the façade to illuminate their sign; and

WHEREAS, The Landmarks Preservation Commission has issued a warning letter to the building owner stating the fixture is in noncompliance with CNE 19-2474 (LPC 19-1028); and

WHEREAS, The light fixture was installed without the proper permits; and

WHEREAS, The light fixture is of a design that is inharmonious with the exterior lighting fixtures in the Historic District as well as being historically inappropriate; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends disapproval of the application to legalize the exterior light fixture on the premises.

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160 5th Avenue, application to install an ADA Access ramp.

WHEREAS, 160 5th Avenue is an office, store and loft neo-Renaissance 9 story building located on the southwest corner of 5th Avenue and West 21st Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District ("District"); and

WHEREAS, The building known as the Mohawk Building, was designed by R.H. Robertson, and erected in 1981-92; and

WHEREAS, The 5th Avenue facade of the Mohawk Building is divided into four horizontal sections, distinguished by variations in window treatment, the rectilinear design of the facade, articulated by brick piers and horizontal bands of sandstone, emphasizes the structural frame of the building and restrained classical details highlight the geometric composition; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to install an ADA Access ramp on the 5th Avenue side of the building; and

WHEREAS, The ramp will provide ADA Access on 5th Avenue to the main entryway of Club Monaco which is a retail establishment in the building; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five is fully supportive of ADA compliance and the goal to make facilities accessible to everyone; and

WHEREAS, There are two alternative building entryways to Club Monaco, one on 5th Avenue that currently bears ADA accessibility signage and is being used for that purpose, and one on West 21st Street, respectively, that are convenient, compliant and do not require ADA Access ramps; and

WHEREAS, The proposed ADA Access ramp is not appropriate for the building according to LPC appropriateness definition; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to install an ADA Access ramp at 160 5th Avenue.

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420 Lexington Avenue, application for ground level facade renovation.

WHEREAS, 420 Lexington Avenue is a 30-story office building and an integral part of Grand Central Terminal known as the "Graybar" building; and

WHEREAS, 420 Lexington Avenue was constructed in 1927 by the firm of Sloan and Robertson in the art deco style; and

WHEREAS, The building had been modernized prior to the designation of the building in 2016; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has made an application for ground level facade application; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install a signage band with enclosed pin mounted letters less than 18" high which project no more than one inch, and to replace existing branding with the new tenant logo using pin mounted letters within existing signage bands in a manner consistent with current signage on the building; and

WHEREAS, The proposed banding will require removal of existing original stonework; and

WHEREAS, the proposed signage is consistent with signage and banding in existence at the time of landmark designation; and

WHEREAS, The additional signage and banding will add symmetry across the building; and

WHEREAS, While in most instances the Board would object to the removal of original material, in this instance the appearance of the building is enhanced by the consistency of the signage and banding across the facade, giving the appearance of a master plan; and

WHEREAS, This application is not to be used as precedent to remove historic fabric; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application by 420 Lexington Avenue for ground level façade renovation; and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five encourages the applicant to remove all stonework under the supervision of a conservator so that it may be used for future use or repair.

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699 5th Avenue, Breguet Boutique at St. Regis Hotel, application for exterior façade renovation.

WHEREAS, 699 5th Avenue, a 19 story luxury hotel known as The St. Regis, at the southeast corner of 55th Street was constructed in 1901 with addition in 1927 in the Beaux Arts style by Trowbridge & Livingston and Sloan & Robertson respectively; and

WHEREAS, The ground floor is comprised of existing non-historic storefront along 5th Avenue and 55th Street; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, wishes to: (a) replace non-original storefront on the southern bay on 5th Avenue; (b) replace existing metal and glass storefront windows with new antique bronze & glass storefront and the ground floor; (c) replace etched spandrel glass above with watch hands attached to the glass; (d) install new limestone cornice to continue the recently approved and under construction cornice from adjacent retail storefront to the north; (e) install cream colored canvas awnings with Breguet logo and non-illuminated pin mounted signage; and

WHEREAS, The alteration to the existing non-historic arches is appropriate, as it is a continuation of the existing recently approved Harry Winston storefront and doors directly adjacent to the North and the storefront bays' rhythm & proportion and aesthetic are appropriate for the landmarked building; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application by Breguet Boutique at St. Regis Hotel for a Certificate of Appropriatenessfor a new storefront and door for 699 5th Avenue.

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1158 Broadway, application to establish a Master Plan to replace existing storefronts with new storefronts, create new storefront openings on side facade at West 27th Street

WHEREAS, 1158 Broadway is located at the Northeast corner of Broadway and West 27th Street in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Per the designation report, the building was constructed in 1880-81 as a store designed by architect James Stroud for owner Christian Hanfield; and

WHEREAS, Most of the original historic facade of 1158 Broadway and adjacent 1160 Broadway was changed in 1959, designed by the architectural firm Telchin & Campanella, for owner Richard M. Piken; and

WHEREAS, The building was designated as part of Madison Square North on June 26, 2001; and

WHEREAS, The commercial tenant, Cha Cha Matcha, is requesting a Certificate of Appropriateness to change the storefront windows and entrances of 1158 Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The owner plans the following updates to the ground floor façade on Broadway:

            -New Sign Band with Painted Grey Aluminum Frame with Pin Mounted Letters (1'5")

            -Existing Painted Concrete Facade will be painted Lt. Grey (corner pillar)

            -New Transom Window, Fixed Painted Grey Aluminum

            -New Operable Casement Window, Painted Grey Aluminum (2x)

            -New Fixed Window, Painted Grey Aluminum (x2)

            -New Door, Painted Grey Aluminum

            -Existing Red Painted Concrete Façade to Remain; and

WHEREAS, The owner plans the following updates to the ground floor on 27th Street:

            -New Sign Band with Painted Grey Aluminum Frame with Pin Mounted Letters (1'5")

            -Existing Painted Concrete Facade will be painted Lt. Grey (corner pillar)

            -New Transom Window, Fixed Painted Grey Aluminum

            -New Blade Sign 18"x 24" Painted Metal

            -New Operable Casement Window, Painted Grey Aluminum (4x)

-New Entrance & Door, Painted Grey Aluminum

            -Existing Red Painted Concrete Façade to Remain; and

WHEREAS, The bulkhead will be raised to 3'4" for the new front windows on both Broadway and 27th Street; and

WHEREAS, A new awning will be installed 2'2" in height and 3' deep (4x); and

WHEREAS, There is no original detail remaining on the façade of the building to preserve and the changes will be made with materials consistent with the rest of the building and will not impact the historic district; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of Cha Cha Matcha's application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to change their storefront windows and entrances at 1158 Broadway with the following requests:

  • That the column on the corner of Broadway and 27th Street remain red (not grey)
  • That the windows be fixed and not operable.
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February 2017

12 W 19th Street, application to horizontally & vertically extend existing building; bring entrance up to grade; replace windows at existing front/rear façade; modify window openings at rear façade and restore historic cornice & façade materials

WHEREAS, 12 West 19th St is a four story Italianate residential and commercial mixed use building located on West 19th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue in the Ladies Mile Historic District, built in 1852 as a residence for G. F. Talman and exists in its current form since 1915; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to horizontally and vertically extend the existing building by adding a full floor and a rooftop unit, as well as a rear yard extension; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant will be adding three additional residential units to the building from its current two, bring the total number of stories to 8; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new storefront will replace a non-historic existing storefront and bring the retail entrance up to grade; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to replace the Building's windows at the front and rear façades from aluminum to wood; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to restore the façade and cornices to return it to its original condition; and

WHEREAS, CB5 is appreciative of the Applicant's plan to restore and maintain the historic features of the Building and to use original and noble materials when possible; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to horizontally and vertically extend the existing building; bring the retail entrance up to grade; replace windows at existing front and rear façade; modify window openings at rear façade; and restore historic cornice and façade materials in the Ladies Mile Historic District.

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150 Fifth Avenue: Application for construction of a rooftop addition including new mechanicals, light-well infills, window replacement, and entry modifications.

WHEREAS, 150 Fifth Avenue is located within the Ladies' Mile Historic District with facades on Fifth Avenue and West 20th Street, and is an eleven story Romanesque Revival building built in 1888-1890 for the Methodist Book Concern designed by Edward Hale Kendall; and

WHEREAS, This building has seen two large additions shortly after construction, including the 8-floor matching western-most bay in 1900 and a three-story ornate terracotta and copper rooftop addition in 1909; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to add a modern rooftop addition of two stories on the eastern portion of the building and three stories on the western portion of the building as well as the addition of new bulkheads and mechanical equipment; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes to infill two existing light-wells as part of the rooftop additions and building expansion; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes to replace all existing original wood-framed arched windows on the 2nd, 6th, and 8th floors with painted aluminum double-hung or stationary windows that maintain the arch appearance from the exterior (which is the current configuration), as well as replace two existing original wood-framed, pivot, circular windows on the 2nd floor with painted aluminum, stationary windows; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to replace existing modern aluminum doors at the Fifth Avenue entrance with modern painted aluminum and ultra-clear glass, and replace the existing metal and plywood paneling at the 20th St service entrance with painted solid metal doors and transoms; and

WHEREAS, The alterations to the Fifth Avenue entrance and the 20th Street service entrance are unobtrusive; and

WHEREAS, The window removal of existing original wood materials and opening mechanisms is unacceptable since they are highly valuable to the fabric of this building and to the historic district; and

WHEREAS, The rooftop addition is using modern design and materials of metal and floor-to-ceiling windows that are not contextual or appropriate for this landmark, nor is the bulk and height of the proposed addition; and

WHEREAS, The proposed rooftop additions would be very visible from Fifth Avenue, the most prestigious thoroughfare in our district and East 20th Street, which will heavily detract from the intricately detailed façades of the existing building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application by 150 Fifth Avenue for rooftop additions, light-well infills, window replacement, and entry modifications; and be it further

RESOLVED, CB5 urges LPC to deny replacement of hundreds of original wood-framed windows on this building with painted aluminum windows, which is a decision made by the LPC staff.

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January 2017

668 6th Avenue, Application for renovation of a storefront to include painting of the original front facade of the first floor, installation of new clear, operable windows at the existing window openings, etc.

WHEREAS, 668 Avenue of the Americas is an altered row house, built in 1851-51, located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The applicant, Tyler Lohman, owner of 668 6th Avenue Tacos LLC, is applying for a certificate of appropriateness for alterations to the first floor storefront with changes in window structure and size, signage, lighting and storefront color; and

WHEREAS, the alterations consist of

  •             Changing the single pane display window into a 3 pane window with opening                       mechanism
  •             Installing a blade sign the shape of a bull's head
  •             Painting the ground floor façade white

WHEREAS, some concern was expressed about the proposed white color of the storefront as it is in sharp contrast with the rest of the building as well as the neighboring storefronts that are dark brown or black; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds that the plan, for a three vertical-pane window with opening mechanism to replace an existing single large-pane display window that is typical of the small retail establishments in the Ladies Mile Historic District, is inconsistent with the character of the Historic District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to make the requested storefront modifications unless the applicant agrees to employ a single large-pane window in the storefront, rather than the three vertical panes as proposed.

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688 Sixth Avenue - Ladies' Mile Historic District, Application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to legalize numerous violations.

WHEREAS, 688 Sixth Avenue is a three story building located on the southeast corner of Sixth Avenue and West 22nd Street; and

WHEREAS, The buff colored, commercial-styled brick façade installed in 1915 unifies five formerly residential dwellings constructed in 1862; and

WHEREAS, There have been numerous tenant alterations to the façade over the years in violation of LPC rules, and there are now four commercial/retail establishments in the building; and

WHEREAS, The owner and two tenants wish to legalize the violations by seeking a certificate of appropriateness from the LPC for work done without a permit; and

WHEREAS, Some of the façade alterations / violations no longer exist, the current conditions include (but are not limited to):

  • Commercial signage installed without LPC permit
  • ATM machine and ATM signage installed without LPC permit
  • Security Cameras installed without LPC permit
  • Lighting fixtures and exposed electrical conduit installed without LPC permit
  • Non-contextual storefront infill and window fenestration installed without LPC permit; and

WHEREAS, The applicant's proposal for legalizing the violations is to simply list them and graphically depict them on an architectural drawing with any regard to their appropriateness to the District or historic photographs; and

WHEREAS, The signage is extremely overwhelming, cacophonous, and hides some of the architectural features of the building, the storefront infills are poorly designed without any concern for the balance of the building or its historic fabric, and appurtenances are not harmonious to the District; and

WHEREAS, The elements constituting the violations cannot be deemed appropriate and therefore cannot be legalized as is; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to legalize any of the outstanding violations; be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five strongly recommended that the applicant consider re-applying with a Master Plan to be followed by current and future tenants.

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December 2016

20 West 20th Street, application for restoration of the street façade.

WHEREAS, 20 West 20th Street is a 11 story loft building, designed by DeLemos & Cordes and built in 1901-02; and

WHEREAS, The façade is 75 ft wide, made of limestone, cast and wrought iron; and

WHEREAS, Although in very good condition, the façade is missing its historic entablature on the 10th story and its cornice; and

WHEREAS, According to historic construction reference guides, entablatures were historically made out of cast metal; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to restore the façade including the construction of a new entablature, replicating the historic dentillated entablature; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new tablature would be made of fiberglass and would run the entire length of the façade; and

WHEREAS, Although a cast metal entablature would be a more historically suitable choice, the proposed work is acceptable for this façade restoration; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to install a new dentillated entablature to the façade at 20 West 20 Street and urges the applicant to consider the use of metal rather than fiberglass.

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160 Lexington Avenue, application for a new stone canopy/awning over the entrance along with pin-mounted stainless steel letters above the existing address

WHEREAS, 160 Lexington Avenue is a five-story brick and stone neo-classical institutional building designed by Harvey Wiley Corbett of the firm Bell & Corbett, which was constructed in 1908-1909 as the Pratt-New York Phoenix School of Design and designated as an individual landmark in 1977; and

WHEREAS, 160 Lexington Avenue currently houses a retail establishment called "Dover Street Market, New York" which is one of a group of worldwide Dover Street branded retail establishments; and

WHEREAS, The applicant seeks a Certificate of Appropriateness to perform the following work:

  • Installation of a new open-top grey aluminum canopy/awning  (16'-3" front x 47 1/4" side x 15 3/4" height) ) with vinyl applied sign ("Dover Street Market, New York" ) above the entrance; and  
  • Installation of new pin-mounted stainless steel bronze letters spelling out  "Dover Street Market New York" of the same style and size as the existing flat pin mounted address "160 Lexington Ave." already hung on the 30th Street side of the building; and

WHEREAS, Although the Applicant's desire to advertise its brand is understandable, the proposed canopy is not the correct treatment as it is not harmonious with the proportions and original historical character of the building, its installation would be invasive to the historic fabric of the building, and it would obstruct the façade and distract from the neoclassical design of the building; and

WHEREAS, The pin mounted signage is discreet and is consonant with the existing address signage; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to install a canopy above the entrance to Dover Street Market; and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to place pin mounted bronze letters spelling out "Dover Street Market New York " in the same style and size above the existing address signage.

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226 West 46th Street, Richard Rodgers Theatre, application to add a new Air Handler Unit on the roof.

WHEREAS, The Richard Rodgers Theater (FKA Forty-Sixth Street Theater per the Designation Report) located at 226 West 46th Street between Broadway and 8th Avenue in the Theater District; and

WHEREAS, Per the designation report, the Richard Rodgers Theater was constructed in 1924 by Architect Herbert J. Krapp; and

WHEREAS, The Theater was designated an individual and an interior landmark on November 17, 1987; and

WHEREAS, The Nederlander Organization is requesting a Certificate of Appropriateness to install a new air handler mechanical unit on the stage house roof; and

WHEREAS, The new unit will be approx. 16' 11 ½ " x 15' 6 ¼ " x 8'4 ¼" deep (including metal beams/dunnage) to properly rise enough off the roof per building regulations for the connected ductwork & connectors; and

WHEREAS, The new unit will not be visible from 46th Street on either the west or east approaches and will be minimally visible from 8th Avenue, but without the ability to identify the building on which the unit sits; and

WHEREAS, The new unit will be painted a slate grey or beige color to help blend into the backgrounds of the neighboring buildings, and will be consistent with similar units on other historical landmarks in the Theater District; and

WHEREAS, The unit is located in a section of the roof with the least visibility and will not impact the historical glazed Terra-cotta Neo Classical Arcade/facade in any way; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval for aCertificate of Appropriateness to install a new air handling mechanical unit on the stage house roof of the Richard Rodgers Theater at 226 West 46 Street.

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November 2016

142 5th Avenue, application to correct LPC violation on the installation of a rooftop pergola.

WHEREAS, 142 Fifth Avenue, is a ten-story neo-Renaissance store and loft building, built in 1898-99, in the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, A pergola was constructed on the roof in 2014 without proper LPC permit; and

WHEREAS, The owner now seeks to legalize the pergola; and

WHEREAS, The pergola is made of teak wood and is 7'3'' in height, and 11'8'' wide; and 

WHEREAS, For the purpose of the legalization application, the owner of the pergola conducted a sight line study from 10 different view points in a radius of 2 1/2 blocks and found the pergola to be minimally visible from only one viewpoint; and

WHEREAS, The pergola is minimally visible from one viewpoint, between 18th and 19th Streets on the east side of 5th Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The pergola owners have made a good faith and exhaustive study to remedy the street level visibility problem without finding an acceptable solution; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the legalization of a pergola at 142 Fifth Avenue.

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212 5th Avenue Application for installation of a new painted wall sign.

WHEREAS, 212 Fifth Avenue is a residential building ("building") on West 26th Street bordering 5th Avenue and Broadway in the Madison Square North Historic District ("District"); and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for the installation of a new painted wall sign on the south facade of the building; and

WHEREAS, The sign will replace an existing faded painted sign in the same place on the top three floors of the building; and

WHEREAS, The sign will cover a slightly smaller area to enable additional historic fabric of the building to be visible; and

WHEREAS, The sign will be distinguished from the surrounding facade by a gray or black border; and

WHEREAS, The sign's background will be white; and

WHEREAS, The sign's print will be black and will display the building's address and a contact phone number for branding and sales purposes; and 

WHEREAS, The sign will be visible heading north toward the building as is the existing sign; and

WHEREAS, The sign is inappropriate for the building and the District because it is a new sign; and

WHEREAS, The sign is inappropriate for the building and District because it is a contemporary styled sign; and

WHEREAS, the sign is inappropriate for the District because it is an advertising sign; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for the installation of a new painted wall sign on the south facade of 212 5th Avenue..

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935 Broadway, Application for legalization of signage

WHEREAS, 935 Broadway, aka The Mortimer Building, is a six-story Italianate store and office building, with frontage on 5th Avenue, East 22nd Street, and Broadway, built in 1861-62, located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, long time tenant Restoration Hardware, has installed signage on the 3 facades of the building without obtaining proper permit; and

WHEREAS, The applicant wishes to legalize signage; and

WHEREAS, Signage is comprised of back-lit pin mounted initials RH located at 6 different locations along the three facades (two on each façade), and non-illuminated pin mounted name "THE FLATIRON GALLERY" at three different locations along the three facades (one on each façade); and

WHEREAS, RH signage is halo lit using LED and measures 9.5" in height; and

WHEREAS, Restoration Hardware signage is 4.63" in height; and

WHEREAS, The signage does not detract from the architectural and historic qualities of the building; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of legalization of signage at 935 Broadway.

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October 2016

34 West 21st Street, Ladies' Mile Historic District, application to construct a new building.

WHEREAS, This application is for a Certificate of Appropriateness for the construction of a new 6 story residential building, with partial 7th story and cellar, at 34 West 21st Street in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, 34 West 21st Street previously received a Certificate of Appropriateness in 2007 by The Landmarks Preservation Commission that has expired; and this application includes minor modifications to the ground floor; and

WHEREAS, The single occupancy residential building consists of a six story facade with partial 7th setback, not visible from the street, measuring ~16' wide, ~92' deep and ~79' tall, totaling ~7,250 square feet and

WHEREAS, The ground floor storefront is comprised of single car garage with double swing metal and glass doors at existing curb cut, and a single metal and glass entrance door, including ~3' high bulkhead and 3'high louvered panels above; and

WHEREAS, The street facing façade consists of a symmetrical tripartite design with light colored limestone piers flanking, black painted decorative metal spandrel panels and aluminum double hung insulated glass windows that match the profile of the adjacent building, and a GFRC Cornice to match the limestone color; and

WHEREAS, The rear facing façade consists of smooth modular Manganese Ironspot brick and large tempered glass insulated windows and doors to the terrace of the setback roof; and

WHEREAS, The lot line façade consists of Franklin Type 2 brick with lot line windows and an insulated metal panel on the 5th through 7th floor; and

WHEREAS, The overall design and scale of the proposed building is harmonious with the district, using sophisticated, well-designed materials, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for the construction of a new 6 story residential building, with partial 7th story and cellar, at 34 West 21st Street.

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Application by 900 Broadway to replace wooden windows on the 3rd – 10th floors with aluminum windows

WHEREAS, 900 Broadway, known as the Goelet Building, is an individually landmark building located on the southeast corner of Broadway and 20th Street within the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building was originally a six-story mercantile structure designed by the renowned architecture firm of McKim Mead and White and constructed in 1886; and

WHEREAS, The building's original sixth floor was demolished in 1906 and replaced with a five-story addition designed by the firm of Maynicke & Franke to mostly mimic the existing floors; and

WHEREAS, During the 1906 renovation all of the building's window frames were painted black in a deviation from the original design; and

WHEREAS, The building now consists of ten stories with stone and terra cotta façades wrapping around the corner of 20th Street and Broadway, creating the appearance of a single façade with three bays on Broadway, three bays on the corner, and four bays on 20th Street; and

WHEREAS, Giant arches articulate the building's two-story base, with original, complex window arches with fixed as well as operable sections; and

WHEREAS, The building's original windows on the 3rd-10th floors were double-hung glass with painted wooden frames; and

WHEREAS, The rounded corner windows on the third – tenth floors of the building are considered "special windows" owing to their unique curved sash and glass structure and as such necessitate a hearing by the Landmark Preservation Commission for alteration; and

WHEREAS, Over time, these original windows, some of which have been incorrectly re-glazed, have deteriorated and become largely inoperative; and

WHEREAS, In 2002 the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved the Applicant's Master Plan to re-develop the building's first two floors, including a proposal to replace the original wooden windows on the first two floors with equivalent aluminum units; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant-owner of 900 Broadway proposes to replace the existing wooden windows on the curved façade of the building's 3rd-10th floors with equivalent aluminum units in coordination with the 2002 Master Plan; and

WHEREAS, Replacement of the windows on the 3rd-10th floors was not considered in the original Master Plan; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has demonstrated that the existing condition of the windows on the 3rd-10th floors is unsafe and that the windows must be replaced; and

WHEREAS, The 2002 Master Plan proposes restoring the building's original color scheme as designed by McKim Mead and White; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant indicates that such a restoration requires the use of a particular automobile paint, which bonds significantly better to aluminum than to wood; and

WHEERAS, The Applicant seeks to unify the building with a consistent façade, requiring the use of non-original aluminum windows on the building's upper floors to match the Landmarks Preservation Commission-approved replacement windows of the first two floors according to the 2002 Master Plan; and

WHEREAS, Although Community Board Five always prefers the use of original materials in the restoration of Landmarked buildings, it recognizes the advantages of using aluminum for this particular project; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five appreciates the Applicant's desire to restore the building to its original appearance, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Application by 900 Broadway to replace deteriorating wooden windows on the 3rd – 10th floors with aluminum windows.

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1501 Broadway, application for 2nd and 3rd floor window signage.

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to install signage on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Paramount Building, at 1501 Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The proposed signage will be at least 18 inches behind the windows; and

WHEREAS, 1501 is an individual landmarked building and is not in a historic district; and

WHEREAS, Signage is 18 inches behind windows which has been allowed broadly in landmarked buildings as well as in landmarked districts; and

WHEREAS, There is no disturbance of any historic building façade; and

WHEREAS, There is no deviation from historic precedent; and

WHEREAS, There is no storefront work or exterior signage related to this work; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval for applicant to install window signage on 2nd and 3rd floors of 1501 Broadway.

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Central Park Conservancy project to reconstruct the West 86th Street – West 90th Street landscape and perimeter.

WHEREAS, Central Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux in 1858, is a scenic Landmark designated as such in 1974; and

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservancy had taken a leading role in revitalization and maintenance of the park since 1980; and

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservancy is proposing to restore the area between West 86th Street and West 96th Street along Central Park West and the Reservoir; and

WHEREAS, With increase in usage, the landscape in the area has deteriorated and is in need of restoration, and

WHEREAS, The lack of a comprehensive irrigation system in that part of the park has also created a "dust bowl."

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservancy is proposing to restore the lawns, to install an irrigation system, to add mulch to create an active play area around trees, and

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservancy is proposing to re-grade the paths to make them more accessible for people with disabilities, and

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservancy is proposing to renovate the entrances at West 86th Street and West 90th Street by replacing the pavement and sidewalk curbs and adding granite blocks that will also double up as benches, and

WHEREAS, The work is expected to get begin in January, and take up to a year to complete, and

WHEREAS, The proposed work and use of materials is tasteful and contextual to Central Park, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval for the restoration of this section of Central Park between West 86th Street and West 96th Street.

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The Waldorf Astoria Hotel Interior Designation.

WHEREAS, The Waldorf Astoria Hotel is a historic, landmark building located at 301 Park Avenue, between 49th and 50th Streets, and bound on the east by Lexington Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The Art Deco building was completed in 1931 at 47 stories by architectural firm Schultze & Weaverand and was the tallest hotel in the world at the time; and

WHEREAS, The 1,413-room Hotel was recently purchased by Anbang Insurance Group and is expected to close in 2017 for a partial conversion to a residential condominium; and

WHEREAS, In an effort to protect the vulnerable interior architectural details and culturally historical spaces, a review of most of the public areas has been completed by Community Board Five; and

WHEREAS, The Hotel entry foyer on Park Avenue contains almost all original Art Deco designs and metal work, as well as the famous "Wheel of Life" mosaic, and murals; and

WHEREAS, The Vanderbilt Room off of the Foyer on the first floor still maintains original marble columns with gold-leaf cornices and nickel railings, and its well-known patterned mirror wall theme; and

WHEREAS, The Empire Room off of the Foyer on the first floor, though renovated, was home to great performers like Count Basie, Lena Horne, and Dorothy Dandridge, who was the first African-American performer at the Hotel; and

WHEREAS, Peacock Alley, the South Lounge, the East Gallery, the Main Elevator Hall, and the Ballroom Elevator Vestibule are all public corridors on the first floor decorated with rouge French Marble and white marble columns, French Walnut paneling, and maple display cases showcasing historic photos and artifacts from the original Waldorf Hotel, the original Astoria Hotel, and the current Waldorf Astoria Hotel's past, with these areas including original decorative Art Deco metal work, silver-plate elevators, and hidden compartments; and

WHEREAS, The Main Lobby on the first floor is home to the largest hand-tufted rug ever woven in one location, as well as a 4,000 pound bronze clock with eight faces that was made for the 1893 World's Fair, and has seen countless world dignitaries and famous actors come through, and the lobby's towering columns, ceiling metalwork of various animals and scenery, desks and counters, and doorway detail have all been restored at various times in the past to their original splendor; and

WHEREAS, The Grand Ballroom on the third floor was the largest space of its kind when constructed, and aside from original Art Deco metal grates, railings, lighting, and decorative figures and animals along the private balconies, this space has played a significant role in global history hosting the first L.P. record ever played, World Peace Conferences during a time of war, was home to the famous April in Paris Ball, and even hosted various significant corporate events including car shows unveiling state-of-the-art cars; and

WHEREAS, The Silver Corridor on the third floor which was closely designed to resemble the original Peacock Alley of the old Waldorf and Astoria Hotels still features Edward Simmons' murals of the four seasons and 12 months of the year that were brought from the original Astor Hotel, and has almost all architectural details intact; and

WHEREAS, The Bull and Bear Steak House is furnished in richly polished mahogany in the English Regency style and is based on the original Waldorf Astoria Bar, which was a favorite haunt of many of the financial elite of the city, such as Diamond Jim Brady, Buffalo Bill Cody and Bat Masterson, and behind the bar are bronze statues of a bull and a bear, which represent the successful men of Wall Street; and

WHEREAS, The Astor Salon, the Jade Room, and the Basildon Room are entertainment spaces on the third floor that are almost entirely accurate to their original form, and have hosted many events since the hotel's opening; and

WHEREAS, The Starlight Roof on the 18th Floor played host to high-society of the 1930s and 1940s in the form of one of the most famous nightclubs and gathering spots of the time and, although it no longer features a retractable roof and open terraces, does still possess a pergola above decorated with gazelle and Pegasus motifs and decorative etched glass and mirrors from the prominent Victor White; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of interior landmark status for the culturally and architecturally significant spaces of the Waldorf Astoria, which include but are not limited to, the hotel entry foyers, the Main Lobby, the public gathering spaces and corridors of the first, third floors and 18th floors, various restaurants within the hotel, entertainment and assembly rooms throughout the hotel, and any other areas deemed appropriate by the NY Landmarks Preservation Commission.

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September 2016

23 East 17th Street, application to modify existing bulkhead.

WHEREAS, 23 East 17th Street is a six-story neo-Renaissance store and loft building built in 1902-03 in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to remove a small portion of the bulkhead at the front of the building; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to build an extension to the bulkhead at the rear of the building, and

WHEREAS, Although the proposed modifications will be visible, CB5 has no concerns; therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed changes to the bulkhead at 23 East 17th Street.

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July 2016

1155 Broadway, Application for New Storefronts and Appurtenances.

WHEREAS, 1155 Broadway (at the South West corner of 27th Street), is located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building was constructed in 1996 as offices and later converted to a hotel; and

WHEREAS, Signage, storefronts, canopy and awnings and appurtenances predate LPC designation; and 

WHEREAS, The canopy and awnings were replaced without LPC review in 2012 after superstorm Sandy and therefore are in violation; and

WHEREAS, The applicant agreed to return to LPC when tenant leases expire to accommodate a comprehensive upgrade of the storefronts and hotel entry; and

WHEREAS, Design decisions under this application are inspired by upgraded historic properties in the neighborhood such as 1140 Broadway, Nomad, and Ace Hotel, which were all reviewed and approved by Community Board Five; and

WHEREAS, Elements of the proposal include:

  • Structural columns will be clad in cast stone and capped by a decorative cornice,
  • Black granite bulkheads at the base of the building,
  • Storefront infill of black painted metal,
  • Uniform sign band and standardized lettering,
  • Second floor awnings will be replaced with black fabric san lettering,
  • Façade up-lighting fixtures will be replaced with a more aesthetically, pleasing fixture,
  • Security cameras will be upgraded,
  • A new canopy over an upgraded hotel entrance; and

WHEREAS, These elements are harmonious in context of this relatively new building and yet take inspiration from surrounding historic fabric; and

WHEREAS, the applicant agreed to:

  • Review and reduce where possible the number of security cameras,
  • Review the fenestration of the store front infill to make the configurations more symmetrical,
  • Take under advisement that the grandfathered large banner signs, while not part of this application, are not harmonious within the district especially in light of the renaissance of this section of Broadway in recent years; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for new masonry cladding, storefronts, entrance canopy, awnings and appurtenances at 1155 Broadway.

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1356 Broadway, application for signage.

WHEREAS, The applicant of 1356 Broadway was to come before the Landmarks Committee of Community Board Five with an application for signage; and

WHEREAS, 1356 Broadway currently has violations for exterior LED screens, over-window awning and signage over the main door; and

WHEREAS, 1356 Broadway is seeking an alternative that would correct the LPC violation while regaining the signage for Gotham Hall; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five received a booklet of many different renderings and an unorthodox invitation to serve as the design committee for this project; and

WHEREAS, The application was not appropriately presented; and 

WHEREAS, The applicant had originally agreed to pull the current application from LPC and welcomed the opportunity to appear before CB5 at a later date with a narrower scope of work, with full understanding that failing to do so would result in a denial; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant subsequently decided that they were unable to wait until our next scheduled public hearing and will instead proceed to LPC against our wishes; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for signage from 1356 Broadwaydue to non-compliance with their agreement with CB5 to return with a narrower scope of work before proceeding to LPC; and be it further

RESOLVED, CB5 urges LPC to only review matters pertaining to the current violations and for the applicant to return to CB5 should there be a proposal with any alterations unrelated to curing the violations.

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Resolution for St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

WHEREAS, The Trustees for St. Patrick's Cathedral are seeking approval for an application for a certificate of appropriateness to install vents and create a 350 square foot memorial garden east of the north transept doors.

WHEREAS, St. Patrick's is a landmarked building and the applicant wishes to install a perforated bronze air vent on the north retaining wall adjacent to East 51st Street, three air vents on the north ambulatory façade, and to house these vents in copper pipes to match existing copper rain leaders; and

WHEREAS, The applicant wishes to install a 350 square foot memorial garden east of the north transept doors, and for the memorial garden to continue the LPC-approved bluestone paving and curbs into this area, and to include a proposed 21' Carrera marble bench, a 21' Carrera marble curb inscribed with donor recognition text and a 5' X 5' X 18" disappearing edge pool housing a piece of brownstone from Old St. Patrick's Church blessed by Pope Benedict; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has previously completed appropriate historic renovations over the last decade at St. Patrick's Cathedral with Community Board approval; and

WHEREAS, The applicant and architect have made every effort to use appropriate design and material; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of St. Patrick's Cathedral application for a certificate of appropriateness to install vents and create a 350 square foot memorial garden east of the north transept doors.

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June 2016

1 East 28th St, Application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to remove the current roll gates and install awnings across three storefronts at 1 East 28th Street.

WHEREAS, 1 East 28th St, aka 251-253 Fifth Avenue in the Madison Square North Historic District, is a Queen Anne style flats building with ground floor stores designed by George B. Post, built in 1872-1874, and later altered in 1948; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to remove a non-historic roll gate and install a retractable awning with signage to replace signage installed without permit; and

WHEREAS, The current retail tenants are small business owners, including a mobile phone store, a barber shop and a food store; and

WHEREAS, The site does slope approximately 8 inches from the cell phone store to the food store and in order to place the awnings, the cast iron element of the facade would be penetrated — it would use the lintel of the storefront and the base of the window above — which is the only way, according to the architect, to attach the awnings; and

WHEREAS, The awnings will be black fabric with white writing and the intent is to provide a cohesive look throughout the building; and

WHEREAS, The awnings would be 8' across and come out 3' with an 8'' skirt; and

WHEREAS, The roll gate at the corner occupied by a bubble tea shop will be removed but no awning is being proposed at this specific location; and

WHEREAS, The signage that was there and that has since been removed was in violation and in addition to curing the violations at the ground level, it is apparently the landlord's intent to also bring the third floor into compliance and eventually submit an application to replace windows, paint the building and generally spruce up the location; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of a Certificate of Appropriateness to install awnings above ground floor entrances at 1 East 28th St.

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20 West 26th Street, Serbian Orthodox Cathedral, Resolution in support of the Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of St. Sava after its partial destruction by fire.

WHEREAS, The Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of St. Sava, on West 25th Street between 5th & 6th Avenues, was destroyed in a raging fire just hours after its worshippers celebrated Easter on May 2nd; and

WHEREAS, Although we are very fortunate that no victim was claimed, the four-alarm fire that started at 7 p.m. Sunday May 2nd , engulfed the whole building in flames; and

WHEREAS, The roof of the church collapsed but the brownstone walls still stand and they show signs of relative stability; and

WHEREAS, The church was designed by architect Richard M. Upjohn and was built in the early 1850s as the Trinity Chapel; and

WHEREAS, One of its earlier congregants was novelist Edith Wharton, who wrote The Age of Innocence and she was married in the church in 1885; and

WHEREAS, The Church became an individual landmark on April 12, 1968; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends that all necessary support (funds, logistics, access) by the city and the state be provided to the church and its congregants in this time of tragedy, including assistance from engineers and experts from the Department of Buildings and the FDNY and that the investigation of the fire be thorough; and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommend that every effort be made to have the building rebuilt and whatever remains be restored (The Central Synagogue is a prime example of a historic place of worship destroyed by fire and rebuilt to serve its congregants again); and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends that the site of the church retain its landmark status; and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board five supports every effort made to assist the church and its congregation and praises the work of the FDNY for bravely extinguishing the fire, and praises our elected officials, including Council Member Johnson, for their leadership immediately following this tragedy. 

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21 West 17th Street and 16 West 18th Street - Ladies' Mile Historic District, Application is to demolish the existing buildings and to construct a new building

WHEREAS, 21 West 17th Street is a Mid 20th century Commercial three-story building, built in 1850, altered in 1949 and in 1999; and

WHEREAS, The building is faced in red-orange brick, with a parapet, and four horizontal bands of raised bricks above the second story; and

WHEREAS, The second story has a band of wood-framed windows in the configuration of two single-pane stationary windows set between three single-pane casements with metal mullions; and

WHEREAS, A third story was added in 1999, after the building was designated a landmark, with LPC's review and approval; and

WHEREAS, Although the building has known a number of alterations in the course of its 166 years of existence, it is an example of the streetscape of the Ladies Mile Historic District that comprises low as well as taller buildings; and

WHEREAS, It is unrealistic to expect that any building of that age would not have undergone any alteration; and

WHEREAS, All the alterations done since 1989 have been performed with the approval of LPC, thus ensuring that they are preserving the historic qualities of the building; and

WHEREAS, A large number of residents of the community expressed opposition to the demolition on the grounds that the building is an integral part of the historic fabric of the district; and 

WHEREAS, The demolition of a 166 year old building in the Ladies Mile Historic District on the grounds that it has been altered too many times would set a disastrous precedent as many buildings in the district fall into this category; and

WHEREAS, 16 West 18th Street is a two-story converted stable located in Ladies Mile Historic District, built in 1867 for David Hoadley, an American businessman, best known for taking over the Panama Railway in November 1851 as the company faced bankruptcy while attempting to build a railroad across the Isthmus of Panama; and

WHEREAS, The first story has two aluminum and glass shopfronts and, according to the designation report, the building has retained its nineteenth century facade above the first story; and

WHEREAS, The four windows of the second story are identical one-over-one early metal-clad sash with stone lintels and sills and below the simple parapet is a narrow stone bandcourse under which is evidence of a sign or cornice which has been removed; and

WHEREAS, The building is one of the last examples of stables, characteristic of the early phase of development of the district; and

WHEREAS, Although the building has known a number of alterations in the course of its 149 years of existence, it is an example of the streetscape of the Ladies Mile Historic District that comprises low as well as taller buildings; and

WHEREAS, Although the building has been repaired, and restored over time, it has retained its bulk, height, articulation, fenestration, materiality, as well as color scheme; and

WHEREAS, it is unrealistic to expect that any building of that age would not have undergone any alteration; and

WHEREAS, All the alterations done since 1989, including the re-introduction of a wood cornice above the 1st story, have been performed with the approval of LPC, thus ensuring that they are preserving the historic qualities of the building, and

WHEREAS, In 2005 the applicant appeared in front of CB5 and LPC (LPC: Item No. 14, Case No. 06-1229, 16 West 18th Street (November 1, 2005) (Morris Adjmi Architects; Greenberg Traurig, for Schaeffer) to propose demolition of the building to make way for a taller tower, and both CB5 and LPC are on record rejecting the application for demolition at 16 W 18th Street; and

WHEREAS, Since 2005, parts of the façade have been repointed with in kind material (brick), under the auspice of LPC (Certificate of No Effect), thus preserving the integrity of the historic fabric of the building; and

WHEREAS, A large number of residents of the community expressed opposition to the demolition on the grounds that the building is an integral part of the historic fabric of the district; and

WHEREAS, Original historic fabric still exists, and

WHEREAS, The demolition of a 149 year old building in the Ladies Mile Historic District on the grounds that it has been altered too many times would set a disastrous precedent as many buildings in the district fall into this category; therefore be it, 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to demolish the building at 21 W 17th Street, and the building at 16 W 18th Street.

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23-27 West 17th Street and 18-22 West 18th Street - Ladies' Mile Historic District, Application for a certificate of appropriateness 18-6334 to install storefront infill and signage.

WHEREAS, 23-27 West 17th Street aka 18-22 West 18th Street in The Ladies' Mile Historic District is a neo-Renaissance style store and loft building designed by George H. Anderson and built in 1906; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to restore and alter the 17th street façade and the 18th street façade, as follows:

23-27 W 17th Street:

Clean repaint limestone base, restore wood frame storefront, install new sheet metal cornice to match original, install new painted sheet metal mansard roof and dormers to match existing

18-22 West 18th Street:

Remove the non-historic metal cladding at the ground floor, new wood/glass doors and transom at both ends of ground floor, new store front to match 17th Street storefront, new mesh louvers to replace existing at 2nd and 3rd floors, install new sheet metal cornice to match original, install new painted sheet metal mansard roof and dormers to match existing; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to apply an opaque collage style pseudo-historical fresco to block the view of mechanical equipment located at ground level on 17th Street; and

WHEREAS, Materials and colors used are contextual and appropriate, therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to restore and alter storefronts and facades at 23-27 West 17th Street and 18-22 West 18th  Street.

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893 Broadway, Application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for the restoration and alteration of the façades of the building at both Broadway and East 19th St., and a rooftop addition.

WHEREAS, 893 Broadway is four-story L-shaped converted shop and dwelling building built in the neo-Greek and modern style in 1844, 1873 and 1975, and has frontages on Broadway and 19th street which reflects the changing nature of the development of the district; and 

WHEREAS, The twenty-eight-foot wide Broadway facade dates from a remodeling of 1975 and consists of a glass and metal storefront surmounted by an anodized aluminum screen displaying signage for the Dumont Camera Corporation; and

WHEREAS, At 13 East 19th Street the building has a twenty-four-foot wide cast-iron front of the 1870s which remains largely intact save for ground story alterations and the addition of a fire escape; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for the restoration of the facades ("Restoration") of the Building at Broadway and at East 19th St; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration is in keeping with the original historical features of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include the removal of sheet metal, and the brick facade on Broadway and will be restored to its original condition, using cast iron; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include replacement storefronts on both sides of the Building; and

 WHEREAS, The Restoration will include wood windows; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include the removal of a non-historic fire escape on the East 19th Street façade; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include replacement of cast iron cornices in kind; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for a single story rooftop addition ("Addition") on the roof of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The Addition will be recessed and will not be visible from any thoroughfare, at any angle; and

WHEREAS, the applicant has agreed to increase the height of the bulkheads to reflect the historic condition found on surrounding buildings with original fabric, and

WHEREAS, The proposed alterations are very mindful of the historic surroundings, and the use of noble materials such as wood and cast iron reflect the commitment of the applicant to be a good custodian of the building; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the certificate of appropriateness for the application by 893 Broadway for facade restoration on the building fronts on Broadway and East 19th Street, and a one-story recessed rooftop addition.

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New York Public Library, Stephen Schwarzman Building - Application for alterations to the fountain basins for the main branch of the NYPL at West 42nd Street and 5th Avenue

WHEREAS, The Stephen Schwarzman building of the New York Public Library is located at Fifth Avenue and West 42nd Street, was designed by Carrere and Hastings, and built from 1898 to 1911; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has applied for a Certificate of appropriateness for Alterations to the existing two (2) Fountain basins facing Fifth Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The Alteration is to provide an amenity to the existing "Truth" and "Beauty" Statues and Fountain located North and South of the grand stair, behind the lion statues, by adding a four (4) illuminated arches of water & lighting to both each; and 

WHEREAS, The arching jets will be approximately 3'-6" high from top of stone coping providing a acoustic water sound from a bronze nozzle; and

WHEREAS, The fountain basins will also be equipped with four (4) recessed bronze warm LED up-lighting fixtures below each arching water jet; and two (2) warm LED Flood lights added to the existing, previously LPC approved, two (2) light poles located on the 5th Avenue plaza; and

WHEREAS, The proposed Gaco clear waterproofing liner being applied to the stone surface of the basins had not been mock-up and tested and Community Board Five  encourages the applicant to work with a materials conservator for compatibility and reversibility over the original historic stone; and

WHEREAS, Similar fountains have been successfully installed at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the alteration to the fountain basin will add visual interest and evening enhancement while maintaining the aesthetic harmony with the existing architectural elements; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the alteration to the fountain basins at the Stephen Schwarzman Building of the New York Public Library at West 42nd Street and 5th Avenue

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May 2016

Request by 2 Park Avenue to renovate and replace a storefront on 2 Park Avenue that deviates from the building’s existing master plan.

WHEREAS, 2 Park Avenue is an individually Landmarked building located on the west side of Park Avenue and has façades fronting Park Avenue as well as East 32nd and East 33rd Streets; and

WHEERAS, The building consists of 28 stories with a double height ground floor with retail storefronts on all three of its façades; and

WHEREAS, The Park Avenue façade consists of nine storefront bays symmetrically designed around a central opening; and

WHEREAS, The 32nd and 33rd Street façades consist of five bays each, marked by four narrow windows centered between two wider bays; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed in 1926 by Ely Jacques Khan, one of New York's foremost architects of the first half of the twentieth century; and

WHEREAS, The building, completed in 1928, represents one of the City's finest examples of Art Deco architecture from the period and remains the architect's premier effort in the Modern style; and

WHEREAS, Khan promoted the heavy use of terra cotta to introduce a variety and richness to the texture of the building's façade, breaking from traditional styles of architecture; and

WHEREAS, Khan employed the use of bricks of multiple different colors to clad the building's façade, in an effort to celebrate and reflect on the ideas of German and Dutch Expressionism; and

WHEREAS, The building's owner has created a master plan for the maintenance of the buildings nineteen total storefront bays; and

WHEERAS, The current design of the storefront occupying the eastern-most bays of the 32nd Street façade do not currently conform to the master plan; and

WHEREAS, The eastern-most bays of the 32nd Street façade housed the restaurant Artisanal for many years and were purposefully designed as an homage to the famous Parisian restaurant named La Coupole; and

WHEREAS, The existing storefront rests on a marble plinth and consists of five pairs of yellow painted steel and glass in-swing doors flanked by two pairs of similarly designed out-swing doors with fixed glass panels on either side; and

WHEREAS, All fenestration is located under two rows of transom glass and the entire storefront is covered by a cloth canopy; and

WHEREAS, The existing storefront has been severely compromised by water damage over the life of the previous tenancy; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has thoroughly demonstrated that the existing storefront's condition is inadequate and cannot safely be used in its current state by a new tenant; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has sufficiently shown that the existing storefront requires a full replacement, as opposed to a mere restoration; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant proposes to make all efforts to replicate the existing storefront's design, and seeks to replace the existing storefront with a near identical steel and glass system using similar materials to create similar sightlines; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant proposes to repair the storefront's marble plinth as necessary and to replicate the exact layout of inswing and outswing steel frame doors with yellow painted wood panels and thermally insulated glass under a cloth canopy; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant recognizes that the proposed plan does not comply with the existing master plan covering the rest of the building's retail bays of which it is exempt; and

WHEREAS, CB5 recognizes that while the design, which is to be replicated under the current proposal, deviates from the master plan, it is nonetheless appropriate and contextual and conforms with the building's overall spirit; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Applicant's request to renovate and replace a storefront on the 32nd Street façade of 2 Park Avenue.

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60 West 22nd Street, application for the removal of diamond plate covers and vault lights.

WHEREAS, 60 West 22nd Street is located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The existing sidewalk vault is currently covered with diamond plate metal; and

WHEREAS, The underlying structural steel support is badly corroded and needs repair or replacement; and

WHEREAS, An exploratory probe of the vault uncovered the original historic fabric – badly deteriorated glass vault lights; and

WHEREAS, The applicant intends to make necessary structural repairs and cover the vault with concrete to match the surrounding sidewalk; and

WHEREAS, The applicant was provided information regarding the availability of vault lights and vault light fabricators who can replicate the original historic condition; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for a concrete topped sidewalk vault.

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162 5th Avenue, application for a Certificate of Appropriateness

WHEREAS, 162 Fifth Avenue is an 11 story store and loft building located at northwest corner of Fifth Avenue and West 21st Street, in the Ladies Mile Historic District, designed by Buchman & Fox and built for Hudson Realty in 1903; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is the Flatiron Institute, a non-for-profit organization affiliated with the Simons Foundation, that is planning to lease office space under a 35 year lease; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to make changes to the outside of the building, create a new entrance on the West 21st Street side façade, and install machine work on the roof to operate an enhanced elevator system; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove louvered vents in windows on the south face and replace with matching windows; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove louvered windows on the north face and replace with matching two-over-two windows; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install new matching two-over-two windows on the north face; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to create a new entrance on West 21st street to replace an existing freight entrance cladding the walls with slate in an homage to chalk boards found in science labs; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to construct a new elevator machine room and two cooling towers on the roof; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to construct an extended boiler flue on the roof; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to replace two existing windows on the east façade with matching fire rated windows; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove louvers and replace with matching fire rated windows on the west façade; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove an existing large metal canopy supported by iron rods on the new West 21st Street entrance to be replaced by two modern bronze canopies; and

WHEREAS, Although Community Board Five finds the proposed windows reconfiguration appropriate and the rooftop additions minimally visible, the proposed canopies are too modern, out of character for the building and inappropriate; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application by the Flatiron Institute at 162 Fifth Avenue for a certificate of appropriateness to make changes to the outside of the building, create a new entrance on the West 21st Street side façade, and install machine work on the roof to operate an enhanced elevator system UNLESS the design of the canopies is reworked to be more contextual to the existing canopy as well as the whole building.

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230 Park Avenue (Part 1): Application for storefront alterations, entry changes, and installation of ramps as part of a Master Plan for the building.

WHEREAS, 230 Park Avenue is an Art Deco tower known as The Helmsley Building, formerly the New York Central Building, and was designed by Warren & Wetmore in 1929 and designated an individual Landmark in 1987; and

WHEREAS, The building is 35 stories high and bound by Vanderbilt Avenue on the west, East 46th Street on the north, Depew Place on the east, East 45th Street on the south, and contains the pass-through for the Park Avenue viaduct as well as two pedestrian walk-ways; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes the following alterations to the eastern half of the E 46th St façade

- install new 2nd Floor window assemblies in three bays,

- new street-level window assemblies in three bays to match the profiles and finishes of the original windows; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes the following alterations to the western half of the E 46th St façade

- lower the street-level window sills and match the existing window profile and finishes of the eastern half of the E 46th St façade,

- replace third floor double-hung windows with new windows that match the profile, finish and operation of existing windows

- install a matching window bay in the location of a current non-historical doorway, as well as installing an entry door and ramp at an existing window bay located closest to the pedestrian walk; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes the following alterations to the northern half of the Vanderbilt Ave façade:

-    lower the street-level window sills and match the existing window profile and finishes of the E 46th St façade;

-    install a ramp at the existing retail entrance on Vanderbilt Ave; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes the following alterations to the southern half of the Vanderbilt Ave façade

- match the existing window profile and finishes of the E 46th St façade,

WHEREAS, Two historically accurate cartouches located above each of the Park Avenue viaduct tunnels inscribed with the letters "N," "Y" and "C" (New York Central) are proposed to change to "H" and "H" (Harry Helmsley) as outlined in a deed restriction with the most recent sale of the building; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds that the applicant is restoring an original and symmetric look to both the East 46th St and Vanderbilt Ave retail facades using acceptable materials of steel and bronze, as well as matching existing window and ground-level bay profiles; and

WHEREAS, The ADA accessible ramp along East 46th Street is minimally invasive to the overall fabric of the building and minimally effect sidewalk traffic; and

WHEREAS, The ADA accessible ramp along Vanderbilt Avenue is moderately invasive to the overall fabric of the building and does effect sidewalk traffic; and

WHEREAS, The "N," "Y" and "C" inscribed on the East and West cartouches are historical to the original owners and fabric of Terminal City that once existed in this area and should not be removed; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval with conditions of this application to alter the North and East facades of 230 Park Avenue, as long as the "N," "Y" and "C" inscribed on the East and West cartouches remain intact since they are historically accurate; and be it further

RESOLVED, CB5 strongly urges the applicant to find alternative ADA-compliant access to the western retail space via the West Helmsley Walk to reduce the need for exterior ramps.

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230 Park Avenue (Part 2): Application for alterations to the East Helmsley Walk and the West Helmsley Walk pedestrian walkways.

WHEREAS, 230 Park Avenue is an Art Deco tower known as The Helmsley Building, formerly the New York Central Building, and was built by Warren & Wetmore in 1929 and designated a Landmark in 1987; and

WHEREAS, The building is thirty-five stories high and bound by Vanderbilt Avenue on the west, East 46th Street on the north, Depew Place on the east, East 45th Street on the south, and contains the pass-through for the Park Avenue viaduct; and

WHEREAS, 230 Park Avenue contains two pedestrian walk-ways called the West Helmsley Walk and the East Helmsley Walk, both of which contain advertising panels, retail shops, and bronze sidewalk-inlays depicting the letters "N," "Y" and "C" (New York Central); and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to modify specific storefront exteriors within each pedestrian walkway to match the configuration of historic infill with in-kind materials (limestone); and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove five existing non historic advertising panels in each walkway to replace them with five similarly-sized LED panels in the same location; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove the existing LED advertising panels at the south end of each pedestrian walkway and replace them with larger LED advertising panels; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove all non-historic overhead lighting in each pedestrian walkway to replace them with a new back-lit glass panel system; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove the bronze sidewalk-inlays in each pedestrian walkway depicting the letters "N," "Y" and "C" (New York Central); and

WHEREAS, It should be noted that Community Board Five did not approve the two existing LED advertising panels in 2013 for each of the south exits, and currently feels that the proposed LED advertising signage in each of the pedestrian walkways, for both the existing static signage on the walls and the replacement of the current LED signage, is too bright and too vivid in a building of such elegant and ornate history; and

WHEREAS, Although Community Board Five finds that the proposals to the retail shop facades within each pedestrian walkway will be historically contextual in materials and profile, and the overhead lighting proposal is a much needed update, the overall treatment is too dull, generic and unadorned; and

WHEREAS, The bronze sidewalk-inlays in each pedestrian walkway depicting the letters "N," "Y" and "C" although not original are historically contextual to the original owners and fabric of Terminal City that once existed in this area and should not be removed; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of this application for alterations to the East Helmsley Walk and the West Helmsley Walk pedestrian walkways.

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701 5th Avenue, application by a retail tenant for a new storefront and new door.

WHEREAS, 701 5th Avenue, known as The St. Regis Hotel, is a 19 story luxury hotel, at the southeast corner of 55th Street that was constructed in 1901 with addition in 1927 in the Beaux Arts style by Trowbridge & Livingston and Sloan & Robertson respectively; and

WHEREAS, The ground floor is comprised of existing non-historic storefront along 5th Avenue and 55th Street; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, wishes to:

- replace non-original storefront on the southern bay on 5th Avenue to match the storefront of the two adjacent northern bays;

- replace existing metal and glass storefront windows with new antique bronze & glass storefront

- replace travertine storefront base

- install new decorative ornamental steel entry gate & bronze door

- install dark blue canvas awnings with Harry Winston logo

- install non-illuminated signage

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds the materials, scale, and execution of alterations to be appropriate and historically contextual with the existing two arched storefront bays' rhythm, proportion and aesthetic; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriatenessfor a new storefront and door for 701 5th Avenue, the St. Regis Hotel.

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895 Broadway – Application for a master plan for a painted wall sign.

WHEREAS, 895 Broadway is located between East 19th Street and East 20th Street, with 25 feet of frontage on 20th Street, within the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, This five-story L-shaped commercial building was originally part of the Lord & Taylor Department Store, a Second Empire commercial palace designed by James H. Giles in 1869-70; and

WHEREAS, In 1914, the building was altered for use as a store and loft building by architect John H. Duncan, and received a neo-Renaissance limestone front on Broadway that is characteristic of the later development phase of the district; and

WHEREAS, The building's 105 foot wide western elevation, a secondary façade which was formerly connected to the now demolished store at 6-8 East 20th Street, is visible from East 20th Street and is faced with brick with no applied decoration; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has proposed a master plan for advertising signage to be installed on the building's western elevation in compliance with the underlying manufacturing district zoning regulations; and

WHEREAS, The proposed signage would be 32' 9" high by 18' wide with an area of 589.5 square feet, totaling 11.1% of the surface area of the western façade; and

WHEREAS, The proposed signage would be hand-painted on the brick façade and could change as often as every few months; and

WHEREA, The master plan would limit the colors and image coverage of the proposed signage, with different criteria for photorealistic and graphic/illustrative signs; and

WHEREAS, The proposed signage would not be illuminated; and

WHEREAS, Although the applicant provided an example of a current painted wall sign in the Ladies' Mile Historic District (at 149 Fifth Avenue), the Landmarks Preservation Commission has noted (in a recent permit for other work at that property) that the sign is a grandfathered condition; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five has not previously approved advertising signage within the Ladies' Mile Historic District and finds such signage inappropriate; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five is concerned about the potential for proliferation of advertising signage within the Ladies' Mile Historic District if any such signage is approved; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for a master plan for a painted wall sign at 895 Broadway.

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April 2016

2 Park Avenue, application for a certificate of appropriateness to install new water towers, construct an elevator bulkhead, and replace mechanical equipment on the roof, and replace mechanical equipment on the 27th floor setback roof..

WHEREAS, 2 Park Avenue is an office tower built in 1926-28 and designed by one of New York's foremost architects of the first half of the twentieth century, Ely Jacques Kahn of Buchman & Kahn; and

WHEREAS, The building was designated an individual landmark in 2006; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing the following alterations that require a certificate of appropriateness:

- Remove decommissioned chiller located on the roof

- Install two new water tanks

- Install new chiller

- Build new elevator bulkhead; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new chiller will not be visible from Park Avenue and will be minimally visible from 31st Street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new elevator bulkhead will not be visible from Park Avenue and will be minimally visible from 31st street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed two water tanks will be visible from Park Avenue as well as 31st street, and their presence is contextual with the south midtown district where the building is located, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a certificate of appropriateness to install new water towers, construct an elevator bulkhead, replace mechanical equipment on the roof, and replace mechanical equipment on the 27th floor setback roof at 2 Park Avenue.

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Application for replacement of existing wood-framed windows to aluminum-framed windows at 7 West 22nd St.

WHEREAS, 7 West 22nd Street is a pre-war 10-story commercial building built in 1901, known as The Spinning Wheel Building, designed by James Barnes Baker and located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District between 5th and 6th Avenues; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove the 9th floor street-facing wood-framed windows on the 9th floor (total nine windows) and replace them with aluminum-framed insulated windows; and

WHEREAS, 7 West 22nd Street is an 82 feet wide building that still maintains most of its original wood-framed windows on both the street façade and throughout the entire building; and

WHEREAS, The owner of this building is applying to Landmarks Preservation Commission to change all existing wood and metal-clad double-hung windows to aluminum-framed double-hung windows throughout the building, and all but the 9th Floor arched wood windows will be decided at LPC staff level; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five would like to urge the Landmarks Preservation Commission to take this opportunity to maintain the presence of wood-framed windows in this largely intact building, which is so prominent in this district; and

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of this application to replace the existing 9th floor arched wood-framed windows to aluminum-framed windows since wood-framed windows are not only the dominant window type on this building, but highly characteristic of the Ladies' Mile Historic District;  and be it further

RESOLVED, CB5 urges the Landmarks Preservation Commission to strongly consider maintaining the original fabric of this building at their staff-level approval for the remaining window replacements.

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114 5th Avenue, application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to install illuminated signage on the 5th Avenue façade.

WHEREAS, 114 Fifth Avenue is a neo-Renaissance office and loft building, also known as the Merchants' Exchange Building, built in 1909 and designed by Maynicke & Franke; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, LuluLemon, operates a retail clothing establishment at 114 Fifth Avenue in the Ladies Mile Historic District, and,

WHEREAS, The store now features an approved un-illuminated bracket sign protruding from the structure by 40 inches and supporting a 12 inch diameter disc with the applicant's logo; and

WHEREAS, Such bracket signs are used by numerous other establishments along Fifth Avenue from 15th Street to 23rd Street within the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant wishes to replace the existing bracket sign with a nearly identical sign of somewhat greater thickness that features internal LED lighting shining from the 12 inch diameter disc through the applicant's logo, making the sign visible at night; and

WHEREAS, The proposed illuminated sign is not contextual, appropriate or contextual for the streetscape along 5th Avenue within the Ladies Mile Historic District; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the certificate of appropriateness to install a proposed illuminated bracket sign at 114 Fifth Avenue.  

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1165 BROADWAY APPLICATION TO MODIFY STOREFRONT INFILL, REPLACE WINDOWS, RESTORE THE BUILDING FACADE AND INSTALL EXTERIOR LIGHTING

WHEREAS, 1165 Broadway is a five story office building ("Building") located on the northwest corner of Broadway and West 27th Street in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Building was designed by Charles Mellon and built in 1867 as a hotel known as the Coleman House and thereafter structurally altered and converted to stores and offices in 1906-07; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to alter the Building's storefront infill by replacing a hodgepodge of non-historic storefronts and signage with uniform glass plate storefronts and signage in keeping with the historic features of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new storefront will cure the numerous violations that the building incurred, caused by retail tenants; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to replace the Building's wood framed windows - including pivot bay windows - with new wood framed windows that retain the existing physical window profiles but without any pivot functionality; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to restore the façade by doing a thorough paint color investigation of the Building and to restore it to its historic color; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to install exterior lighting that will illuminate the Building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has committed to use subtle lighting that is appropriate for the Building and the surrounding neighborhood; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has committed to keep an ongoing channel of communication with the Board for feedback regarding the Building's lighting; and

WHEREAS, The Board encourages the Applicant to maintain and restore the Building's historic operative pivot windows; and

WHEREAS, The Board is appreciative of the Applicant's plan to otherwise restore and maintain the historic features of the Building and to use original materials when possible; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the 1165 Broadway application to modify the storefront infill, replace windows, restore the building facade and install exterior lighting that is appropriate for the surrounding neighborhood and the Madison Square North Historic District.

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March 2016

43 West 27th Street, Application to replace existing non-historic double hung windows on the front of the building with new double hung windows to match the historic ones.

WHEREAS, 43 West 27th St. was built as a nine-story store and office building designed by Louis Maurer and constructed in 1906-07 for the Advance Realty & Construction Co, located in the middle of the block between 5th and 6th Avenues; and

WHEREAS, The building is currently residential; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to replace the non-historic double hung windows on the 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 8th and 9th floors with new double hung windows; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is unable to replicate the original tilt-action mechanism on the windows due to the prohibitive cost of customizing and fabricating that mechanism; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to replace the non-historic double hung windows with windows to match the historic ones, including the configuration, finish and materials; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to restore the historic wood detail around the window bays by stripping, patching and repainting it to match the original condition and colors; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 43 West 27th Street to replace the non-historic double hung windows.

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121 East 17th Street, request for evaluation.

WHEREAS, The Union Square Community Coalition (USCC) has filed a Request for Evaluation (RFE) with the Landmarks Preservation Commission for a property at 121 East 17th Street; and

WHEREAS, The property is a carriage house, located on East 17th Street between Park Avenue South and Irving Place, and directly across from the East 17th Street Irving Place Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The carriage house in attributed to 1854, although it may be older; and

WHEREAS, The carriage house is a two-story brick structure with two exposed facades, a large arched central doorway fenestration on its main facade, and finely detailed masonry oculi windows, both on its primary and east side facades; and

WHEREAS, Over the years, the carriage house has retained its original fabric; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the USCC's Request for Evaluation (RFE) by LPC for the carriage house located at 121 East 17th Street.

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February 2016

75 Rockefeller Plaza – Application for construction of a roof top addition on the 10th floor setback.

WHEREAS, 75 Rockefeller Plaza is part of Landmarked Rockefeller Center, an Art-Deco style commercial, office and entertainment complex of 19 commercial buildings, covering 22 acres between West 48th and 51st Streets built by the Rockefeller Family; and

WHEREAS, 75 Rockefeller Plaza was designed by Robert Carson and Earl Lundin with Wallace K. Harrison as consulting architect, built in 1946 as headquarters for Standard Oil Company and originally named as the Esso Building; and

WHEREAS, The building, located at the northerly end of Rockefeller Plaza, has 100 ft. frontage on West 51st Street and 275 ft. frontage on West 52nd Street; and

WHEREAS, The current application is for construction of a two-story roof top addition on the 10th floor setback on the West 52nd Street side of the building, which will be an extension of an existing projection in this setback area; and

WHEREAS, The addition will be constructed of deer island granite (base), insulated glass (windows), painted aluminum (panels), and laminated glass (guardrail) and will be harmonious with, but distinguishable from, the existing extension; and

WHEREAS, The addition will be minimally visible from within Rockefeller Plaza, the corner of 52nd Street and 6th Avenue and one location on 51st Street; and

WHEREAS, The addition blends into the buildings beyond and does not detract from the architectural merits of 75 Rockefeller Plaza; and

WHEREAS, The addition is appropriate and respectful of the historic conditions of the building and the Rockefeller Center complex; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of construction of a roof top addition on the 10th floor setback at 75 Rockefeller Plaza.

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1501 Broadway, application for new 43rd Street main building entry doors and stone surround.

WHEREAS, 1501 Broadway, located in Times Square and granted landmark status in 1985, was built in 1926-27, and is recognized as an important building in the development and history of the Broadway theater district; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by the firm of Rapp & Rapp, acclaimed as the designers of elaborate movie theaters during that period; and

WHEREAS, Beyond its value in theatrical history, 1501 Broadway is architecturally significant as a particularly strong example of the innovative setback skyscraper type of the 1920s; and

WHEREAS, 1501 Broadway was the tallest structure on Broadway north of the Woolworth Building at the time of its completion; and

WHEREAS, The owners have, in recent years, been granted approval for work on various components of the structure, including the marquee and signage; and

WHEREAS, The current application comprises requests for new entry doors at the 43rd Street frontage and the stone surround; and

WHEREAS, The design includes use of bronze and Indiana limestone, and proposes to replicate the historical bronze molding from the Broadway façade; and

WHEREAS, The proposed alteration is harmonious to both the historic record and the careful renovations made to the building to-date; and

WHEREAS, The materials being proposed for 43rd Street have been chosen to match original building materials and the Broadway façade; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five urges LPC to work with the building owner to develop a master plan for ground floor alterations that will offer a comprehensive alteration agreement rather than the piecemeal approach chosen so far; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for new 43rd Street main building entry doors and stone surround for 1501 Broadway and urges applicant to develop a master plan.

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December 2015

Engine Company Number 23, 215 West 58th Street – Application for certificate of appropriateness to install new partially visible kitchen exhaust silencer on roof

WHEREAS, Engine Company Number 23, built in 1905-06 and designated as an individual landmark in 1989, was designed by Alexander H. Stevens in a straightforward Beaux-Arts style that served as a model for subsequent firehouse design; and

WHEREAS, Due of the surrounding residential construction, the kitchen exhaust system on the roof is required to have a silencer; and

WHEREAS, The kitchen exhaust silencer is partially visible along a small section the south side of 58th Street and requires a public hearing before the Landmarks Preservation Commission; and

WHEREAS, The kitchen exhaust silencer rises 11' 4" above the roof and is made of stainless steel; and

WHEREAS, Due to code requirements with respect to distance from the surrounding buildings, the kitchen exhaust silencer cannot be located where it is not visible from the street; and

WHEREAS, The kitchen exhaust silencer will be less visible than an existing boiler flue which is being removed from the roof and will blend into the backdrop of the surrounding taller buildings; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the installation of a new partially visible kitchen exhaust silencer on the roof of Engine Company Number 23 at 215 West 58th Street.

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625 Fifth Avenue (bet. 50th & 51st Streets), Cathedral of Saint Patrick, Certificate of Appropriateness.

WHEREAS, 625 Fifth Avenue, commonly known as St. Patrick's Cathedral,located between 50th & 51st Streets,and Lady Chapel, and Rectory and Cardinal's Residence, located at 460 Madison Avenue and 452 Madison Avenue respectively, are among New York City's most prominent and beloved Landmarks;

WHEREAS, The Neo-Gothic style Roman Catholic cathedral church, built in 1858 -1879, was designed by James Renwick Jr., and the Lady Chapel, built in 1906 was designed by Charles T. Mathews, and the Rectory and Cardinal's residence built in 1880, was designed by James Renwick Jr., and

WHEREAS, In addition to the structures, the landmark sites consist of two landscaped areas on 50 and 51st street; and

WHEREAS, The entire site was designated as an individual Landmark in May 1966; and

WHEREAS, It is the seat of the archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York, as well as a parish church; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install a secured vehicle entrance on East 50th street, which will consist of a low rectilinear structure in new flamed schist cladding to match terrace retaining wall stone; and

WHEREAS, The structure will be approximately 670 square feet; approximately 23 foot long x 29 foot deep x 10 feet tall, with 2 bronze-clad swing doors leading to a secure vehicular parking garage where an interior stair leads to the Cardinal's private residence; and

WHEREAS, The approximately 11 foot width of the original schist retaining wall will be removed and replaced with a mid-block curb cut and a new black painted metal swing gate to match the existing areaway fencing and existing gates, for which the applicant will apply for proper Department of City Planning and Department of Transportation approval; and

WHEREAS, The exterior of the proposed garage will be richly landscaped to blend into the surrounding trees and planted areas with planting beds all-around the structure and a green roof with 5 inch non-deciduous pre-vegetated tiles on top to conceal the structure; and

WHEREAS, The vestibule passageway from the garage to the residence will be enclosed and clad in Tuckahoe marble to match Cardinal Residence and will connect to the existing kitchen door in the areaway, relocating the existing wrought iron decorative arched door; and

WHEREAS, The design is minimally intrusive and harmonious amongst the landscape and hardscape; and

WHEREAS, CB5 applauds the dedication and 3-year effort of exterior stone conservation, interior stone, wood and plaster restoration, and stained glass stabilization and conservation, and encourages salvaging and storing the original schist retaining wall for future use, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for the building of a new secure vehicular entrance to 625 Fifth Avenue.

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1145 Broadway, Application for Certificate of Appropriateness for façade restoration on the building front, rear yard five story extension to the building rear and elevator and stair bulkhead extension on the building roof.

WHEREAS, 1145 Broadway is a five story office building ("Building"), located in the Madison Square North Historic District, originally built in 1854 as a house, located near the northwest corner of Broadway and West 26th Street in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for the restoration of the facade ("Restoration") on the front of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration is in keeping with the original historical features of the Building;

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include the brick facade being restored to its original red color; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include a replacement storefront primarily constructed of metal; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include wood windows with exterior metal cladding; and

WHEREAS, The Restoration will include replacement cornices made of fiberglass; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for a vertical five story extension ("Extension") in the rear of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The Extension will extend to the Building's rear property line, in compliance with existing zoning code; and

WHEREAS, The Extension will be fully surrounded by adjacent buildings; and

WHEREAS, The Extension will not be visible from any streets; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for an elevator and stair bulkhead ("Bulkhead") on the roof of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The Bulkhead's visibility is modest and in keeping with the visibility of other rooftop structures on buildings on the block and in the nearby surrounding area; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recommends that the Restoration incorporates a more substantial use of materials made of wood; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recommends that the Restoration restore the facade to its original color by stripping the bricks instead of painting them; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the certificate of appropriateness for the application at 1145 Broadway for facade restoration on the building front, five-story extension to the building rear and elevator and stair bulkhead on the building roof.

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Application for Certificate of Appropriateness for Seasonal Programming in Bryant Park.

WHEREAS, Bryant Park (including all the plazas and walkways surrounding the New York Public Library) is designated a scenic landmark and the New York Public Library is designated an historic landmark by the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC); and

WHEREAS, Bryant Park Corporation (BPC) has the responsibility for maintenance and programming in the park, which sees approximately six million visitors per year; and

WHEREAS, Said programming and concessions are necessary as the sole source of revenue from which to maintain the park, including a staff of 60; and

WHEREAS, The LPC and Department of Parks and Recreation have oversight responsibilities for BPC and each agency requires a Master Plan for the protection, conservation, and restoration of park assets associated with events and activities; and

WHEREAS, The former 3-year master plan will expire soon and the BPC is re-submitting it's Master Plan, to be approved for an as-yet-undetermined term; and

WHEREAS, Events are classified as seasonal installations (i.e. Winter Village and summer film screenings) or temporary, short term installations (i.e.  Habitat for Humanity, Hester Street Fair); and

WHEREAS, BPC had detailed the measures taken to protect and maintain the park elements (lawn, pavement gravel path, masonry structures, monuments, etc.) for both types of installations; and

WHEREAS, Implementation of the Master Plan has proven to be effective in preserving the visual, architectural and botanical resources over the past three years; and

WHEREAS, BPC is continually improving upon and refining the Master Plan to benefit the park; therefore be it

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Application for a certificate of appropriateness to replace sidewalk surface and paving around the New York Public Library Stephen Schwarzman Building

WHEREAS, The New York Public Library Stephen Schwarzman Building (the Building) at 5th Avenue between 40th and 42nd Streets is an individual landmark, and Bryant Park is a scenic landmark abutting this Building; and

WHEREAS, The NYPL is proposing to replace, restore or repair the curbs, sidewalks and walkway surfaces around the Building; and

WHEREAS, The curbs, sidewalks and walkways have deteriorated over the years and are in need of repair or replacement; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to replace the perimeter of Bryant Park curbs with Standard DOT Grey Granite; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to repair or reset wide granite curb as necessary around the NYPL perimeter; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to replace sidewalk pavements as follows:

  • New landmarks gray concrete with joint pattern to simulate large bluestone pavement on portions of 40th and 42nd Streets
  • New bluestone pavement to match existing large flags on portions of 42nd Street
  • Repair/Replace existing bluestone as necessary on 40th Street; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to replace the Upper Terrace surface with new brick to match the color and beveling of the existing, with a pattern that follows the original design; and

WHEREAS, All proposed work is well researched, materials are suitable, alterations are necessary and appropriate for both landmark sites; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a certificate of appropriateness to replace curbs, sidewalk surface and paving around the New York Public Library Stephen Schwarzman Building.

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November 2015

240 West 44th Street, Helen Hayes Theatre (the Little Theatre), application for replacement of the existing, non-contributing annex to the west of the theater with a new structure

WHEREAS, 240 West 44th Street, originally known as the Little Theatre and, since 1983 known as the Helen Hayes Theatre, was built in 1912 by the architects Ingalls & Hoffman; and

WHEREAS, The Helen Hayes Theatre is an interior and exterior landmark, designated by LPC in 1987; and

WHEREAS, The theatre represented a new direction in Broadway theaters towards a more intimate, Neo-Georgian design created for appropriate new plays; and

WHEREAS, The theatre has the smallest capacity on Broadway, originally 299 seats and now 499 seats; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to demolish the annex, a non-contributing four-story building that was added to the theater, to rebuild it with a straight front wall four-story building topped with a slightly visible bulkhead; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to rebuild the western-most staircase, currently located between the annex and the main building of the theater, to provide better accessibility to the upper floor of the theater; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to enlarge the doors leading to the auditorium of the theater; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to rebuild the marquee flanking the annex to the same footprint but using LED lighting; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to paint the lobby white; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to paint the interior of the theater auditorium with an immersive conceptual blue pixelated image from a Corot painting, in a modern homage to an existing tapestry; and

WHEREAS, The proposed façade changes will upgrade the signage elements and marquee, maintaining the same location and general size; and

WHEREAS, The building of a new annex to the west of the theatre will replace a non-contributing building that was not part of the original structure; and

WHEREAS, The new annex closely reflects the simple annex it will replace with changes required for the theatrical needs of the St. James Theatre immediately to its west; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has agreed to consider a lobby color closer to the original pale gray; and

WHEREAS, This modern look will not affect any historic materials but better reflect the brand and tone of the new owner, the non-profit Second Stage Theater; therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed application for 240 West 44th Street (the Helen Hayes Theatre) to demolish the annex and rebuild it with a straight front wall four-story building topped with a slightly visible bulkhead, to replace the marquee and alter the lobby, stairs and paint color.

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404 5th Avenue, application for façade renovation.

WHEREAS, 402-404 Fifth Avenue, aka The Stewart & Company Building, is a commercial building designed by Warren and Wetmore, in 1914 and reflects the unusual combination of diverse influences such as the 18th century British neo-Classical movement and the late 19th century Chicago School of Architecture style; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, Redken, proposes a new partial storefront façade renovation on the southernmost section of the Stewart and Company Building; and

WHEREAS, The original storefront of the Stewart and Co. retail level featured recessed entries with flanking window displays for viewing; and

WHEREAS, The proposed design of the Redken store utilizes the same idea, offering a recessed central entranceway with large glass displays to either side; and

WHEREAS, Above the clear glass displays, the renovated façade proposal includes a metal window frame transom with white opaque glass, which is reminiscent of the original clerestory glazing found on the building in 1914; and

WHEREAS, the proposed alteration is historically contextual and should be used as a design guiding principle for future façade ground floor alterations, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application at 402-404 Fifth Avenue.

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920 Broadway, application to enlarge elevator bulkhead and to extend elevator to the roof of the building.

WHEREAS, 920 Broadway is a sixteen-story neo-Renaissance store and loft building, designed by Schwartz & Gross and built in 1916-17 located on the southeast corner of Broadway and East 21st Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to enlarge the bulkhead on the roof of the Building; and 

WHEREAS, The bulkhead will stand about twice its existing height above the roof of the Building; and 

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to extend an elevator to the roof of the Building; and 

WHEREAS, The roof will only be used for Building maintenance purposes; and

WHEREAS, The visibility of the Bulkhead and Elevator are modest and in keeping with the visibility of other rooftop structures on the Building and other buildings on the block and in the nearby surrounding area; and 

WHEREAS, The Applicant will consult LPC regarding the color of the bulkhead and elevator; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to enlarge the elevator bulkhead and to extend the elevator to the roof of 920 Broadway.

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1564-1566 Broadway (bet. 47th and 48th Streets), Palace Theater, application for certificate of appropriateness for the redevelopment of the interior landmark theater

WHEREAS, Applicant is applying for a Certificate of Appropriateness to alter and relocate the interior of the Palace Theater, an individual landmark; and

WHEREAS, The Palace Theater, located at 1564-1566 Broadway, in Times Square Theater District, on the east side of Seventh Avenue at the corner of 47th, is a one of Broadway's most famous and largest theaters, built in 1912-13 and designed by Kirchhoff & Rose Architects; and

WHEREAS, It was designated as an interior Landmark in July 1987; and

WHEREAS, The interior landmark consists of the auditorium, the stage, the first floor balcony interiors consisting of the first balcony, the upper part of the auditorium, the second balcony interiors consisting of the second balcony, upper part of the auditorium and ceiling; and

WHEREAS, The fixtures and interior components of the spaces including wall and ceiling surfaces, doors, stair railings, attached decorative elements are part of the landmarked interior; and

WHEREAS, The Palace Theater interior survives today as one of the historic theater interiors that symbolizes American theater for both New York and for the nation; and

WHEREAS, It is among the oldest theaters surviving in NYC; built for producer Martin Beck as a vaudeville theater, and representing a unique aspect of the city and the nation's theatrical history; and

WHEREAS, The Palace interior is an extravagant baroque design incorporating high relief ornamental plaster work, double balcony auditorium with multiple boxes and loges on three levels, unusually high and wide proscenium arch, large stage and promenade areas, reflecting lavish productions; and

WHEREAS, The palatial 1743 seat auditorium is an extravagantly adorned legacy of its vaudeville history, and continues to provide a plush setting for the productions now presented there; and

WHEREAS, In the early 1990's the building in which the Palace sits underwent a major renovation to a 40-story hotel above the theatre, and now the building is being redeveloped with four stories of retail below the theater and three levels of entertainment pre-function space adjacent to the theater and entertainment above; and

WHEREAS, The existing theater will be restored and raised 28 feet above its current location via structural engineering consisting of jacking up the theater with temporary shoring, columns & supports creating a protective crate around the theater; and

WHEREAS, The proposed alteration would create approximately an additional 10,000 square feet of theater space & support stage space, including 13 additional seats, accessible seating, additional ADA compliant restrooms, a new 19' x 30' entrance sequence on West 47th Street with a new marquee, which will have a grand presence on the street; and

WHEREAS, The non-original lighting booth will be removed, new egress stairs will be built, non-original egress doors will be removed, some original marble banisters will be removed to create access to the exit; and

WHEREAS, A new chandelier to match the historically original will be installed, existing lighting will be restored, recessed 1970-1980's down lights will removed, non-original exit doors will be replaced with wood paneled doors to match original; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five urges theater and developer to salvage and properly store original fabric; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five applauds the restorative work to the theater, and requests that the applicant return when a schematic design of the entrance is developed and encourages historic reference to recall the original Broadway entrance in the design implementation; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to relocate and alter the theater interior at 1564-1566 Broadway.

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September 2015

11 West 18th Street, Apt. 3W, application to replace windows in Ladies’ Mile Historic District.

WHEREAS, 11-13 West 18th Street is an early 20th Century Commercial style building, converted to residential,  built in 1921, in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, the condominium owner of apartment 3W, wishes to replace five (5) non-historic, south-facing, aluminum-clad windows on the third story of the front façade of the building, currently configured with two (2) double-hung style windows on either side and three (3) picture-frame windows in the center; and

WHEREAS, The original configuration of the five (5) south-facing windows was three (3) picture-frame windows, surrounded by smaller picture-frame windows with a transom window above; and

WHEREAS, The replacement windows will be aluminum-clad wood windows painted a dark color to match the existing windows and the other windows in the building, and configured as three (3) tilt and turn picture-frame windows surrounded by smaller picture-frame windows with fixed transom window above to match the look of the original configuration; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five urges the building owners and management to consider a 'master plan' for window replacement following this applicant's example, while preserving original wood windows where possible; and

WHEREAS, CB5 reminds the Landmarks Preservation Commission of the active violation against the building for illegal replacement of historic windows to non-historic material, operation, and configuration in other units in this condominium building as noted in a resolution from March 2008; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the request by the applicant to replace five (5) non-historic south-facing windows in Apartment #3W at 11-13 West 18th Street.

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27 West 19th Street, Application for the rooftop installation of a freestanding pergola.

WHEREAS, 27 West 19th Street, constructed in 2007, is a 15-story residential building within the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant owns the penthouse apartment; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant seeks to construct a freestanding, unpainted wooden frame nine feet tall and spanning the width of the 19th Street façade; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant proposes to place a non-permanent cover over the pergola of undescribed color; and

WHEREAS, The proposed design is for Applicant's private use; and

WHEREAS, The proposed design would be highly visible from the street; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to install a freestanding pergola on the roof of 27 West 19th Street.

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139-141 West 44th Street, Hudson Theatre, application for renovation and alterations

WHEREAS, The Hudson Theatre located at 139-141 West 44th Street is a Broadway theatre built in 1902-04 for Henry B Harris, a top producer of his time, and designed by J.B. McElfatrick & Son; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to conduct renovations and alterations for the purpose of returning the Hudson Theatre for use as a legitimate theatre; and

WHEREAS, The Hudson Theatre has been used as a conference and event space within the Millennium Hotel; and

WHEREAS, The Hudson Theatre is one of the few designated interior landmarks, due to the grandeur of its interior, and that the interior, begun by J.B. McElfatrick & Son and completed by Israels & Harder, is noted in the designation report as "an unusually handsome neo-classical design; that the architecturally significant features in its auditorium and lobby spaces include Tiffany glass domes, elegant plasterwork ornamentation, and unusual light-fixtures"; and

WHEREAS, The architectural press also noted at the time: "... as soon as we enter, the elegance of the building becomes apparent. The vestibule and lobby are exceptionally spacious and are richly furnished in Verde Antique marble, with a coffered ceiling studded with incandescent bulbs."; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove a green Antique Verde marble curved stone wall for access to and from a new elevator, to provide ADA accessibility; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install acoustic doors with bronze hardware for sound and light barrier between the auditorium and the lobby which is currently only divided by red velvet curtains; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install a very large bar in the Tiffany lobby which would include an off-white painted wood bar and two translucent glass arched back bars shelving units to be placed in front of three arched mirrors and a fireplace; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to create an opening at the dress circle level, providing a connection to a new lounge; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes many other changes to the interior as well as to the exterior but did not present those to Community Board Five due to these being deemed "staff-level" alterations by LPC and therefore not subject to review by this board; and

WHEREAS, The bar footprint concealing historic material (fire mantel, mirrors) is too obtrusive, its color and material inadequate, inelegant and non-contextual; and

WHEREAS, The removal of five green marble Antic Verde historic panels dating 1903 is deplorable; and

WHEREAS, Acoustic doors are not contextual to the interior; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to make renovations and alterations to the Hudson Theatre at 139-141 West 44th Street.

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139-141 West 44th Street, Hudson Theatre, application process.

WHEREAS, The Hudson Theatre located at 139-141 West 44th Street is a Broadway theatre built in 1902-04 for Henry B Harris, a top producer of his time, and designed by J.B. McElfatrick & Son; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to conduct renovations and alterations for the purpose of returning the Hudson Theatre for use as a legitimate theatre; and

WHEREAS, The Hudson Theatre has been used as a conference and event space within the Millennium Hotel; and

WHEREAS, The Hudson Theatre is one of the few designated interior landmarks due to the grandeur of its interior, and that the interior, begun by J.B. McElfatrick & Son and completed by Israels & Harder, is noted in the designation report as "an unusually handsome neo-classical design; that the architecturally significant features in its auditorium and lobby spaces include Tiffany glass domes, elegant plasterwork ornamentation, and unusual light-fixtures"; and

WHEREAS, The architectural press also noted at the time: "... as soon as we enter, the elegance of the building becomes apparent. The vestibule and lobby are exceptionally spacious and are richly furnished in Verde Antique marble, with a coffered ceiling studded with incandescent bulbs."; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove a green Antique Verde marble curved stone wall for access to and from a new elevator, to provide ADA accessibility; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install acoustic doors with bronze hardware for sound and light barrier between the auditorium and the lobby which is currently only divided by red velvet curtains; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install a very large bar in the Tiffany lobby which would include an off-white painted wood bar and two translucent glass arched back bars shelving units to be placed in front of three arched mirrors and a fireplace; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposed to create an opening at the dress circle level, providing a connection to a new lounge; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes many other changes to the interior as well as to the exterior but did not present those to Community Board Five due to these being deemed "staff-level" alterations by LPC and therefore not subject to review by this board; and

WHEREAS, The applicant requested that CB5 waive their right to review the application and CB5 declined, and

WHEREAS, Despite CB5 rejection of the waiver, the applicant proceeded with LPC to attend a August 11 2015 hearing at which the matter was reviewed, voted on and approved, and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five is dismayed by LPC's decision to hear and approve this application without community input despite the request by Community Board Five to postpone until Community Board Five was back in session and able to provide comment; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five is very concerned by LPC's decision that renovations including signage and alterations to exterior doors be seen as insignificant enough to not require community input; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application; and further be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five urges LPC to vacate their decision made on August 11th 2015 to approve the application, and incorporate CB5 comments into their decision making process, including by requesting that the applicant reduces the size of the bar, uses a material that is historically more harmonious and elegant, and finds a way to provide access to the new elevator without removal of significant historic fabric; and further be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five strongly advises that LPC continues to provide Community Boards with an opportunity to comment on significant alterations, rather than granting approvals for such alterations at staff level.

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235 West 44th Street, Broadhurst Theatre, application for conversion of existing wall billboard to LED video display

WHEREAS, The Shubert Organization applied for a conversion of wall billboard and signage to LED video display;

WHEREAS, The video display will be a few inches smaller than the existing 18'x12' billboard and will be encased in a plain black frame;

WHEREAS, Video displays, LED panels and use of cutting-edge technology are contextual to Times Square and Broadway Theater District;

WHEREAS, Many of the surrounding theaters have done similar conversions;

WHEREAS, The existing billboard has historically been used exclusively to promote theater shows and CB5 expressed interest that that usage remain the same; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of this application at 235 West 44th Street.

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July 2015

365 5th Avenue, CUNY Graduate Center, application for rooftop renovation.

WHEREAS, 365 5th Avenue (NE corner of 34th Street) currently known as the CUNY Graduate Center and historically known as the B. Altman Department Store, is a 16-story, designed in the Italian Renaissance Palazzo style building by the architectural firm of Trowbridge and Livingston; and

WHEREAS, The c. 1906 building was designated an individual landmarked in 1982 with a statement by Community Board Five in favor of designation; and

WHEREAS, The City University of New York (CUNY) hired the prominent architectural firm Gwathmey Siegel to restore and re-purpose the building in 2000; and

WHEREAS, CUNY intends to convert un-used attic space into a usable light-filled lecture hall and add a small green roof and amenity space; and

WHEREAS, A roof top addition measuring approximate 136' x 23' and 13'6" tall, and 3' lower than existing roof top mechanical units; and

WHEREAS, The addition will house a stairway to allow access to a new rooftop patio measuring 15' x 17' and a new green roof measuring approximately 37' x 28'; and

WHEREAS, The rooftop addition is not visible from positions immediately surrounding the building, from locations South on 5th Avenue or locations East on 34th street; and

WHEREAS, The rooftop addition is only slightly visible and much less visible than the existing rooftop mechanical units from locations North on 5th Avenue and West on 34th Street; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a new rooftop addition at 365 5th Avenue.

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703 Fifth Avenue, application for storefront renovations and new signage.

WHEREAS, 703 Fifth Avenue, the St. Regis Hotel, is a beaux arts "skyscraper" hotel designed by Trowbridge and Livingston and built in 1901 (commissioned by John Jacob Astor), which was designated as an individual landmark in 1988; and 

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install awnings and signage and to paint windows of the DeBeers space on the Fifth Avenue and East 55th Street facades; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work encompasses several subtle changes to the existing storefront:

  • The existing purple retractable awnings would be replaced with new black retractable awnings of the same size, shape and fabric;
  • The existing silver metal "DeBeers" signage on the façade over five bays would be removed and replaced with black acrylic letters of the same size over four bays;
  • The façade signage would remain backlit, but the bulbs would be replaced with small LED bulbs;
  • The existing glass panel with metal signage over the entry door would be removed and replaced with new white letters on a new black window plate;
  • Existing window and door frames would be painted black;
  • The façade would be cleaned and previous attachment points would be patched and repaired.

WHEREAS, The proposed work is minor and appropriate for the design of this landmarked building; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for storefront renovations and new signage at 703 Fifth Avenue.

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5 East 17th Street, application for Elevator Bulkhead Extension.

WHEREAS The building owner of   5 East 17th Street applied for an Elevator Bulkhead Extension to accommodate a new elevator to arrive at forthcoming the roof deck and addition of a cornice;

WHEREAS This building is in the Ladies' Mile Historic District;

WHEREAS The committee was very concerned with drastic increase from an 8 foot bulkhead to a 20 foot bulkhead;

WHEREAS The applicant proposed to put a fiberglass cornice where there had not been one since the 1940's tax photo;

WHEREAS The applicant did not provide adequate renderings nor a detailed plan of the design of the cornice;

WHEREAS The applicant was unable to provide the committee with any information on if historic architects had done any design consultation or materials sourcing consultation on this application;

WHEREAS The applicant was unable to provide the committee with exact colors, samples or responses to questions about material weathering;

WHEREAS The applicant was unable to provide the committee with a complete list of angles from which the bulkhead would be visible;

WHEREAS These missing elements of information gave the committee great concern that there was not enough to judge if the cornice would be contextual or if the bulkhead would look unobtrusive;

WHEREAS There were too many variables for the committee members to make a decision without more information such as renderings, samples and colorized elevation renderings;

WHEREAS The committee gave the applicant the option to withdraw the application until their plans are more complete but they refused; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the Community Board Five recommends denial of this application elevator bulkhead extension for 5 East 17th Street.

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574 Sixth Avenue, application for a Certificate of Appropriateness.

WHEREAS, 574 Sixth Avenue, in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, is a 4-story commercial building, built in 1903-04 and designed by Simeon Eisendrath Architects located on the north east corner of 16th Street, designated a Landmark in July 1990; and

WHEREAS, The windows on the second through fourth floors were originally constructed as wood framed windows, in a combination of pivot , fixed and operable windows with operable transoms; and

WHEREAS, Many of these windows have deteriorated and are beyond repair, and windows on the fourth floors have already been replaced at the time of designation; and

WHEREAS, The applicant seeks to replace all windows on both Sixth Avenue and 16th Street elevation on the second through fourth floors with more energy efficient insulated glass windows in aluminum frames, painted brown; and

WHEREAS, The proposed windows will maintain the original sightlines and divided light mullion patterns; and

WHEREAS, There have been inconsistent alterations to the existing windows to accommodate individual air-conditioning units, and the applicant submitted a master plan to LPC, but at their suggestion it has been removed from the application; and

WHEREAS, While the loss of the 13 Chicago-style pivot windows on the 2nd and 3rd floors is regrettable, the design of the new windows is sympathetic to the original design and will still be operable but as a hopper-style window tilting in; and

WHEREAS, The owner expressed safety and insurance concerns with 7'-6" wide pivot windows; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for 574 Sixth Avenue.

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1150 Broadway, Application for Exhaust Duct Installation.

WHEREAS, 1150 Broadway, known as the Victoria Building, is an early 20th Century Beaux Arts commercial building located on the Northeast corner of Broadway and West 27th Street within the heart of the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, The Smith Restaurant, seeks to install a metal exhaust duct to lead from the ground floor restaurant space to the roof; and

WHEREAS, The exhaust duct will be 28 inches wide and 36 inches deep and will connect with brackets to the side of the Fifth Avenue façade and run 214 feet to the roof; and

WHEREAS, The installation will be painted to blend in with the building's façade in an effort be as inconspicuous as possible; and

WHEREAS, The exhaust duct is necessary for the Applicant to operate as a restaurant; and

WHEREAS, The exhaust duct will be visible at street level from the East; and

WHEREAS, Despite the Applicant's best efforts, this was the only design deemed safe by the Fire Department of New York; and

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to install a metal exhaust duct onto the 5th Avenue façade of 1150 Broadway.

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February 2015

75 Rockefeller Plaza – Application for new windows on the 32nd floor on the north, east, and west elevations and new terrazzo to be installed at the 52nd Street building entry

WHEREAS, 75 Rockefeller Plaza is part of Landmarked Rockefeller Center, an Art-Deco style commercial, office and entertainment complex of 19 commercial buildings, covering 22 acres between West 48th and 51st Streets built by the Rockefeller Family; and

WHEREAS, 75 Rockefeller Plaza was designed by Robert Carson and Earl Lundin with Wallace K. Harrison as consulting architect, built in 1946 as headquarters for Standard Oil Company and originally named as the Esso Building; and

WHEREAS, This 33 story building was constructed some 15 years after the rest of the complex, primarily due to the ties between the Rockefeller Family and Standard Oil, on a site that at one time was intended to be a continuation of Rockefeller Plaza northward; and

WHEREAS, The building, located at the northerly end of Rockefeller Plaza, has 100 ft. frontage on West 51st Street and 275 ft. frontage on West 52nd Street; and

WHEREAS, The building had been net leased to Time Warner as its headquarters until 2014 and has since been vacated, giving its new owners the opportunity to repair, upgrade and modernize various elements of the building; and

WHEREAS, In June 2013, Community Board Five recommended approval of a Certificate of Appropriateness for modifications to the ground-floor infill on West 51st and 52nd Street elevations, installation of new planters, paving, and a railing on the 2nd floor set-back terraces above the West 51st and 52nd Street elevations; and

WHEREAS, The scope of work under the current application includes new windows on the 32nd floor on the north, east, and west elevations and new terrazzo to be installed at the 52nd Street building entry; and

WHEREAS, The new windows are being added due to conversion of mechanical space on the 32nd floor to office space and will involve creating openings in the original aluminum spandrel panels; and

WHEREAS, The new windows will match the historic profile, dimensions and finishes of the existing windows on the building, except that aluminum will be used in place of steel and insulated glass will be used (as is being done throughout the entire Rockefeller Center complex); and

WHEREAS, The new windows will complete the row of windows on the 32nd floor, which currently exist on the entire south elevation and part of the east and west elevations and will enhance the symmetry of the façade; and

WHEREAS, The new white terrazzo (more specifically, white terrazzo with white matrix) to be installed at the 52nd Street building entry will replace the existing pink terrazzo (more specifically, white terrazzo with pink matrix) in order to match the white terrazzo currently being installed throughout the building lobby; and

WHEREAS, Although the existing terrazzo panels are 3 ft. 8 in. by 3 ft. 8 in., the new terrazzo panels will 6 ft. 8 in. by 3 ft. 8 in. to better match the panel joints of the building; and

WHEREAS, There is no Rockefeller Center-wide scheme that dictates terrazzo color, and the proposed white terrazzo falls within the existing color palate of the Center and will be an improvement over the existing deteriorated terrazzo; and

WHEREAS, The proposed modifications are appropriate and respectful of the historic conditions of the building and the Rockefeller Center complex; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of new windows on the 32nd floor on the north, east, and west elevations and new terrazzo to be installed at the 52nd Street building entry.

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212 5th Avenue, application for a rooftop addition, window replacement, storefront infill replacement, new sidewalk canopy, installing a new window line on the south facade, and enlarging window openings on the south facade

WHEREAS, 212 FIFTH AVENUE (aka 2-8 West 26th Street and 1134-1138 Broadway), is a 20 story neo-Medieval stores and office building designed by architectural firm Schwartz & Gross and built in 1912-13, located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is converting the building from commercial to residential use and wishes to do the following alterations:

- Enlargement of existing rooftop structure to enclose new mechanical equipment and installing louvers

- Installation of new window line and enlarging of window openings at the secondary south elevation

- Replacement of copper-clad windows at the top 3rd and 4th windows with new aluminum windows finished to match the historic

- Replacement of non-historic storefront infill

- Installation of a new sidewalk canopy at a new residential entrance on West 26th Street

- Restoration of deteriorated walls, replacement of parapet and cornice, replacing original terracotta masonry and brickwork with cast stone and GFRC, and

WHEREAS, The replacement of non-historic storefront infill, modification and additions to the penthouse as proposed, the replacement of copper-clad windows with historically matching color and configuration on the east, north and west elevations, are contextual and appropriate to the building; and

WHEREAS, The Board does have reservations about the plans to install a new non-historic window line and enlarged window openings at the south elevation; and

WHEREAS, The Board objects to the removal of the existing 3rd & 4th Stories windows, the use of cast stone and GFRP and the installation of a canopy at any entrance; therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application under the following conditions:

  1. The Chicago-style pivot windows shall be retained and restored (including their opening mechanism) where they are currently present (3rd & 4th Floors)
  2. Identical historical materials shall be used to repair or replace damaged or missing historical materials including the parapet and cornices and the use of GFRP, Cast Stone or similar modern materials shall not be used for the exterior restoration
  3. Canopies shall not be appended to the building at any entrance

Until and unless these conditions are met, Community Board Five does not support this application.

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June 2015

33 West 17th Street, application to increase height of existing bulkhead on the roof

WHEREAS, 33 West 17th Street is an  eleven-story, neo-Renaissance Style store and loft building designed by Schwartz & Gross and built in 1907-08, located on the north side of 17th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to increase the height of the existing bulkhead on the roof of the building; and 

WHEREAS, The bulkhead will stand 21 feet and 8 inches above the building roof, which will be approximately twice its existing height; and 

WHEREAS, The bulkhead is required to add an elevator stop for ADA elevator access to a new rooftop deck that is being built as an amenity for building tenants; and 

WHEREAS, The bulkhead will be minimally visible east and west of the building on 17th Street including the top of the bulkhead being visible from 17th Street and 6th Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The visibility of the bulkhead is in keeping with the visibility of other rooftop structures on the building and other buildings on the block and in the nearby surrounding area; and 

WHEREAS, The Applicant will consult LPC regarding the color of the bulkhead; and  

WHEREAS, Additionally the Applicant will examine the building standing seam metal storefront hood and make any necessary repairs; therefore be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to increase the height of the bulkhead on the roof of 33 West 17th Street.

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2015 Borough Board/Community Board Resolution Recognizing the 50th Anniversary of the NYC Landmarks Law and Value of Preservation

WHEREAS, In 1965 elected officials signed The New York City Landmarks Law mandating  the protection of historic resources as part of a comprehensive urban planning process and a "public necessity" that is "required in the interest of the health, prosperity, safety and welfare of the people;" and

WHEREAS, The legitimacy of this process and its public purpose has been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court; and

WHEREAS,  The Landmarks Law outlines the many reasons for establishing a means to designate and protect buildings and neighborhoods, including fostering civic pride, protecting and enhancing attractions,  stimulating tourism and other businesses and overall, strengthening the economy of the city; and

WHEREAS, The New York Landmarks Preservation Commission has a 50-year record of review and approval of alterations to individual landmarks or buildings located within historic districts, and half of a century later, preservation continues to serve New Yorkers by helping to create a vibrant, livable city; and

WHEREAS, Preservation stabilizes diverse communities: New York City is not a single monolithic entity but rather a great consolidation of neighborhoods.  Preserving the character of those neighborhoods creates stability for the many diverse identities of New York and allows them to flourish without being lost; and

WHEREAS, Preservation preserves affordable housing: Landmarks and buildings in the city's historic districts in all five boroughs provide protections against demolition, which in turn save hundreds of existing units subject to rent regulation, and

WHEREAS, Preservation promotes investment, economic development and good jobs:  Preservation encourages investment in real estate while stabilizing property values and strengthening the city's tax base.  It helps create and protect local jobs in the conservation, reconstruction, manufacturing, film and television, tourism, hospitality and other related industries. 

WHEREAS, Preservation is sustainable: The greenest building is the one already built.  Most old buildings were designed with a sophistication of thought rather than a sophistication of technology, which, in terms of climate control and energy usage, integrates them with the environment in a way that most new buildings do not.  Furthermore, repairing, rehabilitating and re-using buildings and materials saves money, fuel and energy without the waste, debris, noise and truck traffic that new construction generates when it involves the demolition of an existing building.

WHEREAS, The New York Times declared that preservation is an "environmental necessity" on the occasion of the a 50th Anniversary New York City Landmarks Law and the Landmarks Preservation Commission in April 2015; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Landmarks law in 2015 and the ongoing value of our community's distinctive character, landmarks and built heritage, and be it further

RESOLVED, CB5 urges elected officials and citizens throughout the city to support and defend the New York City Landmarks Law, a strong Landmarks Preservation Commission and the distinctive landmarks in our community, both those that are officially designated and those that are currently unprotected.

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May 2015

125 5th Avenue, application for installation of a two floor rooftop addition, new stairs and bulkhead.

At the regularly scheduled monthly Community Board Five meeting on Thursday, May 14, 2015, the following resolution passed with a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 125 Fifth Avenue located between East 19th and East 20th Street, in the Ladies Mile Historic District, is a five-story store and loft building, which was originally was constructed by Joseph Sandford in 1850-51, as two of a series of five brownstone-fronted residences; and

WHEREAS, By the 1880's the ground floors of the two Sandford brownstones at 125 and 127 Fifth Avenue had been converted to commercial uses, and by the 1890's these were entirely occupied by businesses such as dressmakers & milliners, among them the well-known firm Bergdorf & Voight later known as Bergdorf Goodman (1894-1904) and Lord & Taylor (1906-1914); and

WHEREAS, In 1921-23, then owners Edward & Goodhue Livingston altered the buildings of 125 and 127 Fifth Avenue, in order to unify them into a singular store and office building, with a terra-cotta Neo-Gothic styled façade designed by the architect Irving Margon; and

WHEREAS, In March 2006, an early morning "three alarm fire," which required "six trucks, twelve engines and 138 firefighters," severely damaged the northern portion of the building at 125 Fifth Avenue – fortunately without any injuries to people who would have been working inside; and

WHEREAS, Subsequent to the March 2006 fire, the current owners of 125 Fifth Avenue commissioned and executed a building restoration which included window replacements, elevator modernization, and replication of the historic terra-cotta façade; and

WHEREAS, In the execution of the permitted elevator modernization, the shaft had been overbuilt, thus where the previous shaft had been 8'-9" above the roofline, the current elevator shaft rises 13'-11" above the roofline, in non-compliance with the Certificate of No Effect; and

WHEREAS, The applicants are proposing to perform a modification to the elevator shaft, which would decrease its height by 2'-0" so that the top of the shaft would rise 11'-11" above the roofline; and

WHEREAS, Both the previous and current elevator shafts had been and are clad in material which is darker than the façade below, much like rooftop mechanical housings in many other historic buildings, and had been and are currently partially obscured by the parapet wall; and

WHEREAS, The applicants are proposing to construct a 2 story rooftop penthouse addition to the existing building, which would be clad in a brick to blend with the party wall of the adjacent taller building to the north, as well as limestone, dark bronze and glass elements; and

WHEREAS, The proposed penthouse structure would surround and enclose the elevator shaft and the stair bulkhead, and would be composed of a sixth floor spanning the entire north-to-south expanse of the rooftop, as well as a smaller seventh floor, which would rise to an elevation of 25'-4½" above the roofline; and

WHEREAS, The design seems intent not to mimic but to blend with the existing building below and the taller adjacent buildings in an understated fashion, not detracting or competing with the historic building fabric, though the proposed penthouse addition is in a contemporary style; and

WHEREAS, The profuse use of glass for the façade and the elevator vestibule enclosure is of concern; and

WHEREAS, Today, 125 Fifth Avenue seems to be in pristine condition, with fully occupied store and office lofts, perfectly characteristic of the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, We support the effort to decrease the elevation of the overbuilt elevator shaft, thus decreasing the visibility of this rooftop structure, although we suggest that this be clad in a lighter colored material, to blend with the building's façade; and

WHEREAS, In the context of the historic district, we believe that the addition of a visible rooftop structure would be less conspicuous if the structure were clad without the darker bronze elements; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to construct a new penthouse addition to 125 Fifth Avenue, unless the structure including the elevator bulkhead were clad with material to match the environment, without the darker bronze elements.

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April 2015

Application for modifications to the façade at the Ground Floor 4 West 19th Street (Ladies’ Mile Historic District)

WHEREAS, The building located at 4 West 19th Street (southwest corner of Fifth Avenue and 19th Street) is a neo-Renaissance twelve story building designed by architect Robert Maynicke and built from 1899 to 1901; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is looking to restore the aesthetic of the previously removed historic fabric of the storefront at the ground floor of the 19th Street facade at bays 4, 5, and 6, (counting from East to West), where bay 1 is the easternmost bay at Fifth Avenue and counting up going west along 19 street; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has provided comprehensive documentation of historical conditions, existing conditions, and the proposed scope of work; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has worked closely with the staff of the Landmarks Preservation Commission and the application demonstrates restraint of scope and sensitivity to original fabric, conditions, materials, and colors; and

WHEREAS, The proposed materials are to match existing materials, including both painted black metal and wood and flat and curved glass of dimensions to be similar in dimension to the original adjacent fabric; and

WHEREAS, Bay 4 has non historic infill and the applicant is fully restoring it to its pre-landmarked conditions: projecting roof with show windows, rounded glass corners, and wood baseboards to exactly match the other existing bays; and

WHEREAS, Bay 5 is historic and has an existing projecting roof with show windows, rounded glass corners, and wood baseboards, but the mullions are not original, are randomly spaced and do not align with historic mullions from transom window above, and the applicant will also rehabilitate a portion of the window baseboards; and

WHEREAS, Bay 6 is historic and the scope at this bay will be limited to matching the designation photo, with work including rehabilitating the double doors and replacing glass where indicated on building elevations; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for renovations at 4 West 19th Street.

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100 Fifth Avenue -application for a proposed ADA compliant exterior ramp

WHEREAS, The applicant, Eddie Bauer, is proposing to construct a cement ramp with painted metal rails along the 5th Avenue façade to provide ADA accessibility, to overcome a 6.25" stone step at the entry door; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has a policy to render all its retail stores ADA compliant, regardless of local rules and regulations; and

WHEREAS, The Committee is fully supportive of the goal to make facilities accessible to everyone; and

WHEREAS, The design of the ramp is seemingly a "cut and paste" solution that makes no attempt to be harmonious to the building or the surrounding district in its design or in the use of materials; and

WHEREAS, The applicant did not seriously explore other possible design options with respect to using an ADA compliant entry on the 15th Street façade, such as use of more decorative railings, reducing the foot print of the landings, using or embellishing the ramp with more appropriate, harmonious materials, or other ad-hoc ideas such as carving a ramp into the existing stone step or making structural modification to the entry; and

WHEREAS, A more creative scheme could be developed to achieve both ADA compliance and preservation goals; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for proposed new ADA compliant ramp at 100 Fifth Avenue.

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100 Fifth Avenue -application for two illuminated exterior signage

WHEREAS, 100 Fifth Avenue (NW corner of 15th Street) is a 16 story, Beaux-Arts building located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The new tenant, Eddie Bauer, a national clothing store chain, seeks to replace the existing two signs: one on the transom above the entry doors on 5th Avenue which will consist of a dark grey aluminum panel with a stencil cut containing a back-lit translucent white acrylic logo at 86.5" wide x 60.5" high, and a second sign located at the top of the window on the second bay of the 15th Street façade and fabricated similar to the one located on Fifth Avenue except for its size, which is 134.5" wide x 32.5" high; and

WHEREAS, They are not seeking to add any blade signs and the proposed signs are similar to the signs they are replacing on this building and others along Fifth Avenue/Ladies Mile signs; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for proposed new signs at 100 Fifth Avenue.

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375 Park Avenue, application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for alterations to portions of designated interiors and alter sidewalk canopies to the interior landmark Four Season Restaurant

WHEREAS, 375 Park Avenue, located between 52nd and 53rd Street, was designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe in the highly acclaimed international style Seagram Building design; and

WHEREAS, The Four Seasons Restaurant Ground Floor and First Floor interiors were designed by Philip Johnson, built 1958-59, praised by architectural critics as among the finest international style interior spaces in the United States and the costliest restaurant ever constructed;

WHEREAS, The Applicant, building owner RFR, wishes to restore several original elements which are showing their age including existing bronze and stainless steel railings, the Marie Nichols designed metal curtains, and smoke stained ceiling panels, working closely with specialized artisans to ensure work is executed to the original standards; and

WHEREAS, Applicant is proposing to undo previous alterations including replacement of non-original beige wainscot paneling at the Pool Room with gray color closer to the original, removal of non-original glass partition up the Grille Room, and replacement of the non-original carpeting throughout; and

WHEREAS, The proposed alterations would allow the restaurant and lobby space to function better, be more energy efficient and provide better accessibility; and

WHEREAS, The Ground Floor Coat Room would be modified using the original bronze frame and infilled with original travertine panels to create larger Coat Room and existing bronze door will be relocated to create an ADA compliant Men's room; and

WHEREAS, Both East 52nd Street and East 53rd street entrance canopies would replace opaque material with translucent material in keeping with adjacent building canopy, and lighting would be slightly modified to remove non-original light fixtures; and

WHEREAS, Incandescent light sources would be replaced with energy efficient LED lighting throughout while maintaining original light fixtures, and 

WHEREAS, The Pool Room's mezzanine level would have a folding partition of matching oak paneling to create a private dining room and the upper oak paneled wall would be reconfigured to be operable to create open connection between the mezzanine and Pool Room and non-original tree planters would add casters; and

WHEREAS, The Pool Room's vestibule wine display would be modified to toilet rooms while maintaining the bronze door frame; and

WHEREAS, The Grill Room would remove non-original fissured glass partition between bar and restaurant and the addition of a removable raised platform at upper mezzanine, and replace non-original leather bar panels, and the Lippold sculpture would be cleaned per New York Landmarks Conservancy specifications, as NYLC owns the sculpture; and

WHEREAS, CB5 had no opportunity to comment, as we would wish, on the decorative elements, as the applicant did not have final carpet color and pattern selected, nor were we able to review the cleaning method of the Lippold sculpture and metal window drapery; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Certificate of Appropriateness, with the condition that applicant will come back to CB5 with details of the cleaning protocol for the Lippold Sculptures, and with the understanding that applicant will submit a Certificate of Appropriateness for carpet separately and will give CB5 an opportunity to comment.

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Application to expand the existing Madison Square North Historic District

WHEREAS, The Madison Square North Historic District was designated a Historic District by the Landmarks Preservation Commission on June 26 2001, comprising approximately 96 buildings between the Avenue of the Americas and Madison Avenue and 25th and 29th Streets; and

WHEREAS, In 2008, Historic Districts Council, HDC, commissioned a survey of buildings adjacent to the existing district; and

WHEREAS, The 29th Street Neighborhood Association proposes an expansion of the existing District with new borders from the Avenue of the Americas to Park Avenue South and from 24th to 34th Streets, as well as a small southerly addition to adjoin the existing northern boundary of the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, This proposal is in response to a suggestion by the Landmarks Preservation Commission for a more comprehensive effort to preserve relevant local architecture than the prevailing piecemeal approach; and

WHEREAS, This expansion would be in keeping with the original planned phased process; and

WHEERAS, The Applicant seeks to preserve the architectural and historical complexity of an eclectic neighborhood that shows the progression of the area from a premier residential and entertainment center of the city from the late 1800s until the turn of the 20th Century to the surge of mid-rise commercial and loft buildings that welcomed the age of the Roaring Twenties; and

WHEREAS, This expansion would add approximately 286 buildings to the existing District; and

WHEERAS, The proposed area is expansive and, as is typical in all Historic Districts, includes parking lots, non-contributing buildings, and empty lots; and

WHEREAS, Property owners and developers expressed concern that the proposed borders may be over-broad and too sweeping in scope; and

WHEREAS, A large number of supporters, including architects, residents, and property owners, spoke in favor of the expansion, and

WHEREAS, The expansion area, dating from the turn of the century to the depression,  includes buildings that clearly express the historical and architectural narrative set forth in the original District's Designation Report; and

WHEREAS, Numerous examples of turn-of-the-century hotels and both original and repurposed mid-19th century row houses populate the proposed expansion area; and

WHEREAS, The expansion area includes the famed cultural landmark of Tin Pan Alley on West 28th Street, which served as the heart of the American popular music publishing industry until the start of World War I; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to expand the existing Madison Square North Historic District and asks the Landmarks and Preservation Commission to determine appropriate boundaries for the expansion area; therefore be it also

RESOLVED, Community Board Five urges LPC to streamline its review process for alterations to landmarked buildings so as to put minimal strain on building owners and their retail tenants.

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March 2015

7 East 27th Street, Application for partially visible mechanical equipment on the rooftop.

WHEREAS, 7 East 27th Street is a Beaux Arts style 12-story building with a penthouse located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has proposed extensive renovations including a full restoration of the building's 27th Street façade; and

WHEREAS, The renovations include a rooftop installation of mechanical equipment, which would be partially visible from certain street vantages; and

WHEREAS, The roof is the only viable location for the mechanical equipment, and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has proposed the installation of a pre-fabricated corrugated metal screen to block the mechanical equipment from view; and

WHEREAS, The screen will be painted to match the building's penthouse and will be approximately 6 feet tall and 50 feet long, spanning the length of the penthouse; and

WHEREAS, The screen will be a free-standing structure installed behind a setback, and engineered to withstand weather conditions; and

WHEREAS, The Landmarks Commission requested the Applicant install this screen to mitigate the effect of the visible mechanical equipment; and

WHEREAS, The addition of a partially visible metal screen will be a relatively minor intrusion on the District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of this application to install mechanical equipment on the roof of 7 East 27th Street behind a metal screen.

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30 East 20th Street, application for the removal of fire shutters

WHEREAS, 30 East 20th Street, also known as the Gabay Building is a seven story store and loft commercial building located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building, designed by Frederick Zobel and built by Gertude Gabay in 1906-07, exhibits an elegant Beaux Arts façade; and

WHEREAS, The building is adjacent to the Theodore Roosevelt House; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to remove historic metal fire shutters from the rear facade that is not visible from the street, and

WHEREAS, The 17 original cast iron fire shutters, affixed to the south facade have not been maintained and present extensive signs of deterioration; and

WHEREAS, The applicant submitted an engineer report stating that the shutters restoration would be costly; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to keep the shutters in the building's storage room, in case someone would be interested to restore the shutters in the future and will leave hinges in place; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to remove cast iron fire shutters at 30 East 20th Street

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485 Seventh Avenue Application for Storefront Modification and Rooftop Additions

WHEREAS, 485 Seventh Avenue was the third and largest of three model residential hotels for single working men built by Darius Ogden Mills at the turn of the 20th Century, rising 16 stories in a neo-Renaissance building, with 1,885 single rooms, each with a window opening onto a street or a courtyard; and

WHEREAS, The Mills Hotel No. 3 was described by the New York Times as the "world's biggest hotel" and the "finest for the use of men of limited means" built in 1906-07 by Mills, a banker and philanthropist, especially concerned with the problems of housing for the poor; and

WHEREAS, Mills was inspired by architect Ernest Flagg, who revolutionized the thinking about low cost urban housing in an article in Scribner's Magazine by calling for a new building type based on a 100-foot wide module, incorporating a central light court which would employ fewer wall enclosures, corridors and partitions than the traditional conventionally-planned tenement, resulting in greater room space, light, ventilation and fire protection; and

WHEREAS, Mills commissioned the architectural firm Copeland and Dole to design the building shortly after the construction of Pennsylvania Station; and

WHEREAS, The building's facades were "intended to present an impressive yet simple appearance," clad with limestone, light-colored brick and terra cotta, featuring some string courses, and cornices, fielded panels, cartouches, lion heads and a richly embellished Renaissance copper cornice; and

WHEREAS, The application will revert the building to its historic use as a hotel; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to build a visible roof top addition to accommodate hotel amenities; and

WHEREAS, Existing, visible rooftop mechanical units will be removed; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to restore the stone base, storefronts and entryways, including re-establishing the hotel entry to its original location with a re-creation of the 1907 canopy on 36th Street; and

WHEREAS, The Seventh Avenue front will similarly be restored with storefronts, an entry canopy and cast stone base; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to use modern cast stone which is less desirable than historically appropriate limestone; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application, while urging the applicant to use limestone at the base of the building at 485 Seventh Avenue and 36th Street.

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1133 Broadway, application for installation of an operable storefront in two bays on the West 26th Street facade

WHEREAS, 1133 Broadway, known as St. James building, is a sixteen story plus penthouse office building located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by architect Bruce Price and constructed in 1896 to replace the mid-nineteenth century St. James Hotel; and

WHEREAS, It was considered within a few years of its construction among Price's most important designs; and

WHEREAS, The façade includes both historic and altered materials; and

WHEREAS, The application is for the West 26th Street façade only and does not pertain to the Broadway façade; and

WHEREAS, The application is to install an operable storefront of two bays; and

WHEREAS, The materials and colors to be used in the installation will match those of other recently approved bays in the building; and

WHEREAS, The construction as outlined in the application will allow the storefront to maintain the original look when the storefront is in the closed position; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed application for 1133 Broadway for the installation of an operable storefront of two bays on the façade on West 26th Street.

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January 2015

3 East 57th Street, application to change facade of the lower two floors of a landmark building

WHEREAS, 3 East 57th Street is known as the former L.P. Hollander and Company Building, built 1929-1930 in Art Deco style by Shreve, Lamb & Harmon; and

WHEREAS, This building was landmarked in 2003 and it was noted by Landmark Preservation Commission at the time that although the building is almost entirely intact above the second floor, the lower two floors do not retain any original detail; and

WHEREAS, The current retail tenant, Yves Saint Laurent, occupies the lower two floors of the building and wishes to change the material of the lower two floors, install a flag pole, install new signage, alter the second-floor windows, re-instate egress doors on the east and west sides of the building, and alter the entrances to the building lobby and the retail space; and

WHEREAS, The applicant wishes to remove the existing granite cladding of the ground and second floors and replace it with veined white "statuary premium" marble in accordance to the retail tenant's new marketing image; and

WHEREAS, The proposed façade would be further drifting from original material and design and is inappropriate for the Art Deco building; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to alter the façade of 3 East 57th Street.

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34 West 17th Street, Application for rear facade modifications.

WHEREAS, 34 West 17th Street, a 10-story, loft-style building, is located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The applicant has proposed extensive renovations including full restoration of the building's 17th Street (primary) facade, and 

WHEREAS, The renovations include modifications to the rear (secondary) facade which are visible from the public way on 16th Street, and 

WHEREAS, The rear wall application includes restoration of historically sensitive features such as extensive masonry repointing, restoration (with some re-locations) of historic fire shutters, restoration of wood window frames and windows, and the removal of the fire escape, and

WHEREAS, Less historically sensitive interventions include the enlargement of select window openings to create balcony doors on the 6th through 10th floors, and

WHEREAS, The proposed balcony railings have been modified from the original application of structural glass to more historically appropriate ironwork that will mimic the fire escape railings, and 

WHEREAS, The only modified window openings are on the 10th floor of the building and only minimally visible from the public way, and less so when the trees are in leaf and 

WHEREAS, All other modified window openings are not visible from the public way, and 

WHEREAS, Overall the restoration will enhance the contributing nature of the building and make a positive impact to the Ladies Mile Historic District, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of this application to make rear facade modifications at 34 West 17th Street.

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52 West 22nd Street, application for a solarium

WHEREAS, 52 West 22nd Street, between 5th & 6th Avenues, is an Italianate three stories rowhouse, built in 1851, and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to build a solarium at the back of the building on the 2nd  floor, covering an existing outdoor deck; and

WHEREAS, The proposed alterations are affecting the rear façade and are not visible from any public way and thoroughfare, therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to build a solarium at 52 West 22nd Street.

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281 Park Avenue South, Church Missions House/Protestant Welfare Agencies Building, (SE corner of 22nd St.), application for proposed new storefront, window replacement, relocation of entry doors and improving ADA compliance.

WHEREAS, 281 Park Avenue South (SE corner of 22nd St is an individual landmark designated in 1979; and

WHEREAS, According to the designation report, "is an elegant reminder of the distinctive neighborhood which developed along Park Avenue South between 21st and 23rd Streets during the 1890's"; and

WHEREAS, The designation report also states that "the building exhibited all the necessary technological components of the early skyscrapers and is an especially successful example in New York of architecture inspired by Northern European secular architecture of the 15th and 16th centuries"; and

WHEREAS, An application has been received seeking permission to relocate the building entrance, replace the glass in the windows on the 1st and 2nd floors, add new glass to the entry doors, add low profile LED light to the second floor façade, paint signage on the first floor windows and install an ADA compliant ramp along the 22nd Street façade; and

WHEREAS, The existing windows are not historic and the applicant has failed to achieve an appropriate historic look and feel for the proposed windows on the first and second floors; and

WHEREAS, Although the proposed ADA compliant ramp is acceptable, the proposed modifications to the windows and façade are not consistent with the character of the building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for proposed new storefront, window replacement, relocation of entry doors and improving ADA compliance at 281 Park Avenue South The Church Missions House/Protestant Welfare Agencies Building (SE corner of 22nd St.)

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920 Broadway, application for new signage.

WHEREAS 920 Broadway is a commercial building ("Building") located at the southeast corner of Broadway and 21st Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for new signage on the front of the Building located on Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The new signage will be in the bay window above the entryway transom to the Building; and

WHEREAS, The signage will be illuminated by LED halo lighting; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed signage is appropriate for the Building and the District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for new signage on 920 Broadway.

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1271 Avenue of the Americas, application to modify the lobby and the West 51st Street façade.

WHEREAS, The Time & Life Building located at 1271 Avenue of the Americas and part of Rockefeller Center is a historically important 48-story building, opened in 1959, designed by the architects Harrison, Abramowitz & Harris, and was the first expansion of Rockefeller Center west of the Avenue of the Americas; and

WHEREAS, The lobby of the Time & Life Building, designated an interior landmark on July 16, 2002 by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, includes the general lobby, corridors, breezeways, elevator doors, staircases, works of art, signage, entrance doors, wall surfaces, ceiling surfaces, floor surfaces, and lighting fixtures; and

WHEREAS, Some notable features of the mid-century Modernist lobby interior include its white marble walls, tinted-glass ceiling tiles, stainless steel wall cladding, abstract works of art by noted artists Fritz Glarner and Josef Albers, and the gray and white serpentine-pattern terrazzo flooring inspired by the world famous Avenida Atlântica sidewalk in Copacabana (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) designed by Roberto Burle Marx; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes lobby renovations to accommodate new security and safety needs, building codes requirements for sprinklers and ADA building accesses, and to improve lobby appearance in an effort to attract new tenants; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes total replacement of the terrazzo flooring in materials exactly matching the original industrial materials in an effort to avoid "patchwork" repairs when addressing current cracks and damage caused by removal of turnstiles, security desks, planters and entryways, and will install new flooring in the exact same manner and design as the current flooring; and

WHEREAS, The applicant will clean, patch or selectively replace with matching materials the terrazzo base moldings; and

WHEREAS, The applicant will clean and/or repair the existing zinc dividers used in the flooring and base molding dividers; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes total replacement of the tinted-glass tile ceiling in material, size, and color exactly matched to the original industrial materials in an effort to avoid patchwork repairs when addressing the need for new lighting, installation of a sprinkler system and water lines, installation of security cameras, and to create a removable ceiling tile system for ease of access to mechanicals and plumbing in the future which currently does not exist; and

WHEREAS, The applicant will take great care in planning to utilize the glass tile joints and replaced rosettes to locate new sprinkler heads, new lighting, and new security camera; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to relocate the revolving doors and swing doors on the west side of the 50th Street entrance from inside the lobby to just outside of the building's exterior façade to not only match and become symmetrical with the current configuration of the east side of the 50th Street entrance, but to accommodate ADA regulations; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install new ceiling lighting that will be more energy efficient and also be more closely related to the original lighting scheme and quality, as well as new cove lighting along the perimeters that will be non-visible; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install new breeze-way lighting to be more closely related to the original fixtures in size and shape; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install two reception desks on the south side of the lobby made of marble to match the existing marble on the lobby walls as closely as possible, rounded on the top front edge to match the rounding of the stainless steel wall cladding of the lobby, and each will sit on stainless steel base that matches the stainless steel wall cladding as closely as possible; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install new "Fastlane plus 400AS" turnstiles at each point of elevator bank entry; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to re-open a breezeway/arcade on the east side of the existing breezeway/arcade on the 51st Street side of the lobby and install similar globe lighting to match the new proposed breezeway it connects to; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove two commercial areas on the south side of the lobby which are not currently in the landmark-designated area, and will extend the new terrazzo flooring material and pattern, new ceiling tiles and lighting into this area; and

WHEREAS, All existing materials to be replaced are industrial man-made materials that can be easily replicated in a factory setting to match the current original materials in material, composition, color and texture; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has agreed to take extra care when doing this renovation and to go above and beyond normal efforts to match materials as closely as possible; and

WHEREAS, CB5 understands the delicate nature of proposed alterations to a landmark property, and does not want to see a great example of mid-century Modernism tainted by extensive patchwork repairs that will further take away from the intended beauty of the original design; and

WHEREAS, The applicant will move forward with the renovation utilizing historical accuracy and understands that all new materials introduced into the lobby will be deemed "original" for all future purposes and subject to landmark guidelines and restrictions; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the request by the applicant to renovate the lobby of the Time & Life Building located at 1271 Avenue of the Americas, and

FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED, Community Board Five requests that LPC revise the scope of landmark designation to encompass the opened up portion of the lobby that will match the existing lobby design.

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November 2014

8-10 West 17th Street, Application for the demolition of a commercial building in the Ladies’ Mile Historic District and the construction of a new residential building.

WHEREAS, 8-10 West 17th Street is a three-story mid-block brick office/warehouse building between 5th and 6th Avenues, commissioned by the Catholic Medical Services, designed by Joseph H. Belfatto and built from 1961-1963; and

WHEREAS, The building is located within the Ladies' Mile Historic District, which is defined by three distinct waves of construction, beginning with the early 19th Century development of residential buildings, continuing with the erection of large retail and manufacturing facilities on corner lots in the late 19th Century, and concluding with the early 20th Century construction of tall, mid-block residential buildings; and

WHEREAS, The original designation report labels the existing building at 10 W 17th Street as a "Mid 20th Century commercial" building, does not give it an architectural style, and does not categorize it specifically as contributing to the Historic District; and

WHEREAS, This building is not a conversion, and as such does not refer to any of the three major eras of construction that define the District; and

WHEREAS, This building is unrelated to any of the District's historic trends; and

WHEREAS, Architecturally, this commercial building has more in common with contemporary buildings outside of the District than with its mid-block neighbors; and

WHEREAS, The likely reason for its inclusion in the Historic District is merely its mid-block location; and

WHEREAS, This building does not demonstrate any of the architectural or historic characteristics for which the Ladies' Mile Historic District was landmarked; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building will be 14 stories tall with an additional 2 story penthouse and mechanical closet stacked on top and arranged against the side wall of the taller adjacent building to the East, behind a front setback of 15 feet and a rear setback of 10 feet; and

WHEREAS, The design calls for a 20 foot setback from the rear lot line as per zoning requirements; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building would have small south-facing balconies on the rear of the building; and

WHEREAS, The penthouse and mechanical equipment are incidentally visible and can only be seen from a very small section of Fifth Avenue and the rear of the building can only be seen from a small section of 16th Street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed design of the front façade of the building calls for a limestone and cast aluminum base with terra cotta rain screen panels and cast aluminum spandrels on the higher floors and a 2-3-2 window layout; and

WHEREAS, The design's three-story base with a limestone crown and the painted aluminum cornice at the 14th story recall similar constructions of residential buildings in the District; and

WHEREAS, The proposed materials and color scheme are contextual with the Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed new residential building demonstrates a clear relationship to the immediately surrounding mid-block buildings and to the District as a whole; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building design is harmonious with its immediate neighbors and consistent with mid-block residential buildings throughout the District; and

WHEREAS, The bulk and use for the proposed building are as-of-right and the Applicant is not seeking any special permit or waiver in connection with this development; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to demolish a non-contributing building in the Ladies' Mile Historical District and the construction of a residential building at 8-10 West 17th Street.

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20 Union Square East and East 15th Street, Daryl Roth Theatre, application for installation of banner

WHEREAS, The building at 20 Union Square East and East 15th Street, the former Union Square Savings Bank, built in 1907 and a designated individual landmark since 1996 and currently owned by the Daryl Roth Theatre wishes to erect two performance advertising banners in the front of the building; and

WHEREAS, The proposed vertical banners, each 6 by 26 feet in size would be hung between the first and second columns and between the third and fourth columns along the frontage of the building, said columns being numbered from north to south; and

WHEREAS, The banners shall be supported by structures employing three aluminum rings around the circumference of each of the columns and said rings shall be buffered by neoprene material between the rings and the columns so that there shall be no penetration of or damage to the columns; and

WHEREAS, The vertical members of the banner support apparatus shall be placed as far as possible to the rear of the columns; and

WHEREAS, The existing advertising signage shall be removed from the handicap access ramp and from the roofline of the building, thereby exposing the historical logo of the former bank; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to place performance advertising banners in the manner described above on the individually landmarked building at 20 Union Square East at 15th Street.

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50 West 23rd Street Application for Rooftop Addition & Rooftop HVAC

WHEREAS, 50 West 23 Street, aka 37-49 West 22nd Street is an Art Deco 13 story industrial building, located between 5th & 6th Avenues in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building designed by noted industrial architect Russell G. Cory (1881-1946), and faced in cast concrete and terra-cotta tiles, was built in 1925-26 and an 11 story addition was built in 1956 on 23rd street, and was initially used as a baking and candy factory for the Frank G. Shattuck Company; and

WHEREAS, The Designation Report underscores that Russell G. Cory, the building's architect, noted for his emphasis on vertical articulation highlighted by colorful tiles, is credited (as senior partner in the firm of Cory & Cory) with developing the "vertical street" type industrial structure; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is seeking to install a new cooling tower and mechanical penthouse on the 15th floor (highest) roof (setback approximately 50 feet from the 22nd street façade); and

WHEREAS, The applicant completed a mockup of the proposed additions and walked around the neighborhood with staffers at LPC to ascertain the visual impact of said additions, which the applicant has included photo documentation of as part of the application and presentation to CB5; and

WHEREAS, The HVAC addition is very visible from a number of viewpoints along 6th Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The conclusion of the aforementioned mockup study is that the several incidental and high visibility views of the mockup from the streets and thoroughfares may be mitigated; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for a rooftop addition and HVAC at the 50 West 23 Street.

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100-102 East 17th Street (aka 44 Union Square East), Tammany Hall, application for façade alterations and rooftop addition

WHEREAS, 100-102 East 17th Street (aka 44 Union Square East), the old Tammany Hall, is a 1929 Colonial Revival style building with a red brick façade and white granite, designed by architects Thomson, Holmes & Converse and Charles B. Meyers, to evoke the "days of early American architecture" (according to the 1928 Real Estate Record); and

WHEREAS, The building also has a significant cultural history since it was the headquarters of the "infamous" Democratic political machine known as "Tammany Hall" from 1929 to 1943, and thereafter, continued to be a center of the political and arts communities, housing first the international Ladies Garment Workers Union, then and currently an Off-Broadway theater, and the New York Film Academy; and

WHEREAS, Union Square has been designated a National Historic Landmark by the Federal government; and

WHEREAS, Tammany Hall was identified by the NYC Department City Planning as a "significant building" in the Union Square Special Zoning District; and

WHEREAS, Tammany Hall abuts the East 17th Street/Irving Place Historic District which starts on the east side of Tammany Hall; and

WHEREAS, Over many years the community support for the designation of Tammany Hall has been very strong, as has the substantial support from the area's political leaders and various organizations such as The New York Landmarks Conservancy, The Municipal Art Society of New York, The Historic Districts Council, The Gramercy Neighborhood Associates, and The Union Square Community Coalition; and

WHEREAS, The Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the building as an Individual Landmark on October 29, 2013, and

WHEREAS, The current application proposes the removal of visible portions of the slate roof and replacing it with a large, modern, non-harmonious glass "tortoise shell" shaped "dome," and

WHEREAS, The removal of original, historic fabric and the addition of a visible rooftop addition runs counter to the basic tenets of historic preservation, and

WHEREAS, The facade restoration includes an extensive reconfiguration of the ground level store-fronts, and

WHEREAS, The applicant displayed extensive documentation regarding the original architectural configuration of the building, but proposes a modern storefront design, and

WHEREAS, Three historic bas-relief stone panels will be removed to accommodate three new window openings, and

WHEREAS, The proposed glass dome, although daring in design, is not contextual in style, scale, design, or material, and

WHEREAS, The removal of historic fabric to construct a rooftop addition and to alter the façade is inappropriate, and

WHEREAS, Approval of this non-contextual alteration of a designated landmark would set a dangerous precedent, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to install a rooftop addition and alter the facade in this manner proposed at 100-107 East 17th Street (aka 44 Union Square East).

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245 5th Avenue, application to replace non-historic infill at the Fifth Avenue entrance and alter a side bay on East 28th Street

WHEREAS, 245 5th Avenue is a 24 story store and lofts Neo-Gothic building located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by architect George F. Pelham and constructed in 1926-27 during the last period of high-rise commercial development of the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building remains largely intact on the exterior, with the exception of the storefronts that are non-historic; and

WHEREAS, The original entrance was demolished in 2001 and was replaced by an entranceway that was modern in nature; and

WHEREAS, The application is to alter this opening to go back towards the original configuration in terms of entry placement; and

WHEREAS, There are no photographs on record that show the original entranceway; and

WHEREAS, The proposed entranceway, in addition to the notes above will also address drainage problems and will provide a increased opportunity for the public to see the entrance lobby, which is notable; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to alter one side bay on East 28th Street to provide access to a retail establishment; and

WHEREAS, No original materials will be removed from the building; and

WHEREAS, There is no intention of adding any lighting or signage to the façade or to make any changes that alter historic material; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed application for 245 Fifth Avenue at the Southeast corner of Fifth Avenue and 28th Street.

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Knickerbocker Hotel, 1466 Broadway on the southeast corner of 42nd Street and Broadway, application for signage and lighting on the 1st and 2nd floors.

WHEREAS, The Knickerbocker Hotel is a Beaux Arts style building of red brick with terra cotta details, and with a prominent mansard roof, which was designed by Marvin & Davis, with Bruce Price and built in 1902-1906,  designated in 1988 and put on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980; and

WHEREAS, Its Annex was designed by Phillip C. Brown, built in 1894, and is a designated landmark as well; and

WHEREAS, Financed by John Jacob Astor, it was a luxurious hotel and a popular dining and dancing spot in New York's new theatre district, and is the only survivor out of several grand hotels that were built in the Times Square area; and

WHEREAS, The Knickerbocker closed in the 1920's during the Depression and was converted to office use and was later the home to Newsweek Magazine; and

WHEREAS, An application to alter the two-story commercial base, install canopies, construct a rooftop addition, remove a fire escape and install storefront infill at the Annex was approved in 2010; and

WHEREAS, The current proposal to modify signage and install LED Panels inside the glass facades above the first floor is in keeping with the kind of signage and lighting displays currently in operation in the Times Square area; and

WHEREAS, The LED signs in the transoms and behind the windows are all removable do not alter the historic fabric of the building and do not cover any significant architectural features; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed signage and lighting changes on the 1st and 2nd floors of The Knickerbocker Hotel at 1466 Broadway and 42nd Street.

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106 East 57th Street, Application for a special permit to legalize the operation of an existing eating and drinking establishment, including entertainment (but no dancing), with a capacity for up to 20 persons...

WHEREAS, The proposed special permit before the Board of Standards and Appeals would  legalize the 2nd floor operation of an existing eating and drinking establishment (BLT Steak LLC), including entertainment (but no dancing); and

WHEREAS, This would apply to a private dining hall with seating for 10-14 people, with room for no more than 20 on a portion of the 2nd floor of the building; and

WHEREAS, The room will be used only for private reservation parties, and

WHEREAS, The dining room is 302 square feet; and

WHEREAS, The special permit would be in effect for no more than 5 years; and

WHEREAS, The room has been used in this capacity since 1977; and

WHEREAS, The room's operation will have no negative impact on the neighborhood; and

WHEREAS, Both the condo board and the restaurant owner are joint applicants; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the special permit for the operation of a private dining room at 106 East 57th Street.

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C 150077 ZSM and C 150078 ZSM - 7-13 West 21st Street – Application for a special permit for public parking garage for residential growth and a waiver in street wall height and front setback, rear setback and rear yard...

WHEREAS, 7-13 West 21st Street ("Site") is located in a C64A zoning district in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, 7 West 21 LLC, has applied for a waiver for street wall height and front setback, rear setback and rear yard pursuant to ZR Section 74-712 (Developments in historic districts) and for a special permit to allow a 200-space public parking garage pursuant to ZR Sections 13-45 and 13-451 (Additional parking spaces for residential growth);

WHEREAS, The proposed actions are requested to facilitate development of a new building containing approximately 279,118.8 zoning square feet of mixed use development: approximately 271,184 zoning square feet of residential use, approximately 7,934.6 zoning square feet of local service/retail use, and a garage, which will serve the general public; and

WHEREAS, The proposed site is participating in the City's inclusionary housing program to provide rental units affordable to households earning below the area median income; and

WHEREAS, The applicant wishes to install two vents in the rear yard, to allow additional venting of the parking garage, and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five approved an application to the Landmark Preservation Commission ("LPC") for a certificate of appropriateness in September 2013; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building will replace a 256 space ground level parking lot, which was located on the Site until approximately October 2014 when the site was closed for environmental remediation; and

WHEREAS, The City Planning Commission ("CPC") approved a special permit for a 363-space public parking garage on the Site on June 23, 2004 and renewed the special permit for an additional three years on June 5, 2008 and for an additional three years on February 12, 2012 with an expiration of August 12, 2014; and

WHEREAS, In 2004 CPC also approved (i) a zoning map amendment from an M1-6M to a C6-4A district for a five and a half block area bounded by Fifth Avenue, West 17 Street, Sixth Avenue and West 22nd Street and (ii) zoning text amendments to ZR Sections 11-44, 23-633 and 35-24 to clarify zoning text, grandfather a previously approved special permit, and allow street wall heights to match adjacent street walls provided that such height does not exceed 150 feet; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building will contain 300 dwelling units, which would permit 60 vehicle parking spaces as a matter of right but demonstrated that according to DCP guidelines, growth in parking has not kept pace with growth in residential population; and

WHEREAS, LPC approved a design for the proposed building that incorporates a straight 185 feet front wall with no front setback; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for special permit for 200 spaces public parking garage and a waiver for front wall set back, rear yard setback and rear yard for developments in historic districts relating to construction of a residential building at 7-13 West 21st Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District.

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N 150086 CMM and N 150087 CMM, 15 Penn Plaza, Application for the renewal of two special Permit (C100049 ZSM and C 100050 ZSM)

WHEREAS, in 2010, the City Planning Commission approved two special permits for the development of "15 Penn Plaza," granted to 401 Hotel REIT, LLC and 401 Commercial LP to facilitate a proposed commercial development on Blocks 805, Lots 40, 1001 & 1002 in Special Midtown District C6-6, located on the superblock between West 32nd Street and West 33rd Street and 6th Avenue and 7th Avenue:

  1. C 100049 ZSM – a special permit pursuant to Sections 81-066(b) and 81-254 of the Zoning Resolution to modify:
    1. The height and setback regulations of Section 81-27 (Alternate Height and Setback Regulations Daylight Evaluation); and
    2. The Mandatory District Plan Elements of Sections 81-42 (Retail Continuity along Designated Streets), 81-43 (Street Wall Continuity Along Designated Streets), 81-45 (Pedestrian Circulation Space), 81-47 (Major Building Entrances), and the design of standards for pedestrian circulation spaces of Section 37-53(f) (Sidewalk Widening);
  2. C 100050 ZSM – a special permit pursuant to Sections 81-541 and 74-634 of the Zoning Resolution to allow a floor area bonus not to exceed 20 percent of the basic floor area ratio permitted by the underlying district regulations for subway station and/or rail mass transit facility improvements; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recommended against approval of the initial granting of the special permits in the appended 2010 resolution, in large part, because there was inadequate proposed mitigation for the development's adverse impacts; and

WHEREAS, Said special permits (C 100049 ZSM & c 10050 ZSM) became effective on August 25, 2010, the date of approval by the City Council; and

WHEREAS, Pursuant to Sections 74-99 and 11-42 of the Zoning Resolution, the special permits lapsed on August 26, 2014; and

WHEREAS, 401 Hotel REIT, LLC and 401 Commercial LP, submitted applications (N 150086 CMM & N 150087) to the City Planning Commission requesting the first three-year renewal of the previously approved special permits, (C 100049 ZSM & C 100050 ZSM); and

WHEREAS, Such renewal may be granted by the City Planning Commission pursuant to Section 11-43 of the Zoning Resolution if it finds that "the facts upon which the authorization or special permit was granted have not substantially changed;" and

WHEREAS, Though Community Board Five had not found evidence that the facts upon which the original permits were granted had substantially changed, the absence of such a finding does not compel the City Planning Commission to renew these special permits; and

WHEREAS, The applications (N-150086 CMM & N 150087 CMM) are not subject to the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure, (ULURP) and do not require a public hearing by the Community Board or the City Planning Commission; and

WHEREAS, The City Planning Commission has asked Community Board Five for its comments and recommendations on the two special permit renewal applications no later than November 14, 2014; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five:

  1. Asks  for a higher standard of sustainable building design for this proposed development to achieve compliance with the most recent version of the LEED Core & Shell Reference Guide and that the expected LEED Certification Level be LEED Platinum by having the  building's tenant build-out guidelines for each of the building's tenants comply with LEED Interior Design & Construction;
  2. Requests that the applicant provide a more robust transit improvement package than the one currently described in its renewal application; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for renewal of two special permits unless the applicant agrees to design and build a LEED Platinum building and provide a more robust package of improvements consistent with those outlined in the Board's 2010 recommendation for denial including: 

  1. An additional major new entrance to Pennsylvania Station which could lead directly to a single-level passageway to Herald Square
  2. Additional improvements to mitigate the environmental impacts of this development such as better systems for truck deliveries, trash pick-up, tree plantings, public space, and other streetscape amenities.

 

Text of CB5's 2010 Reso: 

 

WHEREAS, 401 Commercial LP and 401 Hotel REIT LLC propose to redevelop the current site of the Hotel Pennsylvania with a new 67-story, approximately 1,190 to 1,216-foot tall commercial office building to be known as 15 Penn Plaza; and

WHEREAS, The development site is currently occupied by the 1,700 room Hotel Pennsylvania which was designed by McKim, Mead & White which Community Board Five has previously recommended for landmark designation but the New York Landmark Preservation Commission recently determined that the Hotel did not meet their criteria for designation; and

WHEREAS, The applicants are proposing two optional development scenarios for the site in order to have flexibility to respond to future market conditions: 

1) An office building for a single financial industry tenant with five floors of approximately 340,000 sq. ft. of trading floor use, plus approximately 18,000 sq. ft. of retail use, 509,000 sq. ft. of amenity, lobby, service and loading area space, 418,000 sq. ft. of mechanical space, and 1.53 million sq. ft. of office space for a total of 2.83 million gross sq. ft.; or

2) A slightly smaller office building for multiple tenants that would include approximately 1.89 million sq. ft. of commercial office use, 361,711 sq. ft. of retail space, 307,180 sq. ft. of mechanical space, and 97,131 sq. ft. of amenity, lobby, and service and loading area space for a total of 2.66 million gross sq. ft.; and

WHEREAS, The applicants do not yet have a tenant for the single-tenant scenario; and

WHEREAS, Both scenarios would potentially include 100 below-grade accessory parking spaces, widened sidewalks, various options for truck deliveries and pickups in response to the area's intensely busy traffic, and trees planted on 32nd Street; and

WHEREAS, The single tenant proposal includes a block through loading area and the multi-tenant proposal only includes a single-entry loading dock and neither proposal includes adequate measures to mitigate the small truck and black car traffic that will be generated at this site, and

WHEREAS, The design proposals for both development scenarios are by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects and currently propose to incorporate green construction materials and systems with the goal to achieve or exceed LEED Silver certification; and

WHEREAS, The development site is located partly within a C6-6 zoning district and partly within a C6-4.5 zoning district that has a lower FAR requirement; it is also partially located within the Penn Center Subdistrict of the Special Midtown District; and

WHEREAS, current zoning would permit approximately 1.15 million square feet of floor space on the building lot and in order to build either scenario -- a single tenant at 2.83 million square feet or multiple tenants at 2.66 million square feet -- the applicants would move 245,542 square feet from the adjacent site through a zoning lot merger with the parcel they also own on 6th Avenue that is currently the location of Manhattan Mall.  For additional floor area, the applicants are seeking to:

  • By obtaining Zoning Map and Zoning Text Amendments, add 266,625 square feet from an upzoning from a C6-4.5, which permits 12 FAR, to a C6-6, which permits 15 FAR; and
  • Obtain a Special Permit (ZR 81-541 and 74-634) that would give the project an additional 20 percent of additional floor area, adding 474,000 square feet in exchange for making various improvements to mass transit facilities at, or adjacent to, the development site; and

WHEREAS, The applicants must also obtain:

  • Special permit (ZR 81-066 and 81-254) to modify the height and setback regulations of the Special Midtown District;
  • Special permit (ZR 81-066) to modify the Mandatory District Plan elements pertaining to pedestrian circulation space, street wall continuity, retail continuity and major building entrances; and
  • A Zoning text amendment to define the administrative process for obtaining approvals from the multiple transit operating entities in and around Penn station, and to provide that any bonus floor area for completed rail mass transit improvement that is not utilized in a development is vested and available for use elsewhere on the zoning lot;

 

WHEREAS, The development site shares its block with the 11-story Manhattan Mall and under both development scenarios, the development site and the Mall site will be merged into a single zoning lot and thus any approvals granted to this development proposal would apply to the merged zoning lot; and

WHEREAS, All the entities -- 401 Commercial LP, 401 Hotel REIT LLC and the Manhattan Mall site -- are controlled by Vornado Realty Trust which also controls 11 buildings and 8 million square feet in the area; and

WHEREAS, If the C6-4.5 to C6-6 upzoning is granted to this development proposal and if for any reason the applicants do not proceed with either of the proposed tenant scenarios, by dint of having merged the development site with the adjacent Manhattan Mall site, the upzoning FAR increase can be used for any future development that may take place on the merged lot; and

WHEREAS, As currently proposed, the project would take approximately 4 1/2 years to construct but no timetable has been set for construction to begin, absent confirmation as to which development scenario will be chosen; however any upzoning granted under this ULURP application would remain permanently in effect; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is requesting a 20 percent transit bonus in exchange for relocating and upgrading the existing subway entrances on West 32nd and West 33d Streets, adding a new street elevator at Seventh Avenue and 32nd Street, relocate two subway entrances at the Manhattan Mall site, add a new stairway from the mezzanine level to the IRT express train platform  and making other transit improvements either to mitigate the impact of this development, accommodate the new workers coming to the new office tower, or to provide improvements and alternatives to help meet the significant demands on the existing transit infrastructure from the millions of MTA-NYCT, Port Authority Trans Hudson (PATH), Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and Amtrak passengers and other residents, commuters and visitors who travel through this area daily; and

WHEREAS, With the granting of an easement to permit its widening, the applicants would renovate, including new public access to Manhattan Mall retail tenants, and reopen the pedestrian passageway, often referred to as the Gimbel's Passageway, under the south side of 33rd Street along the length of the merged zoning lot/development site, originally built by the former Gimbel's Department Store; and

WHEREAS, The passageway would be accessed by a stairway from the mezzanine level of the IRT station under 7th Avenue or stairways from the street level and be only 16 feet wide and would likely only be used to avoid bad weather rather than a attractive new way to move from Herald Square to Pennsylvania Station; and

WHEREAS, New subway entrances on 7th Avenue would be required by an as-of-right development and new subway entrances would also be required for any future development on the 6th Avenue site, and

WHEREAS, In the already densely developed area surrounding Penn Station there are several locations where the Zoning Map pointedly designates lower FAR, one of which is at this development project site; Community Board Five is concerned that the upzoning requested in this application would not only violate the intention of the Zoning Map and burden the area with excessive density but also set a troubling precedent and tipping point for future development in the area; and

WHEREAS, The impact of the development of nearby Moynihan Station on the density of the surrounding area, including the sale of Farley Building commercial development rights, is not yet known but could be significant as well as concurrent with the building of 15 Penn Plaza; thus any upzoning at this development site is not only premature given the area's redevelopment future but also a threat to the area's environmental quality while producing no redeeming benefits to the community; and

WHEREAS, The only rationale offered for upzoning the mid-portion of this lot is that the developer would like the option of developing more office space and the Board does not believe this is a sound basis for making decisions on what the permitted density for an area should be; and

WHEREAS, Some of the proposed transit improvements for which the applicants would receive a 20 percent development bonus resemble  repairs and maintenance associated with the applicants' own project and to their own benefit rather than added-value improvements meriting the bonus; and

WHEREAS, The biggest infrastructure problem in this area is the severe overcrowding of the sidewalks and, in particular, the entrance to Pennsylvania Station on 7th Avenue directly across the street from the development site, and

WHEREAS, The development of this site will be directly tied to Pennsylvania Station through a small entryway to the mezzanine under the 7th Avenue IRT and the applicant is proposing a much needed additional stairway from the mezzanine to the express train platform; and

WHEREAS, The development of such a large building on this site presents an opportunity for an additional major entrance to Pennsylvania Station which could lead directly to a single-level passageway to Herald Square and thus greatly improve accessibility to the station from the east and ease some of the existing overcrowding and additional traffic that will be generated by this and other planned developments in the area; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five requests that additional improvements be made to mitigate the environmental impacts of this development such as better systems for truck deliveries, trash pick-up, tree plantings, public space, and other streetscape amenities, including, as a starting point, a block-through loading dock for any proposal; and

WHEREAS, By proposing what would be the third tallest building in New York City and a major addition to the city's skyline, Community Board Five is disappointed that the proposed building/s designs are bulky, uninspired, massive, and fail to seize this opportunity to add beauty and distinction to the New York City skyline and streetscape; and

WHEREAS, By building such an enormous building in this location the applicants will place significant burdens on the neighborhood's traffic, noise, infrastructure, air quality and other quality of life conditions and therefore the transit bonus and upzoning are only justifiable if there are also equally significant improvements to the transit infrastructure in the area, as well as to the community's ability to seek relief from any exceptional increase in density including but not limited to green space, arts facilities, and other public amenities; therefore be it

RESOLVED, That Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for a Zoning Map Amendment and various Zoning Text Amendments, Special Permit for a Floor Area Bonus, Special Permit to Modify Height and Setback, and Acquisition of Easements to permit the development and construction of a new 2,052,667 office building on the current site of the Hotel Pennsylvania on Seventh Avenue between 32nd and 33rd Streets.

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December 2014

7 East 19th Street (Ladies Mile Historic District), application for a Landmarks Preservation Commission report and a Certificate of Appropriateness for façade restoration in connection with a residential conversion of the second floor...

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 11, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 32 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 7 East 19th Street is a five-story neo-Greek cast-iron fronted store building designed by Thomas R. Jackson and constructed in 1885-1886; and

WHEREAS, In connection with a residential conversion of the 2nd Floor pursuant to Z.R. Section 15-20(b), the applicant has applied to the LPC for a report which evidences establishment of a continuing maintenance program for the preservation of the building and a Certificate of Appropriateness for related façade restoration; and

WHEREAS, The façade restoration consists of the following work:

  • Replacing the non-historic storefront infill with a new painted wood infill consisting of double doors in two bays and a window in the third bay, designed to be ADA compliant and to maintain the original cast iron columns;
  • Reconstructing the original elaborate roof element, crowning and ground story cornices, and stylized brackets framing the cornices at each level, all of which are missing from the current façade; and

WHEREAS, The ground floor cornice and brackets will be metal, and the roof element and upper floor cornices and brackets will be painted fiberglass; and

WHEREAS, Small recessed LED lights will be installed above each entrance, but no decorative lighting or signage is proposed as part of this application; and

WHEREAS, The existing fire escapes, which are not an original building element but which were shown in the early tax photograph, will remain; and

WHEREAS, In consultation with LPC, the applicant has attempted to match the original conditions of the building as closely as possible using an early tax photograph and the LPC report, the only evidence of the original conditions found after extensive research; and

WHEREAS, A paint analysis was performed in order to match the original paint colors; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is separately seeking staff-level approval for a non-visible rooftop addition and window restoration and replication; and

WHEREAS, This application will come before Community Board Five's Land Use, Housing and Zoning Committee in connection with the City Planning Commission authorization for the residential conversion required under Z.R. 15-20(b); and

WHEREAS, Although Community Board Five would prefer to see the restoration performed using more historically-appropriate materials, Community Board Five finds that the proposed work is historically appropriate and will provide a significant improvement in the overall condition of the building; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Landmarks Preservation Commission report and a Certificate of Appropriateness for façade restorationin connection with a residential conversion of the second floor pursuant to Z.R. Section 15-20(b) at 7 East 19th Street.

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16 East 18th Street, application for a rooftop addition, new storefront and window replacement

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 11, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 32 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 16 East 18th Street is located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, built in 1902, and is one of many store and loft buildings in the District designed by the prolific firm of Buchman & Fox; and

WHEREAS, This ten-story neo-Renaissance style store and loft building, located on the south side of East 18th Street between Fifth Avenue and Broadway is characteristic of the later development phase of the District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has applied to LPC for approval of a rooftop addition, new storefront and window replacement and LPC Staff has agreed to consider the window modifications, leaving only the rooftop addition and new storefront for consideration at an LPC Public Hearing; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to restore the ground floor storefront, which was altered over the years, and to remove the metal cladding and restore the piers, replace the infill with wood doors at each end and a painted metal storefront, add a wood cornice above the storefront; and

WHEREAS, They also propose to construct a 10½' rooftop addition with a 4 ½' metal railing on top and a stair bulkhead rising 8½' above the roof addition (19' from roof deck); and

WHEREAS, This addition at the central portion of the roof is brick on the east and west elevations, and will be finished to exactly match the existing west façade; and

WHEREAS, A mock-up shows that the westerly portion of the addition will be minimally visible from the street only because there is an adjacent three story firehouse which is low enough for it to be seen; and

WHEREAS, The building already has an LPC permit to remove the existing water tank and replace it with a new one; and

WHEREAS, Given objections from CB5 to the use of cast stone to replace granite piers at the base of the building, the applicant has agreed and committed to use granite; and

WHEREAS, The proposed improvements and other repairs will upgrade the building in line with other properties on this block and will be harmonious with the District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a rooftop addition and new storefront at 16 East 18th Street.

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October 2014

30 W. 24th Street (bet. 5th Ave & Ave of the Americas), application for proposed new storefront

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 09, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 2 abstained.

WHEREAS, 30-32 West 24th Street, located between Fifth Avenue and Sixth Avenue, in the Ladies Mile Historic District is a twelve-story neo-Gothic store-and-loft building, designed by Browne & Almiroty, and constructed by and for the owner, Marmac Construction Company in 1910-11; and

WHEREAS, According to the designation report, the south side of West 24th Street between Fifth Avenue and Sixth Avenue is dominated by store and loft buildings which share certain characteristics including façade designs based on neo-Renaissance styles; and

WHEREAS, The designation report also states that "examples of original storefront configurations or elements survive at" 30-32 West 24th Street and that "its first-story metal storefront (partly intact) has a recent central entrance flanked by large windows on plain metal bulkheads and pivoting sash transom windows"; and

WHEREAS, An application has been received seeking permission to remove and replace the existing storefront, light sconces, and service entry doors and transom panel, and to install new non-visible LED lighting at the second floor sills, lower and upper cornices; and

WHEREAS, The existing light sconces, which are utilitarian and non-historic, would be replaced with custom crafted blown-glass sconces befitting the building's neo-Gothic style; and

WHEREAS, The existing service entry, which is composed of plain, utilitarian metal doors and transom panel, would be replaced with wood-framed glass doors and transom windows that would mimic the configuration of building entrance doors and transom windows; and

WHEREAS, The existing storefront doors, windows and bulkheads would be removed and replaced with a metal framed window system, which would provide the option to have a contemporary, open-air style storefront; and

WHEREAS, The proposed modifications to the sills and cornice LED lighting scheme, new light sconces and service entrance are enhancements that are sympathetic to the building's historic neo-Gothic style; however, the proposed reconfiguration of the storefront windows and bulkheads would involve removal of historic building fabric; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to remove and replace the existing storefront at 30-32 West 24th Street, as we strongly believe that every effort should be made to retain and maintain surviving historic storefront configurations and elements in the Ladies Mile Historic District.

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Request For Evaluation (RFE) for interior and exterior landmark designation for the Park Lane Hotel, located at 36 Central Park South

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 09, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 2 abstained.

WHEREAS, East Garden LLC., William Kaplan as its sole member, John Furth Peachy and Mark Mueller have filed a request for evaluation (RFE) to designate the Park Lane Hotel as an interior and exterior landmark; and

WHEREAS, The applicants filed a RFE with the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) on March 31st 2014, and LPC rejected their request on May 7th 2014 but granted that the decision could be reconsidered if new information was provided; and

WHEREAS, The applicants have expanded their research and are now seeking the opinion of Community Board Five; and

WHEREAS, The Park Lane Hotel, is a 46 story building located at 36 Central Park South facing Central Park on a mid-block site between 5th & 6th Avenues; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by Emery Roth & Sons and constructed between 1967 and 1971 for the prominent NYC developer Harry Helmsley and his real-estate company, Helmsley-Spear, Inc.; and 

WHEREAS, The building is a 46 story slab resting on a raised two story L-shaped base, clad with glass and limestone on the Central Park South and 58th Street facades and face brick at the party walls; and

WHEREAS, The North façade is divided by five bays of windows that run the full vertical height of the building and culminate with rounded arches, and are separated by limestone piers, while the side walls are treated with face bricks; and

WHEREAS, The 58th street base features a porte-cochere, and the building features a courtyard connecting 58th Street to Central Park South; and

WHEREAS, The lobby and second floor rooms, including the restaurant, bar, and ballroom were decorated by interior designer Tom Lee; and

WHEREAS, The central lobby connecting Central Park South to 58th Street feature two varieties of travertine marble on the walls and floor, crystal chandeliers, Scalamandre drapery and Wilton carpets; and

WHEREAS, The second floor restaurant features barrel vaulted ceiling, while Harry's Bar features dark wood finishes; and 

WHEREAS, The building's architecture has been characterized by architecture critics, including Robert A.M. Stern and Paul Goldberger, as well as preservation advocates, such as the Municipal Art Society and the Historic Districts Council, as banal, undistinguished and mediocre; and

WHEREAS, The interior is neither unique nor original; and

WHEREAS, The building does not feature a unique architectural style nor a special historic character; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the Request for Evaluation of the Park Lane Hotel for interior and exterior landmark.

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September 2014

41-45 West 17th Street and 38-42 West 18th Street, application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to construct a new building and to restore two historic buildings

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 11, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 36 in favor, 1 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 41 West 17th Street, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, is presently a parking lot running through to West 18th Street; 45 West 17th Street is a 6-story block-thru building constructed in 1907 currently occupied by Adorama, a retail camera business, and commercial offices; and

WHEREAS, 38 West 18th Street is presently a parking lot running through to 17th Street; 40 West 18th Street is a 4-story cast iron façade building constructed in 1858 currently occupied by Adorama and commercial offices; 42 West 18th Street is a 6-story block-thru building with a façade made of white terra cotta, also occupied by Adorama and commercial offices; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new development will occupy the current parking lots at 41-43 West 17th Street through to 38 West 18th Street.; and 

WHEREAS, The proposed building will be composed of two towers with facades on 17th Street and 18th Street:

-       at 41-43 West 17th Street, the proposed tower would be 18 stories and 185' in height,  with a glass façade and clad with a modern wire mesh-layer elements, and

-       at 38 West 18th St., the proposed tower would be 17 stories (170'), to be constructed using pre-cast concrete with a tapered profile, and increasing window size from bottom to top; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five is concerned about preserving and maintaining the historic character of the Ladies' Mile Historic District which is composed of predominately cast-iron, stone, brick and concrete façades; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds the height of the proposed building not contextual; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five deems the proposed design and materials, namely the use of wire mesh for the 18th St. facade, the fenestration design of the 17th St. facade and the height for the new construction to be inappropriate for the character of the Historic District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the request by the applicant to construct a new building at 41-45 West 17th Street and 38-42 West 18th Street, utilizing the proposed design and materials.

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Application for Arsenal Entrance Improvements / 64th Street by the Central Park Conservancy

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 11, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 35 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained, 2 present not entitled to vote.

WHEREAS, Central Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux in 1858, is a scenic Landmark designated as such in 1974; and

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservancy had taken a leading role in revitalization and maintenance of the park since 1980; and

WHEREAS, The Conservancy has presented a plan to make the 64th Street entry accessible with a ADA compliant ramp; and

WHEREAS, The ramp was carefully designed to be inconspicuous in the landscape, including a slope low enough in most places that a hand railing is not required; and

WHEREAS, The application includes enhanced planting to make the ramp unobtrusive; and

WHEREAS, The Conservancy satisfied the committee that it has explored a number of design options to conclude that the scheme presented was the optimal solution; and

WHEREAS, There was some concern expressed with respect to the removal of a small, approximately 4 foot section, of the historic perimeter wall by a minority of the committee; and

WHEREAS, It was noted that in that in the adjacent area there are a number of displaced pavers which are a tripping hazard and an impediment to accessibility; and

WHEREAS, The Conservancy staff agreed to survey the area and add pavement repairs to the scope of this project; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Central Park Conservancy's application to improve the entry to Central Park at East 64th Street.

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Application for the Reconstruction of Five Central Park Lake Boat Landings by the Central Park Conservancy

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 11, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 28 in favor, 9 opposed, 1 abstained, 2 present not entitled to vote.

WHEREAS, Central Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux in 1858, is a scenic landmark designated as such in 1974; and

WHEREAS, The Central Park Conservancy had taken a leading role in revitalization and maintenance of the park since 1980; and

WHEREAS, The Conservancy has undertaken a 7-year phased plan to revitalize the lake, surrounding landscape, and structures; and

WHEREAS, Each prior phase has been reviewed and approved by Community Board Five; and

WHEREAS, The final phase of the project is to reconstruct five of the original six boat landings along the shoreline of the Lake. The small, pavilion-like structures served to enhance the scenic enjoyment and recreational experience of one of the Park's most important landscapes; and

WHEREAS, Project will construct more faithful recreations of the original boat landings (based on historic photographs) on the existing sites of the four landings constructed in the 1970s, and to rebuild the landing that historically existed on the Ramble shoreline between Oak Bridge and the Cave inlet. The landings proposed, and their architectural styles, are as follows:

1. Wagner Cove Landing - Rustic

2. Western Shore Landing - Victorian

3. Hernshead Landing (on West Shore near Hernshead) - Victorian

4. Bank Rock Landing (near Oak Bridge) - Rustic

5. Bow Bridge landing - Victorian (no roof); therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Central Park Conservancy's application to reconstruction five boat landings on the lake in Central Park.

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41-45 West 17th Street and 38-42 West 18th Street, application for a report stating that a restoration and maintenance program in perpetuity has been established, pursuant to Art 74-711...

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 11, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 37 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstain.

WHEREAS, 45 West 17th Street is a 6-story block-thru building constructed in 1907, currently occupied by Adorama and commercial offices; and

WHEREAS, 40 West 18th Street is a 4-story cast iron façade building constructed in 1858, currently occupied by Adorama and commercial offices; 42 West 18th Street is a 6-story block-thru building with a façade made of white terra cotta, occupied by Adorama and commercial offices; and

WHEREAS, both buildings have suffered extensive deterioration from neglect from the present owner and remain surrounded by scaffolding due to safety concerns; and

WHEREAS, according to residents of the block, this scaffolding has been in place for many years without the owner making any significant effort to restore the existing buildings and is considered an eyesore and nuisance; and

WHEREAS, the owner is seeking waivers from the Department of City Planning for front wall height, facade and rear yard set back

-       Rear yard reduced by 10 feet (from 60' to 50')

-       Front façade wall on 17th street to be 35 feet higher (from 150' to 185')

-       Exemption from sliver rule on 18th Street to allow for 175' high façade (Definition of a Sliver Building: A tall building or enlargement that is 45 feet wide or less is commonly called a sliver building. Such buildings are generally restricted to a height equal to the width of the abutting street or 100 feet, whichever is less. – Source: Dept. of City Planning), and

WHEREAS, these waiver requests will be reviewed and addressed by Community Board Five's Land Use and Zoning Committee at a later date; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to art 74-711, the developers would restore both existing buildings to their original condition including using replaced or reconstructed materials matching the characteristics of the time period they were constructed in; and

WHEREAS, some of the restorative work includes:

  • Repairing and restoring the painted copper cornice to its original patinated dark green color;
  • Replacing all non-historic aluminum windows and mullions and deteriorated historic wood windows with new double-hung wood window frames and sash;
  • Installing a new wood and glass storefront at 45 West 17th street which reproduces conditions documented in historic photographs;
  • Restoring, repairing and/or replacing the historic terra cotta elements to match the original in size, shape, profile texture and glaze color;
  • Replacing any severely deteriorated ornament or features based on historic photographs; and

WHEREAS, the applicant would provide a continuing maintenance report, to be approved by Landmarks Preservation Commission, to the City Planning Commission, pursuant to Section 74-711 of the Zoning Resolution; and 

WHEREAS, the only new addition to the existing buildings would be a rear extension to 40 West 18th Street of 588 sf total split between three levels; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed full restoration of these historically and architecturally significant buildings in the Ladies' Mile Historic District and a continuing maintenance plan in perpetuity once the buildings have been restored.

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February 2014

160 Lexington Avenue (NW corner of 30th Street), application to install louvers at the 2nd floor and 7th floor (roof), a louvered door at cellar areaway, new lighting fixtures on the 1st floor and cellar levels, and an ADA intercom at the 1st floor

At the regularly scheduled monthly Executive Committee meeting of Community Board Five on Tuesday, February 11, 2014, the following resolution was unanimously passed:

WHEREAS 160 Lexington Avenue is a five-story brick and stone neo-classical institutional building designed by Harvey Wiley Corbett of the firm Bell & Corbett, which was constructed in 1908-1909 as the Pratt-New York Phoenix School of Design and designated as an individual landmark in 1977; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has applied to LPC to perform the following work:

  • Remove existing skylight and protruding exhaust duct and install new louvers to match the adjacent roof in the existing skylight frame at the 7th floor (roof) on the north side of the building;
  • Remove existing large louvers on the upper portion of the northern 2nd floor window facing Lexington Avenue and replace with glass within existing mullions to restore, and install smaller louvers within two bottom sections of both 2nd floor windows  facing Lexington Avenue;
  • Install a new black metal louvered door to conceal compressors in a below grade areaway  at the cellar level below the Lexington Avenue sidewalk at the eastern side of the building;
  • Install a new small surface mounted black lighting fixture above an existing black metal door at an ADA-accessible side entrance along 30th Street;
  • Install a new lighting fixture below grade to replace a temporary flood light at the cellar entrance below the Lexington Avenue sidewalk at the western side of the building; and
  • Install an ADA intercom on a railing near the ADA-accessible door along 30th Street; and

WHEREAS, During the LPC review process, the owner proceeded with the work that is the subject of the application prior to presenting such work to Community Board Five and prior to receiving LPC approval; therefore, the present application is to legalize such work; and 

WHEREAS, Having reviewed the changes as made to the building, Community Board Five finds the  work to have minimal visual impact on the building and to be an overall improvement of its prior condition; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five has expressed a desire for more historic lighting fixtures and for the 7th floor (roof) louvers to better match the existing roof; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has agreed consider different lighting fixtures and ways reduce the visual impact of the 7th floor (roof) louvers in consultation with LPC staff; and

WHEREAS, Although Community Board Five would have preferred to have had input prior to such work being performed, Community Board Five appreciates the applicant's willingness to consider changes in response to Community Board Five's concerns; and

WHERAS, Community Board Five finds the overall work to be appropriate to the landmark; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to install louvers at the 2nd floor and 7th floor (roof), a louvered door at cellar areaway, new lighting fixtures on the 1st floor and cellar levels, and an ADA intercom at the 1st floor of 160 Lexington Avenue, provided the 7th floor louvers color match existing roof and lighting fixtures are more respectful of historic nature of building.

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APPLICATION FOR A CERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS FOR ALTERATIONS TO THE INTERIOR LANDMARK THE PALM COURT AT THE PLAZA HOTEL FIFTH AVENUE AT CENTRAL PARK SOUTH

At the regularly scheduled monthly Community Board Five Executive Committee meeting on Tuesday, February 11, 2014, the following resolution was unanimously passed:

WHEREAS, The Plaza Hotel (which was constructed in 1905-07 by Henry Hardenbergh in neo-Classical style with the Palm Court decorated by E. Spencer Hall & Co., the caryatids from Pottier & Stymus and the column capitals, metal mouldings and wreaths inset into the floor by Winslow Bros. Company) is a treasured individual landmark designated in 2005 by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission; and

WHEREAS, The main feature of the Palm Court is its classical pilastered perimeter walls, decorative plaster molding and crowns, and the stained glass skylight; and

WHEREAS, The proposed design intent of the renovation is to maintain view corridors through the space to historic decorative surfaces, yet to instill within its confines new interior design which reactivates the space to its former vibrancy and charm; and

WHEREAS, The main component of the design is a central freestanding oval shaped bar with a ~8' high translucent cast glass sculptural light feature at its epicenter, standing approximately 14' tall, with new concealed floor mounted electrical points and plumbing to serve the bar; and

WHEREAS, Detailed drawings were provided but a three-dimensional rendering that would have to depicted the sculptural feature in the space was not provided; and

WHEREAS, The bar finish materials are curved, lacquered wood panels and bar back with illuminated glass bottle display, leather wrapped polished chrome hand rail, chrome illuminated foot rail; and

WHEREAS, The existing concealed recessed lighting fixture will be upgraded to indirect cove lighting and concealed lay light illumination, in an effort to brighten and activate poor illumination and color rendition; and

WHEREAS, Other design components are furnishings, tables, chairs, custom banquettes, custom carpet, decorative palm trees and other decorative floral installations intended to enhance the lively classical orangerie ambiance; and

WHEREAS, Two new banquettes will screen service points, removing inappropriate mirrors screens; and

WHEREAS, The only visible lighting additions are 6 pendant hung chandeliers at the north and south coffered areas flanking the existing skylight canopy, which are not interpretive in style and must be reworked to be more in keeping with the neo-Classical Revival style of the room or adjacent crystal chandeliers; and

WHEREAS, CB5 strongly suggests the original marble flooring be repaired and/ or restored at a minimum where visible and not concealed by the new carpet; and

WHEREAS, The design of the lampshades attached to the artificial palm tree trunks distracts from the organic nature of the plants and should be removed; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the applications of The Palm Court at The Plaza Hotel, subject to the heretofore referenced recommendations.

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909 Broadway – re-submission of application for storefront renovation, second floor window replacements, signage replacement, awning addition, rooftop deck and railing addition, elevator bulkhead addition and stair bulkhead addition

At the regularly scheduled monthly Community Board Five Executive Committee meeting on Tuesday, February 11, 2014, the following resolution was unanimously passed:

WHEREAS, 909 Broadway is a three story retail building located between East 20th and 21st Streets in the Ladies' Mile Historic District ("District"); and

WHEREAS, The applicant, MADURA USA, a retail establishment, has resubmitted an application originally submitted in November 2013 to renovate the facade of the building; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recommended denial of the original application primarily due to concerns about the alterations of an existing window on the second floor and the use of a multi-color scheme; both that were deemed not appropriate for the Site or harmonious with the District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to alter the second floor windows of the building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to add signage to the building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to add third floor awnings on the building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to add a cornice above the 2nd floor window; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to build a rooftop deck & railing addition on the building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to build elevator and stair bulkhead additions on the building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is proposing to replace the existing windows on the second floor with a new window design that would eliminate the transom over the central pane; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed renovation will include the use of a single color scheme of blue (the Applicant's brand color) for the building instead of the previously proposed multi-color scheme; and which is appropriate for the Site and harmonious with the District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's rooftop, railing and bulkhead additions will have no visibility from the any thoroughfares; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for storefront renovation, second floor window replacements, signage, awning addition, rooftop deck & railing addition, elevator bulkhead addition and stair bulkhead addition at 909 Broadway, between 20th and 21st Streets.

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July 2014

30 East 30 Street, The Martha Washington Hotel, application for certificate of appropriateness of new signage

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 39 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 30 East 30 Street (29th and 30th Streets between Madison Avenue and Park Avenue) is located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, This property is landmarked 12 story building having been opened in 1903 and initially used as the first-of-its-kind hotel for professional women until 1998 when the hotel began to provide rooms for both men and women; and 

WHEREAS, This property is described in the Designation Report as follows:

"The Renaissance Revival style Martha Washington Hotel runs between East 29th and East 30th Streets with nearly identical street facades. The main entrance is centered in the 7-bay wide facade on East 30th Street while the East 29th Street facade has two symmetrical entrances, one on each side. Twelve stories high, the building is symmetrically arranged with a tall ground story and piano nobile marked by rusticated limestone and topped by a cornice. The main section is faced with tan brick with rustication along each side, and the top has ornamented terra-cotta panels on the 12th story and a broad, overhanging cornice. Balconettes punctuate the facades, along with bracketed cornices, Palladian windows and quoins. Flagpoles are mounted on the railings at the 3rd story"; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is seeking to re-brand the Hotel with the original "Martha Washington" name and install signage including (2) banners (7'-0" x 10'-0") to be hung from the existing flagpoles, (1) painted sign (10'-0" x 24'-0") to be painted over the existing faded painted sign at the top of the east façade, (1) bronze sign (1'-3" x 6'-1") over the eastern entry on 29th Street, (1) lit bronze sign (3'-2" x 15'-7") at the second story centered on the 29th street façade, and (2) equally spaced bronze plaques (12" x 24") at ground level on the 29th street façade; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has completed and included as part of its application an extensive amount of research and has exercised considerable restraint and sensitivity to the original design and purpose of the Landmarked Building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application by the Martha Washington Hotel at 30 East 30 Street to install (2) new banners and (5) signs on the 29th street and eastern façades.

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30 Rockefeller Plaza, application for interior alteration work on the mezzanine within three existing storefront vitrines and across a portion of the ceiling

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 38 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained, 1 present not entitled to vote.

WHEREAS, 30 Rockefeller Plaza is an Art Deco style skyscraper lobby, designed by the Associated Architects and built in 1931-33 as part of an Art Deco style office, commercial and entertainment complex, which comprises the Rockefeller Center Individual Landmark; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to perform alterations within the interior designated mezzanine area in order to delineate a waiting area for The Rainbow Room; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work includes the installation of static LCD screens and platinum mirrors at the return, soffits and sills within three existing interior storefront vitrines along the south wall of the mezzanine for the display of Rainbow Room and Art Deco-inspired imagery; and

WHEREAS, The 5 foot square LCD screens would be installed approximately 20 inches behind the existing glass and would not damage or impact the existing bronze trim, bronze frames, stone or glass of the vitrines; and

WHEREAS, The LCD screens would be outside of the designate area, although visible from within the designated area; and

WHEREAS, The applicant represented that the LCD screens will not have the capacity for moving imagery, that the static images will not change frequently, and that the LCD screens will be used only for Rainbow Room branding and not for event or other third-party advertising; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work also includes the installation of a new removable Art Deco graphic film on the ceiling of a portion of the mezzanine to define the space of the waiting area; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work is appropriate for the style and aesthetic of the building and would be removable and reversible without damage to the historic fabric of the designated interior; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for interior alteration work on the mezzanine within three existing storefront vitrines and across a portion of the ceiling at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, provided that the LCD screens will not display moving imagery, the static images will not change frequently so as to give the appearance of moving imagery, and the LCD screens will not be used for event or other third-party advertising.

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610 6th Avenue, Application to move signage over main entry on 6th Avenue and to add two advertising flags on the 18th Street façade

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 39 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 610 6th Avenue, originally named the "Price Building," is a Beaux-Arts inspired commercial building on the Southeast corner of 6th Avenue and 18th Street, within the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, Old Navy, seeks to move the store's sign from its current position over the center of the awning on the 6th Avenue façade to an off-center position to avoid being partially blocked by an existing tree and to add two flag poles and banners to the 18th Street façade of the building for advertising purposes; and

WHEREAS, Taking cues from the building's Beaux-Arts style, the store's sign currently sits centered directly below the building's original "Price Building" sign and centered directly above the awning on the 6th Avenue façade; and

WHEREAS, During some months of the year, the sign is partially blocked by the leaves of a tree that the Applicant planted in front of the building in the 1990s; and

WHEREAS, Moving the store's sign from the center of the awning would be counter to the principal of symmetry, which is fundamental to the Beaux-Arts design of the building and moreover characteristic of the Ladies Mile Historic District as a whole; and   

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed move would alter the 6th Avenue façade and negatively impact the harmony of the District; and

WHEREAS, The Landmarks Preservation Commission does not allow the installation of flags or banners to buildings within the Ladies Mile Historic District as of right, and

WHEREAS, The Applicant seeks to install two flags that are 14 feet tall and over 3 feet wide, which would significantly block the 18th Street façade from view and add clutter to the street; and

WHEREAS, Pending Staff level review at the Landmarks Preservation Commission, the Applicant will replace two existing American Flags on the 6th Avenue façade with flags advertising the Old Navy Brand; and

WHEREAS, Pending Staff level review by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, Applicant will further increase store signage by adding the brand name to the 18th Street façade's awning; and

WHEREAS, The Price Building's Beaux-Arts style is characteristic of the district and contributes to the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Although the Committee recognizes the Applicant's desire to advertise its brand, the proposed flags on the 18th Street façade are excessively large, block the building's impressive façade, further clutter the district with commercial signage, and prove unnecessary for marketing purposes, given the existing signage on the 6th Avenue façade and the proposed additions of two advertising flags on the 6th Avenue façade and the signage on the awning of the 18th Street façade; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the request by Old Navy to move the store's sign from its current position over the center of the awning on the 6th Avenue façade and to add two flagpoles to the 18th Street façade of the building for advertising purposes.

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Resolution on report from SL Green on the “Harmonious relationship” between the building at One Vanderbilt Avenue (42nd to 43rd Sts., Vanderbilt to Madison Avenues) and Grand Central Terminal

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 28 in favor, 9 opposed, 1 abstained, 2 present not entitled to vote.

WHEREAS, SL Green is proposing to transfer unused development rights from a landmarked building located at 110 East 42nd Street, formerly known as the Bowery Savings Bank within the Grand Central Subdistrict Core to a receiving site located between 42nd & 23nd Streets, and between Madison Avenue and Vanderbilt Avenue, pursuant to Section 81-63 of the Zoning Resolution, and

WHEREAS, Pursuant to Section 81-631 of the Zoning Resolution, and according to an Interim Declaration dated November 15, 2010, made by applicant, SL Green is obligated to seek a report from the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), establishing the harmonious relationship between the proposed building at One Vanderbilt Avenue and Grand Central Terminal, and

WHEREAS, The current zoning allows for a maximum 21.6 FAR and SL Green is also applying for a Zoning Text change to DCP that would permit a FAR 30 building, and

WHEREAS, The proposed building submitted for review has a 30 FAR, and

WHEREAS, Grand Central Terminal's landmark and monumental design has been noted for its massive and symmetrical scale, use of rich materials, the innovative use of interior viaducts, ramps, and large expanses of glass, and daring structural design; and

WHEREAS, In comparison, the proposed One Vanderbilt reflects these same characteristics by way of:

•        The use of rich materials on the proposed building's façade, ceilings, flooring, including publicly accessible spaces

•        The use of aluminum scrims and terra cotta spandrel panels in the proposed building's curtain wall, which re-interprets the three dimensional façades of nearby historic buildings

•       Diagonal elements throughout One Vanderbilt's façade, such as those in the terra cotta spandrel panels, are seemingly paying homage to Grand Central Terminal's noteworthy ramped passageways

•        Innovative structural support systems to enable the construction of a super tall tower with a cantilevered design; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building would have a low-iron clear glass and metal base with off-white terracotta glazed tile spandrels reminiscent of Guastavino tiles used inside Grand Central Terminal, and

WHEREAS, The glass tower would taper, and reach 1300 feet, or 1375 feet with its spire, and

WHEREAS, The glass base would offer broader visibility onto the south west corner of Grand Central Terminal, and

WHEREAS, The ground floor would be open to the public and serve as a public waiting area, and

WHEREAS, The ground floor interior space would feature a vertical vegetal wall, and

WHEREAS, Concerns have been raised that the proposed building's asymmetrical façade, use of glass and cacophonous base do not relate harmoniously to the Grand Central Terminal, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the harmoniousness report for the proposed building at One Vanderbilt, with the condition and understanding that the developer and his design and architectural team address the issues raised by Community Board Five and continue to work with Community Board Five, through a series of meetings, on a new iteration of the design to address our specific concerns.

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June 2014

30 Rockefeller Plaza, application to replace illuminated signage at the top of 30 Rockefeller Plaza and replace building signage at the four ground floors

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 12, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 26 in favor, 3 opposed, 2 abstained, 1 present not entitled to vote.

WHEREAS, 30 Rockefeller Plaza is an Art Deco style skyscraper lobby, designed by the Associated Architects and built in 1931-33 as part of an Art Deco style office, commercial and entertainment complex, which comprises the Rockefeller Center Individual Landmark; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, Comcast, wants to replace the signage at the top of 30 Rockefeller Plaza and replace building signage at the four ground floors due to the purchase by Comcast of GE's 49% stake in NBCUniversal.  The changes are as follows

-       Replacing the three illuminated GE signs at the top of 30 Rockefeller with Comcast sign which includes the Comcast name and the iconic NBC Peacock.  The existing signs are a third generation signage following RCA and GE and were reviewed by the Landmarks Commission in 1987.

-       The proposed work involved replacing the three illuminated signs on the north, south and west elevations.  It will incorporate white LED lighting technology to match the existing neon tube lighting, and the san-serif letter fonts of Comcast sign will evoke the original RCA letters

-       At the base of the building, the incised letter at the Rockefeller Plaza, Avenue of the Americas, West 49th and West 50th Street entries will be changed from the 'GE Building' to the 'Comcast Building' with the NBC Peacock logo.  The new incised letters will be cut into monolithic Deer Isle granite slabs matching the original material.  LPC approved this modification when the building's name changed in 1989 from the 'RCA Building' to the 'GE Building;' and

WHEREAS, The purpose of the modifications is to allow the building to continue to be branded by ownership; and

WHEREAS, Although some concern about the use of the peacock logo as part of signage was expressed, the proposed applications are not altering the historic fabric of the building, nor are they obstructing the view from the observatory deck; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to change the signage at 30 Rockefeller Plaza.

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500 Fifth Avenue, application by a retail tenant for a Certificate of Appropriateness for a new storefront and signage to the exterior landmarks designated in 2010

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 12, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 30 in favor, 0 opposed, 2 abstained.

WHEREAS, 500 Fifth Avenue, located on the Northwest corner of 42nd Street and 5th Avenue, was constructed in 1929-31 by Shreve, Lamb & Harmon Associates, concurrently with their Empire State Building specializing in skyscraper design; and

WHEREAS, The building is 59 stories tall, in the Art deco / Art Modern style, designed to the maximum height & bulk allowable under 1916 zoning code with multiple setbacks and light court, sheathed in limestone, terra cotta, and buff brick and the facades are enriched with carefully scaled Art Deco motifs; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, retailer Zara, wishes to replace the storefronts on 5th Avenue and 42nd Street as well as the windows on the 2nd and 3rd floor; and,

WHEREAS, The original stone and decorative art deco colored metal spandrel panels to remain on 2nd and 3rd floors as well as including a louver for ventilation on the 3rd floor on the 42nd St façade; and

WHEREAS, The storefronts will consist of custom metal mullions with bronze finish & clear glazing, with granite base, and metal curtain 18" behind the glass which are harmonious with the original architectural fabric; and

WHEREAS, The sign band consisting of 6 ¼" high x 3'-6" long white translucent letters on aluminum frame with bronze finish will be internally illuminated with LED light fixture; and

WHEREAS, There is no proposed change to the building's limestone and black granite main entrance on 5th Avenue, which is stylized with gilded palmettos & capped in allegorical relief by sculpture by Edmond Amateis; and

WHEREAS, This design will become the Master Plan for the remaining retail storefronts and windows up to and including the 4th floor; and 

WHEREAS, The applicant has revised their design to address committees previous comments and worked with the LPC Staff to incorporate their comments; and

WHEREAS, Although concerns were expressed that automated sliding double doors are not historically accurate, the applicant had a history of problems caused by the stack-effect created by vestibules which led to problems with door closing and its hardware they felt sliding doors are the most feasible technical option; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Certificate of Appropriateness for 500 Fifth Avenue, between 42nd and 43rd Streets.

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1155 Broadway, The Broadway Plaza Hotel, application for legalization of installation of new canopy and signage

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 12, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 30 in favor, 1 opposed, 2 abstained.

WHEREAS, 1155 Broadway (SW corner West 27th Street) is located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, This property is a non-contributing 13 story steel building with brick and granite facing having been constructed in 1991 and converted to a transient hotel in 2000; and 

WHEREAS, This property is described in the Designation Report as follows:

Broadway: Six-story, three bay brick- and granite-faced base; non-historic street-level storefronts, box awnings, signs, security gates, and entryway to the upper floors; non-historic window awnings at the second story; seven-story tower, four bays; sliding casements; projecting sills; brick panels; through-the-wall air-conditioning units; non-historic lighting. 

West 27 Street: Six-story, three bay brick- and granite-faced base; non-historic street-level storefronts, box awnings, signs, and security gates; non-historic window awnings at the second story; Seven story, seven bays tower; similar to the Broadway facade; non-historic canvas sign applied to the facade. South elevation: Brick; elevator bulkhead on roof. Roof: Brick penthouse and terrace enclosed with iron railing; and

WHEREAS, Historically it had been a three story building to which 10 stories were added with new facades during a drastic alteration in 1991 designed by the architectural firm Elfenbein/Cox, Inc. for owner Peter Lo Duca; and

WHEREAS, The building had a maroon canopy installed in 2000, prior to the Designation of the Historic District June 26, 2001, for signage purposes; and

WHEREAS, This canopy was damaged by Hurricane Sandy and subsequently removed leaving non-original granite facade elements exposed to view; and

WHEREAS, The building owner is requesting LPC legalization of a new black canopy with a blue horizontal stripe and white lettering wrapping around the entire building, above the first floor, identifying the hotel; this design includes a 12" X 6" marquee-like awning projection on the Broadway facade of the building at the main hotel entrance, all elements installed without prior LPC permit; and

WHEREAS, According to the Applicant, the canopy and signage are intended as an interim measure for the next two years when a more historically harmonious design for building signage for the Historic District might be developed; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the request by the Broadway Plaza Hotel at 1155 Broadway for legalization of canopy and signage and requests that LPC deny the application since there is no historical basis or justification for its approval and CB5 requests that the Applicant be asked by LPC to prepare a Master Plan for storefront design and signage in conformity to the character of the Historic District.

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1250 Avenue of the Americas, application to remove the three existing marquees & install one new marquee in the center bay, and for lighting upgrade

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 12, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 19 in favor, 10 opposed, 2 abstained, 1 present not entitled to vote.

WHEREAS, 1250 Avenue of the Americas, historically referred to as the RCA Building West, is a sixteen-story extension of the RCA building and like its taller neighbor was completed in 1933.  It has served as office spaces for NBC since its completion; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove three existing marquees and the installation of one new marquee in the center bay, as follows

-     Removal of the three existing marquees,

-     Installation of a new two-tiered black anodized metal marquee with new LED lighting to replicate neon lighting, designed as a contemporary interpretation of the two original marquees that remain along West 49th and West 50th Streets

-   The new design incorporates Art-Deco inspired details and new LED lighting.  The signage on the marquee will be associated with the Tonight Show which returned to NBC's Studios at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in February of 2014; and

WHEREAS, Concern has been expressed that the proposed marquee would obstruct the Barry Faulkner's colorful mosaic, Intelligence Awakening Mankind, that graces the loggia of 1250 Avenue of the Americas since its installation in 1933; and

WHEREAS, The three entry bays along Avenue of the Americas have been infilled with marquees since the early 1980s and when the building was designated in 1985 these marquees were already in place and were comprised of solid sheet-metal slabs that extended out from the three portals; and 

WHEREAS, In the 1990s, these marquees were replaced with three new LPC-approved marquees in the same location; and

WHEREAS, The purpose of the removal and installation of the marquees is to signal the new audience entrance to the building and provide way-finding for audience members and studio-tour guests; and

WHEREAS, The proposed marquee is detailed as a new element, one that blends with the building's architectural features and signals the Tonight Show's 60 year-association with 30 Rockefeller Plaza; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to upgrade the lighting by replacing vertical light fixtures on the eastern face of the columns of the loggia, with LED indirect light fixtures that would illuminate the mosaic; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to remove three marquees, add a new marquee, and replace light fixtures at 1250 Avenue of the Americas.

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May 2014

35 East 21st Street, application for proposed new storefront and bulkhead.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, May 08, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 34 in favor, 1 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 33-35 & 37-39 East 21st Street is a twin building, in the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, 33-35 East 21st Street is a ten-story neo-Renaissance store and loft building constructed in 1905-06 by noted Chicago architectural firm of Daniel Burnham & Co.; and

WHEREAS, 37-39 East 21st Street is a ten-story store and loft building designed by John W. Stevens for the John W. Stevens Bldg Co. and constructed in 1902-03, and the building was expanded by the addition of 33-35 East 21st Street, which was designed as an extension to the Mercantile Building; and

WHEREAS, The first floor of both buildings has been modernized prior to the designation of the building in 1989; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to install a new bulkhead to the roof, a new storefront to replace existing, a black fabric retractable canopies with signage; and

WHEREAS, The proposed bulkhead is minimally visible; and

WHEREAS, The proposed storefront design is using glass and aluminum; and

WHEREAS, The proposed canopies are of different dimensions over the store bay, and over the building entrances; and

WHEREAS, The proposed lighting would be metal halide concealed fixtures; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has not developed a master plan for signage on the canopies; and

WHEREAS, No effort to restore the first floor façade to a historically contextual state was presented; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the bulkhead; and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to replace the storefronts, encourages the applicant to prepare detailed renderings, and urges the applicant to incorporate restoration of the first floor masonry contextual to the historic nature of the building at 35 East 21st Street; and be it further 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five is urging the applicant to establish a signage master plan.

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909Broadway, application for relocation of metal shutters on rear of the building.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, May 08, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 35 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 909 Broadway is a three story retail building located between East 20th and 21st Streets in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, MADURA USA, a retail establishment has submitted an application to remove metal shutters from the second floor rear façade, and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to relocate second story shutters to replace damaged shutters on the third floor on the rear facade; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recommended approval of an application from the Applicant in February 2014 to renovate the front façade of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The relocation of the shutters is an additional element of the Renovation; and

WHEREAS, The relocated shutters will replace shutters on the Building that are in poor condition; and

WHEREAS, The relocation of the shutters will not result in any new shutters being placed on the Building; and

WHEREAS, The relocation of the shutters is appropriate for the Building and the District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Application to relocate metal shutters from the second floor to the third floor on the rear of the building at 909 Broadway. 

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April 2014

43 West 23rd Street, for replacement of lobby entrance Doors.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 36 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 43 West 23rd Street is a commercial building located between Fifth and Sixth Avenue in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by architect Henry J. Hardenberg and built in 1893-94 is known as the Castro Building; and 

WHEREAS, R. H. Consultants & Associates Inc., has applied for the replacement of a non-historic storefront that has double doors and replace it with a wooden revolving door to match the wood, brass, and glass details of the current doors; and  

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for the replacement of existing glass and metal storefront section with a metal bulkhead approximately 18' high to match the existing and a to install a wood and glass swing door with side light to be ADA compliant; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is proposing to move an existing standpipe directly west that would otherwise interfere with a full 90 degree swing of the door; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed replacement of the lobby entrance does not alter any of the building's external original fabric or colors; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for the replacement of the lobby entrance at 43 West 23rd Street. 

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45 West 53rd Street, American Folk Art Museum, proposed designation.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 27 in favor, 7 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, The building that housed the American Folk Art Museum, located at 45 West 53rd Street is slated for imminent demolition; and

WHEREAS, The façade of the 85-foot tall building is clad in sixty-three textured panels of Tombasil, a lustrous and weatherable alloy of copper and white bronze, and the material, which had never previously been used architecturally, faceted in three large planes that evoke the palm of a human hand and catch the light at different angles, was designed by Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects in collaboration with sculptor Darcy Miro; and

WHEREAS, The building's architects, Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects, won numerous awards for the building—among others, an American Institute of Architects National Honor Award (in 2003), the World Architecture Awards for Best Building in the World, Best Public/Cultural Building in the World, and Best North American Building, as well as the New York City American Institute of Architects Design Award (all in 2003); and the Municipal Art Society New York City Masterwork Award (in 2001); and

WHEREAS, The facade was designed in context with the Midtown Special Sub-district, which has the following purposes, among others: to preserve the historic architectural character of development along certain streets and avenues and the pedestrian orientation of ground floor uses, and thus safeguard the qualities that makes Midtown vital; and to continue the historic pattern of relatively low building bulk in mid-block locations compared to avenue frontages; and

WHEREAS, The American Folk Art Museum sold its Midtown building to its neighbor MoMA in May 2011 and relocated to the Upper West Side; and

WHEREAS, In April 2013, MoMA announced plans to demolish the building to make way for MoMA's expansion plans; and 

WHEREAS, As a result of massive outpouring of media attention and the objections from preservationists, design critics, and renowned architects, urban planners, academics, neighbors, and other city advocates, by the following month, MoMA announced that it would reassess its decision to raze the building; and

WHEREAS, On January 9, 2014, MoMA announced its final decision to raze the building; and 

WHEREAS, This particular block has seen a very complex transfer of development rights, between and among the University Club, St Thomas Church and a receiving site; and

WHEREAS, The receiving site for these air rights is 53W53ST, which is adjacent to the Folk Art Museum and may be impacted by the demolition of 45W53ST and the proposed new building; and

WHEREAS, MoMA Building History includes:

1951 | Grace Rainey Rogers Annex, designed by Philip Johnson, opens at 21 West 53 Street, adjacent to the original 1939 building (razed in 1979 to make room for the new west wing).

1953 | The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden, designed by Philip Johnson, is dedicated. Acquisition of building at 27 West 53 Street.

1964 | Opening of east wing and garden wing and enlarged sculpture garden. Project designed by Philip Johnson.

1980 | Construction begins on the west wing and Museum Tower, built over parcel formerly occupied by 21-35 West 53 Street.

1984 | New west wing, designed by Cesar Pelli & Associates, and renovated and improved Museum facilities open. West wing doubles exhibition space and adds a new film theater and two floors of offices. Other improvements include a four-story, glass-enclosed garden hall overlooking the sculpture garden and housing Museum circulation; two new restaurants in the expanded garden wing; and a completely refurbished sculpture garden.

1996 | Acquisition of the Dorset Hotel at 30 West 54 Street and two adjacent townhouses at 42 West 54 Street and 41 West 53 Street for future expansion.

1997 | Yoshio Taniguchi selected as architect for the new Museum of Modern Art. Architects chosen by MoMA for the competition. Bernard Tschumi, Herzog & de Meuron Architekten, Steven Holl, Rem Koolhaas, Toyo Ito, Rafael Vinoly, Dominique Perrault, and the team of Tod Williams and Billie Tsien.

2001 | Construction on new Museum of Modern Art begins.
MoMA opens The MoMA Design Store, Soho, at 81 Spring Street.

2002 | The Museum opens MoMA QNS, its temporary new home in Long Island City. Designed by Cooper, Robertson & Partners of New York. Lobby and roofscape designed in collaboration with Michael Maltzan Architecture of Los Angeles.

2004 | The new Museum of Modern Art opens in Manhattan. MoMA's midtown location underwent extensive renovations in the early 2000s, closing on May 21, 2002 and reopening to the public in a building redesigned by the Japanese architect Yoshio Taniguchi along with Kohn Pedersen Fox, on November 20, 2004. The project nearly doubled the space for MoMA's exhibitions and programs and features 630,000 square feet  of new and redesigned space. The Peggy and David Rockefeller Building on the western portion of the site houses the main exhibition galleries, and The Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman Education and Research Building on the eastern portion provides over five times more space for classrooms, auditoriums, and teacher training workshops, and the museum's expanded Library and Archives. These two buildings frame the enlarged Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden; and

WHEREAS, The Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) has established a criteria that buildings less than 30 years old are not eligible to be considered for preservation; and

WHEREAS, On occasions such as this, a building less than 30 years old when threatened, draws considerable attention from the architectural/design and local community for its preservation; and 

WHEREAS, A building less than 30 years old that has not stood the test of time must meet the highest criteria for preservation; and 

WHEREAS, A contemporary building worthy of preservation should meet at least five out of the six criteria below:

1- When constructed, the building, structure or facility must have been recognized by multiple, prestigious design awards. The awards must be bestowed by a national or international-based organizations, not merely local or regionally based. The Folk Art Building meets this criteria. 

2- The architect of the building should hold a place of national or international distinction for over 15 years. Todd William and Billie Tsein meet this criteria.

3- Building must not have suffered from any design or functional flaw in the intervening years. The Folk Art Building meets this criteria. 

4- Innovative materials – rarely or never used architectural material or system. The Folk Art Building meets this criteria. 

5- Innovated design – the design should have been considered innovative and contextually appropriate.  The Folk Art Building meets this criteria.

6- The builder, developer, or institutional benefactor of the building must be a prominent individual or firm, destined to hold a high place of esteem in their industry or profession.  The Folk Art Museum Building meets this criteria; and

WHEREAS, MoMA's Department of Architecture and Design was founded in 1932 as the first museum department in the world dedicated to the intersection of architecture and design; and 

WHEREAS, MoMA acknowledged Williams Billie Tsien Architects stature in the realm of architecture in 1997 by inviting them to compete for the previous renovation; and 

WHEREAS, It would be moral conflict for a museum to acknowledge the importance of an architect and then remove a site-specific example of their work; and 

WHEREAS, The original design of MoMA's proposed addition did not include the American Folk Art Museum site, so adding such a small percentage of area to the museum does not justify demolishing a building meeting the criteria listed above; and

WHEREAS, MoMA has shown precedent in all their previous renovations of preserving buildings meeting the criteria above: 11 West 53, 21 West 53, and the sculpture garden; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five would recommend that MoMA consider this and look at a larger MoMA campus renovation to preserve the American Folk Art Museum building as a solution to demolition, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five strongly objects to the demolition of the former American Folk Art Building façade and finds that the current Landmarks Law and city charter do not adequately address saving this worthy example of architecture and thought should be considered for exceptions or revised criteria, and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five urges the Mayor, NY City Council, the Landmark Preservation Commission to consider adopting criteria to preserve contemporary buildings of distinction, especially when public funds are involved, and be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five urges the Mayor, NY City Council, the Landmark Preservation Commission to consider the former American Folk Art Building façade be the first such designation to protect it from demolition. 

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160 Lexington Avenue (NW corner of 30th Street), application related to partitions behind upper floor windows and two Siamese connections.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 36 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 160 Lexington Avenue is a five-story brick and stone neo-classical institutional building designed by Harvey Wiley Corbett of the firm Bell & Corbett, which was constructed in 1908-1909 as the Pratt-New York Phoenix School of Design and designated as an individual landmark in 1977; and

WHEREAS, The applicant appeared before Community Board Five to present an application related to partitions installed 12 inches behind the upper floor windows and two Siamese connections required for the building's sprinkler system; and

WHEREAS, The applicant represented that the partitions were installed after having been approved by LPC Staff, but upon subsequent LPC Staff inspection, the applicant was advised that the LPC Staff had mistakenly approved these partitions, as their authority is limited to partitions located at least 18 inches behind windows, and that such partitions must be presented to the Commission; and

WHEREAS, The partitions, which are behind all of the upper floor windows, are constructed of sheetrock with visible metal studs; and

WHEREAS, No lighting will be directed at or behind such windows and no signage shall appear upon the window side of such partitions; and

WHEREAS, Due to the height of the windows, the partitions are not highly conspicuous when viewed from the street and do not detract from the historic fabric of the building; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has agreed to stipulate that such partitions would be removed upon a change in tenancy; and

WHEREAS, The partitions will be presented to the Commission as part of an application to legalize the installation of louvers at the 2nd floor and 7th floor (roof), a louvered door at cellar areaway, new lighting fixtures on the 1st floor and cellar levels, and an ADA intercom at the 1st floor, which work was approved by Community Board Five in February 2014, having been found to have minimal visual impact on the building and to be an overall improvement of its prior condition; and

WHEREAS, The two required Siamese connections, one of which is installed on the Lexington Avenue side of the building and the other of which is attached to a railing on the 30th Street side of the building, should have been included in the February 2014 application; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds the overall work to be appropriate to the landmark; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application related to partitions behind upper floor windows and two Siamese connections at 160 Lexington Avenue. 

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240 Central Park South and 7th Avenue, application for proposed window replacement.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 36 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 240 Central Park South is a residential building built in 1939 to the design of Mayer & Whittlesey and represents the transitional style between 1930s Art Deco and Post-World War II Modernist Style;

WHEREAS, 240 Central Park South was designated as a landmark on April 30th, 2002; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has proposed to modify an existing window replacement master plan, previously approved by LPC by installing a cooling tower on the 29th floor and very small condensation misters recessed into the facades which will eliminate the need for window air conditioner units or exhaust louvers; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has represented that this adjustment to the widow master plan will ultimately restore the façade to its original historic state, free of unsightly window air conditioners as well as subsequently modified window panes; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five would have preferred that 240 Central Park South would have constructed a mockup of the cooling tower, but understand that LPC staff had agreed to waive the mockup requirement for this project; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed modification to the existing window replacement master plan at 240 Central Park South. 

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1150 Broadway, Application for storefront renovation.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of : 36 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained,.

WHEREAS, 1150 Broadway is a commercial building located on the Northeast corner of Broadway and West 27th Street within the heart of the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, The Smith Restaurant, seeks to renovate the building's four non-historic storefront bays along Broadway and the six easternmost non-historic storefront bays along West 27th Street following the configuration of the building's second story windows; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant proposes to install black painted steel and glass fixed storefronts along West 27th Street and black painted steel and glass storefronts with sliding steel and glass doors along Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant seeks to apply a non-historic semi-opaque film on the interior glass of all of the renovated storefront bays to partially obscure diners from passersby; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant seeks to install non-historic retractable black canvas awnings above each renovated storefront approximately 8 feet high and extending five feet from the building's façade; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant proposes the addition of moderate signage without the use of lights on some storefront windows and proposed awnings; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed use of a non-historic glass treatment, proposed non-historic sliding glass doors, and the vast number of proposed awnings do not harmoniously relate to the Madison Square North Historic District, and are consequently unsuitable; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to renovate four storefronts on the Broadway façade and six storefronts on the West 27th Street façade of 1150 Broadway unless the non-historic film proposed to coat the glass, the sliding glass and steel doors along the four Broadway storefronts, and the awnings are removed from the plan. 

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1619 Broadway - Application for installation of a new storefront, signage band, canopy and entry pieces and a proposed revision of the building wall and roof signage in LED.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 10, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 34 in favor, 2 opposed, 1 abstained.

WHEREAS, 1619 Broadway ("Brill Building") is an eleven story brick and terra cotta Art Deco building constructed in 1930-31 by Abraham Lefcourt, one of New York's most prolific developers in the 1920's and thereafter sold to the Brill brothers; and  

WHEREAS, The creative culture of the music companies in the Brill Building came to define the influential "Brill Building Sound" and the style of popular music songwriting and recording that was created by its writers and producers; and

WHEREAS, 1619 Broadway was designated a landmark by LPC in 2010 due to the highly decorated Art Deco style of the Brill Building, the influential and popular music associated with the Brill Building and Abraham Lefcourt being the developer of the Brill Building; and

WHEREAS, 1619 Broadway Realty LLC ("Applicant") has applied to replace the existing non-historic storefront across the entire Brill Building base with a new storefront; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to install new canopy and entry pieces on the Brill Building; and  

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to install a new signage band on the Brill Building; and  

WHEREAS, The Applicant has proposed the revision of building wall and roof signage in LED on the Brill Building; and

WHEREAS, The new LED wall signage has a smaller footprint thereby enabling additional parts of the Brill Building to be visible; and    

WHEREAS, The historic Brill Building entry façade on Broadway will remain intact; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposal accentuates the Brill Building's location at the corner of Broadway and 49th Street; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposal is an appropriate improvement for the Brill Building and is harmonious with the Times Square district; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the 1619 Broadway application for installation of a new storefront, signage band, canopy and entry pieces and a proposed revision of the building wall and roof signage in LED. 

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March 2014

20 West 40th Street, application seeking a letter of support from LPC to DCP, pursuant to ZR 74-711.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of : 32 in favor, 5 opposed, 1 abstained, and 1 present not entitled to vote.

WHEREAS, An application had been submitted to the Landmarks Preservation Commission application seeking a letter of support from LPC to DCP, pursuant to ZR 74-711 to construct a new building at 20 West 40th Street; and

WHEREAS, Pursuant to Section 74-711 of the Zoning Resolution, any new building at this site is contingent upon a report from the Landmarks Preservation Commission stating that the new building relates harmoniously with the landmark Knox Building and other landmarked buildings in the immediate vicinity; and

WHEREAS, The Knox Building at 452 Fifth Avenue is a 10-story Beaux Arts style office building with ground level retail space, commissioned by Colonel Edward M. Knox for The Knox Hat Company, constructed in 1901-02 to the designs of the notable architect John H. Duncan in 1902;

WHEREAS, On September 23, 1980, the Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the Knox Building at 452 Fifth Avenue as an individual landmark, and subsequently this was annexed to the 400'-0" tall, 29-story Modern style Republic National Bank building at 442-450 Fifth Avenue, which was constructed in 1981-84 to the designs of Eli Attia Architects; and

WHEREAS, On November 9, 2006, Community Board Five recommended the approval of an application by a previous owner which requested that the Landmarks Preservation Commission issue a letter of support to the City Planning Commission relating to an application for a Modification of Use and Bulk pursuant to Section 74-711 of the Zoning Resolution, and for permission to:

1.      Transfer of 17,264 square feet of available floor area from the M1-6 Zoning District to the C5-3 Zoning District,

2.      Modify the setback requirements,

3.      Modify the requirement to provide less than the amount of pedestrian circulation space required for lots greater than 20,000 square feet, and

4.      Modify the requirement to permit the building along West 40th Street to provide less than the required minimum street wall (within 10 feet of the street line) equal to 80% of the frontage up to a height of 85 feet; and

WHEREAS, On November 9, 2006, Community Board Five recommended the approval of an application seeking permission to execute preservation, restoration and continuing maintenance plan for the Knox Building, pursuant to Section 74-711 of the Zoning Resolution, which should include:

1.      Restoration of the ground floor storefronts, a canopy over the Fifth Avenue entrance, the stone water table at the base of building, and ornamental railings at the 7th Floor,

2.      Replacement of windows resembling the original and the original sign band; and

WHEREAS, such improvements have been successfully executed under the supervision of the LPC, and

WHEREAS, On April 17, 2007, the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved the previous owner's applications for seeking Modification of Use and Bulk and the Certificate of Appropriateness of the proposed preservation, restoration and continuing maintenance plan for the Knox Building; and

WHEREAS, On January 17, 2008, Community Board Five recommended the approval of ULURP Application C 080042 ZSM, to grant a Special Permit pursuant to 74-711 of the Zoning Resolution; and

WHEREAS, ULURP Application C 080042 ZSM indicated that the proposed 32-story building will be 357 feet tall, 186,940 square foot, and will house a hotel with 150 rooms, a 52 unit residential condominium and a parking garage with 30 spaces; and

WHEREAS, ULURP Application C080042ZSM requested bulk modifications to make the building more harmonious with the neighborhood, and

WHEREAS, On March 26, 2008, a Special Permit was granted to the previous owner by the City Planning Commission to facilitate the construction of a 357 foot high, 32-story, 186,940 square foot building, with modifications to height and setback, split lot provisions, and pedestrian circulation space; and

WHEREAS, In June 2010, the project site changed ownership, and

WHEREAS, On November 10, 2011, Community Board Five approved the renewal of the Special Permit granted by the City Planning Commission; and

WHEREAS, The current owner has commissioned for the renowned London-based architect Sir David Alan Chipperfield to design an new building at 20 West 40th Street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building would have a tripartite articulation, with a five-story base, a tower topped by a double-height crown; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building has been designed with a masonry façade which would be executed in a pale gray or creamy white colored composite stone, in a polished finish for the front facades and in a textured finish for the side facades, and this custom made composite masonry would be crafted in a North American factory; and

WHEREAS, The proposed building's northern and southern façade walls would feature deeper and wider window surrounds, the eastern and western façade walls would feature more shallow and narrower window surrounds; and

WHEREAS, Per the Special Permit granted by the City Planning Commission, the proposed building would be 357 feet in height and would be flush with the street wall, and this will continue the "saw tooth pattern" of the existing buildings on West 40th Street; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five has been assured that continuing maintenance program has been established that will result in preservation of the Knox Building at 452 Fifth Avenue; and

WHEREAS, Although CB5 would prefer that any new building at 20 West 40th Street feature a masonry façade that incorporate more ornate architectural elements similar to those of the Knox building, as well as American Radiator Building and the Bryant Park Studios, CB5 believes that the proposed building's sophisticated level of design does rise to the high caliber of its neighbors and would relate harmoniously with these landmarks; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application submitted to the Landmarks Preservation Commission requesting a letter of support pursuant to ZR 74-711 for a new building at 20 West 40th Street. 

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43 East 20th Street, Application for restoration of building façade, windows, and roof in conjunction with an Application for a 74-711 Zoning Change of Use.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of : 38 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstaining.

WHEREAS, 43 East 20th Street is an eight story neo-Renaissance style mixed commercial and residential use building located on East 20th Street between Broadway and Park Avenues within the Ladies Mile Historic District, and was commissioned and constructed by Caroline Brimley in 1899-1901 to the design of architect Ervin G. Gollner; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recognizes and appreciates the Applicant's 2012-2013 efforts to restore the building's original limestone façade to its historic condition; and

WHEREAS, Applicant now proposes to replace existing non-historic aluminum and wood windows on the 3rd, 4th, and 8th floors with wood double-hung windows to match originals, including brick molding and an arch at the 8th floor, and repair the original 2nd floor windows; and

WHEREAS, Applicant proposes to restore a missing roof cornice in fiberglass to match the existing historic cornice, and light the new cornice with subtle uplights at the top of the 6th floor; and

WHEREAS, Applicant proposes to replace a two-story existing painted wall sign with a modern advertisement on the top of the building's West façade; and

WHEREAS, This Application is in conjunction with an Application for a 74-711 Zoning Change of Use from part commercial and part residential to all residential, excepting the ground floor, which currently operates as a restaurant; and

WHEREAS, Applicant will provide the Landmarks Preservation Commission with a formal report outlining a Plan that will be filed as a Deed Restriction providing a program for the continuing maintenance and preservation of the historic elements of the building, and

WHEREAS, Applicant will obtain a Certificate of Appropriateness from the Landmarks Preservation Commission stating that the proposed modifications to the building are harmonious with the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, Applicant's proposed restoration and/or replacement of a two-story painted advertisement on the building's West façade does not harmoniously relate to the Ladies Mile Historic District, and is therefore unsuitable; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to restore the facade, windows, and roof of 43 East 20th Street unless the restoration and/or replacement of the two-story painted brick sign on the building's West façade is not included in the plan. 

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51-53 West 19th Street Application to demolish and replace two existing buildings in the Ladies Mile Historic District.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 51-53 West 19th Street are two buildings located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, 51 West 19th Street is a 5-story dwelling constructed in 1854 and converted to commercial use in the 1895, with the current early 20th Century commercial style façade dating to 1924; and 

WHEREAS, 53 West 19th Street is a 5-story dwelling constructed in 1854 and converted to commercial use in the 1890's, with the current early 20th Century commercial style façade dating to 1924; and 

WHEREAS, Such buildings vividly "tell the story" of the district, due to their size, scale, configuration, and proximity to much larger scale loft buildings thus demonstrating the evolution of the neighborhood from its residential roots and its transformation into a major commercial hub; and

WHEREAS, It would be unprecedented to demolish two historic and "contributing" buildings in a designated landmark district; and

WHEREAS, It is reasonable to anticipate that an approval to demolish these particular buildings would open a floodgate of similar requests, in turn defeating the very purpose of designating a historic district; and

WHEREAS, Numerous members of the public were present to voice their support to protect the landmarked buildings and oppose their demolition; and

WHEREAS, There were discrepancies of fact between the applicant's testimony, the public's testimony and the public record that reflect poorly on the credibility of the application; therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to demolish 51-53 West 19th Street; and be it further

RESOLVED, Having voted to deny demolition of the subject buildings, Community Board Five elects not to evaluate the merits of, or comment on, the proposed, 14-story residential tower with a commercial base. 

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105 Fifth Avenue and 18th Street (formerly Barnes & Noble Bookstore), located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, application for restoration.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 105 Fifth Avenue is located in the Ladies Historic Mile and was designated a Landmark on May 2, 1989; and

WHEREAS, The application is to restore the storefronts, windows, and signage on both 18th Street and Fifth Avenue back to their original design;

WHEREAS, The 18th Street façade restoration will remove non-historic infill from one bay and replace it with infill to mimic the existing two historic bays, namely by removing a door and creating a matching aluminum frame with a black infill panel storefront, transom window and ornamental cast iron grille; and

WHEREAS, The Fifth Avenue restoration will remove non-historic material and:

a)      Restore the Fifth Avenue corner storefront creating a matching aluminum frame with black infill panel storefront and transom window and ornamental cast iron grille for the infill; and

b)      Restore the center storefront by removing the glass revolving doors and replacing them with glass entry doors; and

c)      Restore the entrance way so that it is flanked on each side; and

d)     Move the existing flagpole to its original location at the center of the storefront; and

e)      Existing signage on the corner of 18th Street and Fifth Avenue will remain with new tenant's name replacing old tenant's, and

WHEREAS, The application is considered restorative in nature and will enhance the storefronts for retail tenants and make a positive contribution to the Ladies Mile Historic District; therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for the restoration of the storefront at 105 Fifth Avenue. 

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130 5th Avenue, Application for replacement of lobby entrance Doors.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 130 5th Avenue is a commercial building located between West 18th Street and West 19th Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, ROC- Fifth Ave Associates LLC has applied for the replacement of a non-historic storefront that has revolving doors and a prominent  transom with a modern style glass storefront that has swing doors and no transom; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for the replacement of existing address signage on a transom with materially larger address signage on storefront glass; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied for a modern style renovation of an existing lobby including the rearrangement of partitions, ceiling, flooring, finishes and the replacement of existing AC unit and ductwork, all of which have been determined not to require Community Board Five approval; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed replacement of the lobby entrance does not alter any of the Building's external original fabrics or colors; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed replacement of a non-historic storefront with a modern, herculite, frameless style glass storefront without a transom is not appropriate for the Building or harmonious with the District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends a denial of the application for the replacement of the lobby entrance at 130 5th Avenue.

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488 Madison Avenue Application For Storefront Renovations.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 488 Madison Avenue is an Individual Landmark located on the west side of Madison Avenue, between 51st and 52nd Street; and

WHEREAS, The 21-story office building was constructed in 1948-50 and designed by the architectural firm of  Emery Roth & Sons; and 

WHEREAS, This building is commonly known as the Look Building, named after its primary tenant, the former magazine of the same name; and

WHEREAS,  The Look Building marks the time that European Modernism first began to transform mid-20th century office buildings in Manhattan; and

WHEREAS, The applicant seeks to make alterations to building's storefront, signage, interior and windows; including:

a)      Replacing storefront in-fill with materials and colors more in keeping with the original design,

b)      Re-establishing to the extent possible the original front-door canopy including the street numbers as they were originally designed,

c)      Providing a master plan for the uniform placement of signage,

d)     Having the storefront stainless steel mullions correspond to the curtain wall aluminum mullions above; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to make alterations to the landmark site located at 488 Madison Avenue. 

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1230 Avenue of the Americas (between 48th and 49th Streets) APPLICATION to replace storefront infill.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 1230 Avenue of the Americas, also known as the Simon & Schuster Building (originally U.S. Rubber Company Building and Addition), an individual landmark within Rockefeller Center, is an office tower designed by the Associated Architects and built in 1939 with an addition designed by Wallace Harrison and Max Abramowitz and built in 1954-55; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to modify and replace the storefront infill at two bays on West 48th Street; and

WHEREAS, At the Westerly bay the applicant proposed to:

  • Remove non-historic masonry cladding and replace it with new granite baseto match the historic condition, and
  • Remove non-historic awning, and
  • Install a new double bronze and glass doors, transom and two flanking windows with bronze frames to match existing, and
  • install translucent film inserts and partitions on the inside of the storefront glass which would provide differing levels of opacity at each window and which would be completely removable and reversible, and

WHEREAS, At the Easterly bay the applicant proposes:

  • no change to the bronze frame and like the westerly bay,
  • install translucent film inserts and partitions on the inside of the storefront glass which would provide differing levels of opacity at each window and which would be completely removable and reversible, and
  • on the interior install a light cove and interior access doors to accommodate interior programming; and

WHEREAS, The application is a modest proposal for largely restorative and reversible work similar to and harmonious with the existing storefronts, signage, and windows in Rockefeller Center; and

WHEREAS, Similarly appropriate store-front modifications have been approved repeatedly by both Community Board Five and the LPC, therefore be it,

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to modify and replace storefront infill at 1230 Avenue of the Americas. 

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Request for Landmark Designation for the Picasso Curtain in Its Location at 99 East 52nd Street.

At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 13, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining; 1 present not entitled to vote:

WHEREAS, The Four Seasons Restaurant, located at 99 East 52nd Street, was created by Mies van der Rohe (building) and Philip Johnson (restaurant) in 1959 and designated as an interior landmark in 1989; and

WHEREAS, One critical element of the restaurant is a portion of a painted curtain created by Pablo Picasso for Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes production of "Le Tricorne" in 1919; and

WHEREAS, The curtain is 19 feet high and 20 feet wide and is the largest painting extant by Picasso with the exception of "Guernica," which is located in Madrid; and

WHEREAS, The curtain is, in and of itself, an important work from Picasso's White Period and is unique in terms of its purpose, materials and size and, while valued monetarily for insurance purposes, is critically considered to be priceless; and

WHEREAS, The Picasso Curtain has hung on a travertine wall in the corridor between the Grill Room and the Pool Room of The Four Seasons from the first day of the restaurant's opening in 1959; and

WHEREAS, The curtain is considered an integral part of the design and concept of the restaurant, which was created to be a complete and full artistic experience, including all furnishings, sculpture, art, decoration, tableware, and additional design elements; and

WHEREAS, The importance of the curtain to the concept and execution of the restaurant was such that the section of wall on which it hangs was never clad in travertine by Mr. Johnson; its finish being deemed unnecessary as the curtain was intended to always hang in this location; and

WHEREAS, At the time of the interior landmark designation of The Four Seasons in 1989 it was deemed that the curtain not be included due to both a narrow reading of landmark criteria which saw it as a "removable element" and in recognition of the need to do everything possible to ensure that the restaurant interior gain landmark protection due to the danger of it being dismantled; and

WHEREAS, Legislation following the interior landmark ruling both upheld the designation and made it clear that additional elements, which would clearly have included the Picasso Curtain, would have also been designated  if they had been included in the request; and

WHEREAS, The curtain has been regularly recognized as important to the overall design concept of the restaurant and has remained in its original location for 55 years; and

WHEREAS, Its current situation without designation leaves its status as culturally and artistically important and as an essential element of The Four Seasons to the subjective vicissitudes of those in control of the building at any given time; and

WHEREAS, Other elements considered removable, such as lighting fixtures and art, have appeared in many interior landmark designations, such as at The Plaza hotel, further indicating that a designation of curtain is appropriate and within Landmarks Preservation Commission jurisdiction; and

WHEREAS, Beyond the consideration of the Picasso Curtain as an integral element of the landmarked interior and its artistic and cultural significance, the curtain is in an extremely fragile and dangerous state and may not survive a removal from its location; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five submits a Request for Designation of the Picasso Curtain in its exact location at 99 East 52nd Street as an Interior Landmark and as an addendum to the interior landmark designation of The Four Seasons restaurant. 

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January 2014

24 West 24th Street (Bet. 5th and 6th Avenues), application for installation of an exterior ADA Ramp and related alterations.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, January 16, 2014, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 25 in favor; 2 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 24 West 24th Street is a thru-block commercial neo-Renaissance style building with entrances on West 23rd and 24th Streets, designed by Henry J. Hardenbergh for William C. Schermerhorn a Chairman of trustees at Columbia University, located between Avenue of the Americas and 5th Avenue in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building was constructed in 1893-94 with an addition on West 24th Street constructed in 1914-15; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, Ladies Mile, LLC has applied for the installation of an exterior ADA ramp on the West 24th Street entrance to make it a primary entrance for the north side of the Building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to add a new entry way on the site to accommodate the new exterior ADA ramp, and to remove existing steps to accommodate the exterior ADA ramp; and

WHEREAS, the applicant is proposing to add a handrail at the existing stairs, and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five has concerns about the appropriateness, for this site and the district, of the new external ADA ramp and related alterations when combined with additional unspecified changes planned by the Applicant; and

WHEREAS, In accordance with said concerns the Applicant has agreed to obtain Community Board Five approval for any additional changes to the site as a condition for approval of the new ADA ramp and related alterations; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends an approval of the new ADA ramp for 24 West 24th Street with the condition that any additional changes to this site would need CB5 approval.

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60 MADISON AVENUE (BTWN EAST 26TH AND EAST 27TH STREETS), APPLICATION FOR MODIFICATION OF BUILDING ENTRANCE.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, January 16, 2014, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 26 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining; 1 present not entitled to vote:

WHEREAS, 60 Madison Avenue is a 12 story L-shaped Beaux Arts style office building, located between East 26th Street and East 27th Street, within the Madison Square North Historic District, and was commissioned and constructed by the Neptune Realty Company in 1909-10, to the design of the renowned architectural firm, Maynicke & Franke; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant proposes to replace the existing entrance on Madison Avenue with a stainless steel storefront and a frameless glass door in a tripartite design with stainless steel signage behind the glass and with a new stainless steel and patterned glass canopy extending four feet from the building's façade; and

WHEREAS, The existing building entrance on Madison Avenue in the southernmost storefront bay, consisting of a non-historic stucco portal surrounded by glass, was installed in the late 1970s or early 1980s, prior to the designation of the Madison Square North Historic District in 2001; and

WHEREAS, Over time, there has been some modifications at the street level, most notably the relocation of the main entrance from East 26th Street to Madison Avenue; however, the building's graceful masonry façade, constructed in a blend of limestone, brick and terra-cotta, has remained remarkably intact; and

WHEREAS, The proposed design supports details of the historical elements of the building, calling for a tripartite layout of the doors and transom above, referencing the transom in the existing storefront, as well as the tripartite spandrel panel motif currently displayed in the storefront and the adjacent bays; and

WHEREAS, The proposed stainless steel and patterned glass canopy is strikingly modern, not historically contextual with, and therefore unsuitable for, the building and the Beaux Arts style employed at the time of its construction; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to modify the building entrance at 60 Madison Avenue because the proposed stainless steel and patterned glass canopy is inappropriate.

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APPLICATION TO RENOVATE THE 5TH AVENUE ENTRANCE OF THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING (350 FIFTH AVENUE b/t 33rd and 34th Sts.)

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, January 16, 2014, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 27 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Empire State Building is both a New York City and U.S. National Historic Landmark located at 350 Fifth Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The Empire State Building was built in 1931 was designed by architect William F. Lamb; and

WHEREAS, The Empire State Building was the tallest building in the world until the completion of the twin towers at the World Trade Center in 1973; and

WHEREAS, The Empire State Building seeks to meet requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act by providing handicapped accessible entry; and

WHEREAS, The applicant wants to provide such entry by renovating the 5th Avenue entry door, which currently serves as the main entrance to the Empire State Building and 86th floor observation deck; and

WHEREAS, The existing 5th Avenue entry consists of 2 existing revolving doors and 2 non-historic pairs of swing doors; and

WHEREAS, The applicant seeks to restore exterior swing doors to historical condition with the following objectives:

       Provide handicapped accessible entry at the building's main entrance

       Increase ease of handicapped access at front entry with automatic doors

       Provide doors with automatic operation to mitigate stack effect at main entrance

       Maintain required egress width

       Repair damaged stone flooring; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to

- replace non-historic swing doors with automatic curved sliding doors,

- add a historically contextual frieze above the door

- install a free standing post with opening mechanism in proximity of the door

WHEREAS, The renovations are deemed to be a sensitive solution to restoring original exterior doors while also solving longstanding issues of meeting ADA compliance for public buildings; and

WHEREAS, Renovations to the entryway will provide a more appropriate vestibule for inclement weather conditions; and

WHEREAS, The proposed free-standing post used to activate automatic doors is necessary in order to meet minimum guidelines of the Americans with Disabilities Act; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to renovate the 5th Avenue entrance of the Empire State Building at 350 Fifth Avenue.

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27 West 20th Street, application for replacement of windows.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, January 16, 2014, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 14 in favor; 13 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 27 West 20th Street, aka the Brogan Building, is a store and loft neo-Renaissance building designed by architectural firm Neville & Bagge for Charles Brogan and constructed in 1907-08 and

WHEREAS, The applicant, Historical Windows, a tenant of the building, is proposing to replace all the front façade windows, and

WHEREAS, The existing windows are as follows:

- The second story has tripartite wood-framed windows with transoms; the two westernmost windows have pivoting panes, and the others are Chicago-style, with central stationary panes flanked by one-over-one windows.

- The third through the twelfth stories are single-pane wood-framed windows with a pivoting mechanism, grouped in threes.

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing to replace the wood frames with aluminum frames painted with a bronze colored paint and replace the pivoting windows with tilt windows, and

WHEREAS, Pivoting windows are a very important feature of the building fenestration and a disappearing type of window mechanism in the Ladies Mile Historic District, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to replace pivoting windows with tilt windows at 27 West 20th Street.

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December 2013

The University Club, 1 West 54th Street, application for rooftop addition.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The University Club, located at the northwest corner of West 54th Street and Fifth Avenue, designed by architects McKim, Mead & White, constructed in 1897-99, designated as an individual landmark in 1967, resembles a 16th Century Italian Renaissance palazzo, and according to the designation report is "one of the handsomest buildings on Fifth Avenue"; and

WHEREAS, The University Club has submitted an application which requests permission to modify an existing rooftop addition, a structure that has been in place since the 1920's, which houses squash courts; and

WHEREAS, As these currently exist, the doubles squash courts, which are located near the Fifth Avenue side of the building, are not tall enough for international regulation play, and in order for the club to continue to host sanctioned tournaments, the applicant has proposed to raise the roof of this structure by 6'-0"; and

WHEREAS, A mock-up of the proposed modification has been installed on site, and this does indicate there would be limited visibility of the increased rooftop structure height, from the east side of Fifth Avenue, and from points south; and

WHEREAS, In order to blend into the building, and its surrounding neighbors, the existing rooftop structure is has a beige stucco façade, and the proposed extension would have the same finish; and

WHEREAS, The proposed 6'-0" increase in rooftop height would sit below the lot line windows of the Peninsula Hotel which is adjacent to the north; and

WHEREAS, The applicant appeared in front of CB5 in 2007, to propose a minimally visible rooftop addition to enlarge the squash courts and CB5 voted unanimously to approve the application, and

WHEREAS, The proposed modification would be minimally visible but would not cause a visual distraction that would negatively impact either this landmark building or any of its neighboring buildings, and would help to ensure that The University Club remains a world class destination for sanctioned squash tournaments; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That Community Board Five recommends approval of the application seeking permission to modify the existing rooftop addition at 1 West 54th Street and 5th Avenue.

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30 Rockefeller Plaza , Application to modify portions of the designated lobby and mezzanine.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 30 Rockefeller Plaza is an Art Deco style skyscraper lobby, designed by the Associated Architects and built in 1931-33 as part of an Art Deco style office, commercial and entertainment complex, which comprises the Rockefeller Center Individual Landmark, and

WHEREAS, The applicant wants to modify portions of the designated lobby and mezzanine, that currently serves as the lobby entrance for NBC studios, as follows

-       Removal of non-historic desk

-       Construction of a new greeter desk in its historic location in 1935 (material: Absolute Granite – high honed finish)

-       Installation of Art Deco inspired bronze finish suspended light fixture above the proposed greeter desk

-       Construction of a new staircase linking ground floor to mezzanine level in its historic location in 1935

-       Removal of non-historic pocket doors and installation of new bronze finish pocket doors to match existing

-       Alterations to north passage storefront to convert a one-door entrance to a two-door entrance with matching bronze finish and hardware

-       Relocation of a fire hose and one additional mechanical door at mezzanine level using matching stone (Crema marfil marble) and matching bronze door

WHEREAS, The purpose of the modifications is to allow for better flow of visitors touring the NBC studios, and

WHEREAS, The proposed applications are not altering the historic fabric of the building, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to alter interior lobby at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, bet. 49th and 50th Streets.

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1162 Broadway (b/t 27-28th Streets), Application to Demolish a Non-historic Building and Build a New Hotel

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 1162 Broadway, is located in the Madison Square North Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The existing non-descript, two-story, 26 foot wide structure, was built in 1940's replacing an earlier 4 story building and 

WHEREAS, The existing building is deemed "non-contributing" to the architecture and historic character of the district, and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to replace the existing structure with a 15-story hotel, and

WHEREAS, Hotels were prominent in the district, and

WHEREAS, Lots in the district are typically 25-30 feet wide and it is common to see contributing, historic, turn-of-the-century, high-rise buildings in the district, and

WHEREAS, The proposed hotel building has design features compatible and complementary with the district including;

-       Overall composition that a clearly defined base, shaft and top

-       A prominent cornice

-       A front façade of glazed brick with a granite base 

-       Unglazed brick sidewalls

-       Storefront and fenestration that echo similarly tall buildings in the district

-       The welcome addition of a rooftop water tower

WHEREAS, Current code would require that the upper stories of the new building be set back 15 feet, a configuration that is not appropriate to the district, and

WHEREAS, The applicant is applying for a variance from the Board of Standard and Appeals to permit a historically appropriate straight street wall, and 

WHEREAS, The applicant was able to prove, based on historic photos and prints, that entry canopies are historically appropriate for a hotels in the district, and 

WHEREAS, The proposed canopy was designed in a manner that is sensitive and appropriate to the district, therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board 5 recommends approval of the application to demolish a non-historic building and build a new hotel at 1162 Broadway, bet. 27th and 28th Streets.

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November 2013

909 Broadway - Application for storefront renovation, second floor window replacement, signage replacement, awning addition, rooftop deck & railing addition, elevator bulkhead addition and stair bulkhead addition

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, November 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 37 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 909 Broadway ("Site") is a three story retail building located between East 20th and 21st Streets in the Ladies' Mile Historic District ("District"); and

WHEREAS, MADURA USA ("Applicant"), a retail establishment, has applied to renovate the storefront of the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to alter the second floor windows of the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to add signage of the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to add third floor awnings on the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to build a rooftop deck & railing addition on the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has applied to build elevator and stair bulkhead additions on the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's proposed renovation will include the use of new color schemes and new material types for the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant's rooftop, railing and bulkhead additions are minimally visible and therefore acceptable for the Site and District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is proposing to replace the existing window on the second floor with a very large window, removing historic original fabric that is not appropriate for the Site or harmonious with the District; and

WHEREAS, There are various other concerns about the Applicant's renovation proposal for the Site that require further review including proposed colors, materials, signage and awnings; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has failed to provide Community Board Five a copy of its application   to the Landmarks Preservation Commission; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for storefront renovation, second floor window replacement, signage replacement, awning addition, rooftop deck & railing addition, elevator bulkhead addition and stair bulkhead addition at 909 Broadway, between 20th and 21st Streets.

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this matter.

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860 Broadway, Application to Construct a Rooftop Addition and Storefront / Façade Elements.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, November 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 860 Broadway is a six-story, late nineteenth-century commercial building located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building occupies a prominent location at the corner of Broadway and East 17th Street, directly across from the North Plaza of Union Square Park; and

WHEREAS, The building's location across from the open North Plaza makes it prominently visible from many surrounding view corridors in the park, along East 17th Street, and Union Square West; and

WHEREAS, The building is the southern gateway to the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The applicant has provided extensive historical documentation regarding the evolution of the façade from 1883 to present; and

WHEREAS, The application includes some historically appropriate storefront changes to the 17th Street façade to re-introduce doorways where they had once been; and

WHEREAS, The application includes an attempt to reintroduce a historic element at the first and second floors (the corner of 17th and Broadway); and

WHEREAS, The new corner element is a modern interpretation and not at all reminiscent of the historic original; and

WHEREAS, This same modern corner element is repeated in the proposed two-story rooftop addition; and

WHEREAS, The rooftop addition is highly visible, and of a contemporary design; and

WHEREAS, The owner's architect conceded that LPC staff did not insist on the customary rooftop mock-ups because the application would have significant visual impact; and

WHEREAS, Approval by LPC would be the wrong signal for owners of other buildings in the Historic District by becoming a precedent for other possible highly visible rooftop additions in the District ; and

WHEREAS, The physical bulk and visual impact of the modern design are not harmonious to or appropriate for the Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Highly visible and non-harmonious rooftop additions negatively alter the character of the Historic District; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for 860 Broadway, between 17th and 18th Streets, for a rooftop addition, and new storefront / façade elements.

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130 West 42nd Street, application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for alterations to the base at the 42nd Street façade including new storefront infill, entrance canopy and signage.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, November 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 130 West 42nd Street was constructed in 1916-1918 by Helme & Corbett architects, and is known as the Bush Tower; and

WHEREAS, The building is a 32 stories tower, and an influential prototype for set-back skyscrapers, combining historical neo-Gothic detailing with modern pronounced vertical emphasis built for the Bush Terminal Company: and

WHEREAS, In 1985 the building was designated by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission as an individual landmark; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, proposes to remove the Circa 2011 painted metal, glass and brass storefront with new white painted metal and glass storefront including glass doors with glass transom above as follows:

  • The aluminum clad east and west service doors will be replaced white painted metal and glass doors

•     The center bay of the tripartite division of openings will be replaced with arched metal panel recalling the original limestone arch with glass clerestory window above glass storefront to be used for retail, creating double height space on the interior

•     The existing double doors to the retail store will be replaced with new white painted metal & glass doors

•     The existing double doors to the lobby will be replaced with new white painted metal and glass with approx. 5' x 6' x 10" high rectangular white metal canopy above to mark the office entrance and address

•     Two retail blade signs, approximately 7'-9" high x 1'-6" deep, mounted to the stone façade flanking the retail arched window

WHEREAS, The design of the canopy is asymmetrical and distracts from the balance of the tripartite divisions and the white paint color is not harmonious with the original historic color palette and the blade signs are inappropriate and not in keeping with the historical character of the building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the Certificate of Appropriateness of the applications of 130 West 42nd St. and Avenue of the Americas for replacement of lobby entrance canopy, new storefront doors and signage.

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The Chanin Building, 122 East 42nd Street, application to replace windows and doors.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, November 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Chanin Building, 122 East 42nd Street, on the southwest corner of Lexington Avenue, is a 56 story Art Deco style building, commissioned and constructed in 1927-29 by the Chanin Construction Company, to the design of architects Sloan & Robertson was designated as an individual landmark on November 14, 1978; and

WHEREAS, The building's owners have submitted an application which requests permission to replace all windows, specifically to remove the Campbell double hung steel framed windows which have been in place since the building was first constructed; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has developed a master plan and is proposing to replace the existing windows with Traco TR9000 Series double hung aluminum framed energy efficient windows with clear Low-E glass, manufactured by Kilroy, the firm that currently owns the patents for the Campbell designs; and

WHEREAS, Existing doors which provide access to parapet balconies are proposed to be replaced with Traco NX-8900 Series aluminum framed outswing terrace doors; and

WHEREAS, Existing louver windows are proposed to be replaced with new louver windows that that include pane configurations to be consistent with the adjacent glass windows; and

WHEREAS, Jablonsky Building Conservation has performed an historical analysis of the paint on the existing window frames, and has determined that the earliest identified finish is a grayish olive color similar to Pittsburgh Paints' 409-7 "Grape Leaves", which is the proposed paint color for the new windows; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new windows would be installed within the existing masonry openings, and these would match the existing windows in sizes, enframements, glass pane configurations and mullions, however, there would be minor diminution from the existing glazing areas to the proposed glazing areas; and

WHEREAS, 74% of the proposed new windows are Window Type A, three-over-one paned, and these would retain 90% of the existing glazing area; and

WHEREAS, The diminution in glazing area in the remaining 26% of the proposed windows, Types B, C and D, would be 14.8%, 17.3% and 12.7% respectively; and

WHEREAS, The proposed scope of restoration and alteration work is extensive, and the proposed changes would be in the spirit of the design vocabulary and intent of the original building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of application to replace windows and doors at The Chanin Building, 122 East 42nd Street, bet. De Pew Place and Lexington Avenue.

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October 2013

120-122 Fifth Avenue, application for new signage and storefront elevations

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 118-120 Fifth Avenue, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, designed by John B. Snook Son, Architects, is an eleven-story neo-Renaissance style store and loft building, characteristic of the later development phase of the District., designated in 1989; and

WHEREAS, The GAP Store at 122 Fifth and West 17th Street has requested Approval for modifications for the store signage including three signs, one on 17th and the other two at 122 Fifth Avenue, as follows:.  

  • The shape and materials will change to create signage resembling other GAP signage in the district on Fifth Avenue
  • The signs will change from a square shape to rectangles 
  • The signs material swill be illuminated channel letters mounted on blue glass and lit from the back; and

WHEREAS, Both 120 Fifth  and 122 Fifth are requesting renovations and modifications to the storefronts including changes to the doorway frames and glass similar to other buildings in the Ladies' Historic District, with the glass adjacent to the new signage will be colored GAP blue; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the signage and storefront changes to 120 and 122 Fifth Avenue in accordance to plans and images presented by the Applicant.

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79 Fifth Avenue, application to replace existing frosted glazing with Coach logo with new brass panel and black Coach logo, insert new LED light, new display windows and new brass plaques with new Coach logo (same size) to replace...

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 79 Fifth Avenue (the Knickerbocker Building) located within the Ladies' Mile Historic District, was constructed in 1904-1905 by Architect Albert S. Gottleib in the Beaux-Arts Style; and

WHEREAS, The Coach Store, a tenant located at 79 Fifth Avenue (corner of East 16th Street) is applying to LPC for changes to the exterior of its retail store as follows:

  • Replace existing frosted glazing with Coach logo with new brass panel and black Coach logo, 
  • Insert new LED up-light above the entry door, 
  • New proscenium style picture frame display windows,
  • New brass plaques with Coach logo, same size but a different material to replace existing plaques at 16th street side and 5th Avenue side of corner pier; and 

WHEREAS, The "new" windows are the same size as the existing windows and the brass framing is inside the glass; and

WHEREAS, All of the foregoing changes are deemed consonant with the character of the building and the Historic District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application by Coach to modify the exterior of its retail store at 79 Fifth Avenue.

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1158-1160 Broadway Application to Modify the Building Façade

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 23 in favor; 15 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 1158-1160 Broadway, aka 19 West 27th Street, is located in the Madison Square North Historic District and this is an application to modify the building's façade; and

WHEREAS, 1158 Broadway is a brick building constructed as a store in 1880-81 and 1160 Broadway was constructed in 1871 as a mixed-use commercial and residential building; and

WHEREAS, In 1959 the buildings were joined into one tax lot and re-clad by prominent retail sector architects, Telchin & Companella, known for their mid-century modern style; and

WHEREAS, In the designation report for the Historic District the building's façade was characterized as non-historic; and

WHEREAS, The non-historic vertical black and red stripes with grey sheet metal stripes were designed to orient the eye vertically and away from the horizontal differences of the windows between the two parts of the buildings; and

WHEREAS, The structure has deteriorated to an unsafe condition and the applicant made emergency repairs to the façade under the guidance of LPC staff; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has elected to apply a limestone color paint on the red and black brick in an attempt to imitate the buildings on either side of the applicant under the guidance of LPC staff; and

WHEREAS, The applicant believes that the 1959 façade would be enhanced by the application of a non-historic "cornice;" therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed modifications of the building's façade at 1158-1160 Broadway, aka 19 West 27th Street.

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1501 Broadway, The paramount Building, an individual NYC Landmark, application to add signage to the 43rd and 44th Street elevations

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Paramount Building, located at 1501 Broadway in Times Square and granted Landmark status in 1985, was built in 1926-27, and has made a significant contribution to the development of the Broadway theater district; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by the firm of Rapp & Rapp, who were among the best-known and most prolific designers of elaborate movie theaters in the 1920s; and

WHEREAS, The Paramount Building first served as the Eastern headquarters for the Famous Players-Lasky Corporation, the forerunner of Paramount Pictures; and

WHEREAS, The building's distinctive massing is exemplary of the innovative setback skyscraper type of the 1920s; and

WHEREAS, 1501 Broadway is a thirty-three story building with a clock tower and was the tallest structure on Broadway north of the Woolworth Building at the time of its completion; and

WHEREAS, The owners, Paramount Leasehold L.P., have applied to LPC  to add signage to the 43rd and 44th Street elevations as follows:

A) Eleven 16 ft. X 12 ft. angled vertical  banner signs, extending from downward, between windows from the 4th to the 2nd floors, on the West 43rd and 44th Street elevations;

B) Two 80 ft. wide X 10 ft., high, 6 ft. deep,  LED horizontal signs to be placed at the 9th Floor brick facade, where there are no windows, on the West 43rd and 44th Street elevations; and

WHEREAS, CB5 finds that the banner signs described in A) are in keeping with the general signage program for the building which already has vertical corner signs, as well as the signage in the surrounding Times Square area; and

WHEREAS, CB5 also finds that the proposed excessively large and poorly positioned LED signs described in B) will materially detract from the facade of the Landmark visually; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application unless the LED signs described in B) are eliminated from the application for 1501 Broadway (43rd and 44th Streets).

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1560 Broadway (bet. 46th and 47th Streets), Embassy Theater, reconsideration of an application for modification and restoration

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The owners of 1560 Broadway (bet. 46th and 47th Streets), have filed an application with LPC for modification and restoration of portions of the Embassy Theater, an Interior Landmark, Designated November 17, 1987, located on the first floor of the building; and

WHEREAS, The Embassy Theatre, located on the East side of Broadway in Times Square, was an experiment by Loew's, Inc., which conceived an elegant and intimate 556-seat theatre that would attract an exclusive high-society audience; and

WHEREAS, The Theater was designed by Thomas W. Lamb, a prominent architect and designer of over 300 theaters and movie palaces in  20th Century United States,  as well as the Landmarked Paramount Hotel, also in CB5; and

WHEREAS, The Theater was decorated by the Rambusch Studio, an outstanding NYC design and lighting company and the ornate French-inspired interior featured elaborate plasterwork and murals by the Canadian painter, Arthur Crisp; and

WHEREAS, Furthering its salon-like appeal, the Embassy was the first movie house on Broadway to employ a woman manager, the heiress Gloria Gould, and it had the distinction of being operated almost exclusively by women; and

WHEREAS, Beginning with its gala opening on August 26, 1925, the Embassy was a reserved-seat showcase for some of the major MGM releases; and

WHEREAS, After four years, Loew's took over the nearby Mayfair and Criterion theatres, and the Embassy was acquired by Guild Enterprises on November 1, 1929; and

WHEREAS, The Embassy reopened as the first theater in the United States to have an all-newsreel format; and

WHEREAS, In 1949, when the appeal of old-style theatrical newsreels and screen magazines waned with the onset of television news, and with its small audience shrinking, the Embassy once again became a first-run movie theatre, showing feature films from Hollywood and the occasional foreign film; and

WHEREAS, After the Embassy closed in 1997, the theatre was renovated and reopened in 1998 as the Times Square Visitors Center with most of its interior features still intact; and

WHEREAS, The current owners propose major changes to this remarkable space to capitalize on the potential for retail leasing in the lower level of the building, including an intrusive escalator in the outer lobby to provide access to the basement, and reconfiguring the inner lobby and rear wall of the theater; and

WHEREAS, While some of the proposed modifications and renovations are not deemed objectionable, the overall effect of the plan would significantly alter the character of the landmarked interior and is not deemed warranted when there are alternative, undesignated locations in the building for providing basement access; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for 1560 Broadway (bet. 46th and 47th Streets), for modification and restoration of the Embassy Theater; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, after taking into consideration CB5's concerns, decided to postpone its LPC Hearing and change its Application in two significant ways:

1.      To move the proposed new escalators leading to the basement level toward the front of the building, to place them in only a portion of the Landmark vestibule and to move the lobby doors toward the front of the entry to the theater;

2.      To level the floor of the theater proper to eliminate the rake effect except for the perimeter of the theater where it is now planning to do extensive renovations to the murals and other wall decorations that it did not recite in the earlier Application; and

WHEREAS, The proposed escalators are intended to improve basement access and the leveling of the theater floor is intended similarly for enhanced economic value for leasing purposes; and

WHEREAS, CB5 still finds the escalator installation intrusive and inappropriate to this Interior Landmark when suitable space for an escalator is available in the adjacent retail space which is not designated; and

WHEREAS, CB5 appreciates the benefits of the restoration program proposed by the Applicant and encourages it to be initiated; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for modification and restoration of the interior landmark at 1560 Broadway which is deemed inappropriate to the designated interior.

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1780 Broadway, Application for restoration and alterations

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining; 1 present not entitled to vote:

WHEREAS, 1780 Broadway, is a 12 story building located between West 57th and West 58th Streets, which was designed by Howard Van Doren Shaw and constructed in 1909 for the B.F. Goodrich Company; and

WHEREAS, Clad with mostly red brick and limestone, the west façade wall facing Broadway is "distinguished by abstract, stylized ornament that suggests the influence of Elizabethan and Jacobean sources, the English Arts and Crafts movement and the Vienna Secession"; and

WHEREAS, Subsequent to B.F. Goodrich Company's eighteen years of occupancy, the building has had several owners, and although the ground floor was substantially altered by the early 1950s, the upper stories retain most of their original materials and ornament; and

WHEREAS, The building was acquired by Extell Development Corporation in 2006; and on November 10, 2009, the Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the B.F. Goodrich Company Building at 1780 Broadway as an individual Landmark; and

WHEREAS, Extell Development Corporation has filed an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness seeking permission to perform restoration and alteration work, including the removal and replacement of existing storefronts, windows and doors, and the installation of rooftop HVAC equipment; and

WHEREAS, The two story building base will be reconstructed and restored in a tripartite configuration to resemble the building base in 1909, at which time this served as a B. F. Goodrich showroom; and

WHEREAS, In the left and right hand side storefront bays, which had historically served as entrances to the office building and showroom, new marble surrounds and entablatures, as well as new glass and metal infill panels will be installed to evoke the original configuration, and these bays will now serve as retail display windows for the Nordstrom Department Store which will occupy this entire building; and

WHEREAS, In the central storefront bay, which had historically served as showroom display windows, fluted cast iron window surrounds will be restored and replicated, new terracotta columns and capitals to match the originals will be installed, and new glass and metal infill panels will be installed to evoke the original configuration, and this bay will now serve as entrances to the new retail space, to be occupied by Nordstrom; and

WHEREAS, New HVAC equipment would be installed at the rooftop approximately 40 feet behind the façade, and would not be visible from the street according to the Applicant; and

WHEREAS, The scope of work in the proposed façade restoration, much of which is being reviewed and approved at the staff level of the Landmarks Preservation Commission, would include:

1.      To clean, patch and repair to all limestone and brick masonry as needed

2.      To selectively repoint with new mortar to match the existing in appearance, aggregate and tooling

3.      To salvage and restore cast iron window sills

4.      To provide new lead T-covers for coping and all wash joints

5.      To remove railing for off-site restoration and re-installation

6.      To salvage and restore existing original windows at the 3rd, 8th and 11th Floors

7.      To provide new one-over-one double hung windows at the 2nd, 4th through 7th, 9th and 10th Floors to match sight lines and material of historic windows

8.      To provide new glazed infill at the 12th Floor based on sight lines and material of historic infill; and

WHEREAS, The proposed scope of restoration and alteration work is extensive, and although not a complete replication, the proposed changes would be in the spirit of the design vocabulary and intent of the original building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness of the proposed restoration and alteration work to be performed at 1780 Broadway.

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1790 Broadway, Application for restoration and alterations

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining; 1 present not entitled to vote:

WHEREAS, 1790 Broadway, is a 20 story Beaux-Arts style office building, located at the southeast corner of West 58th Street, which was designed by the prominent architecture firm Carrère and Hastings, and constructed in 1911-12 for the United States Rubber Company; and

WHEREAS, The building has a façade which continues around both Broadway and West 58th Street, clad in delicately-carved Vermont Dorset Marble, crowned by a broad copper cornice, and features a distinctive rounded corner and vertically-grouped windows with metal spandrels and thin continuous piers; and

WHEREAS, United States Rubber Company remained in the building until 1951, and subsequently the first two stories were entirely reconfigured, resulting in cladding them in a glass and polished finish gray granite façade; and

WHEREAS, On December 19, 2000, the Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the United States Rubber Company Building at 1790 Broadway as an individual Landmark; and

WHEREAS, The building's current owners have filed an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness seeking permission to perform restoration and alteration work, including restoration of the original masonry, new storefronts, signage and marquees on the first two stories; and

WHEREAS, The first two stories would be reconfigured with arched masonry openings which are inspired by, but would not be an exact duplication of the 1912 façade, and the new façade would be constructed in a high quality cast stone to match the existing marble; and

WHEREAS, The distinctive rounded corner would be replicated and replaced, however, at the first story this would contain a large window following the radial profile, unlike the original which was entirely marble masonry; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant proposes to have a modern metal canopy installed outside a significant area of the first floor masonry openings along Broadway and West 58th Street, and at the rounded corner, containing signage for Nordstrom, the new retail tenant of this building; and

WHEREAS, There would be an additional modern metal canopy installed above the office building entrance on Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work is based largely upon the 1912 façade, and as there is little to no historical precedent of the usage of canopies on this building, and CB5 considers their usage in this restoration inappropriate; and

WHEREAS, Although CB5 would prefer that the distinctive rounded corner would be replicated entirely of masonry rather than in a combination with glass, the proposed scope of restoration and alteration work is extensive, and although not an entire replication, the other proposed changes would be in the spirit of the design vocabulary and intent of the original building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the Application for a Certificate of Appropriateness of the proposed restoration and alteration work to be performed at 1790 Broadway, unless the modern metal canopies are eliminated.

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217 West 57th Street, Application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to construct a new building which would cantilever over the western portion of the Landmark site of American Fine Arts Society building at 215 West 57th Street…

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 10, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 26 in favor; 3 opposed; 6 abstaining; 1 present not entitled to vote:

WHEREAS, Extell Development Corporation is proposing to construct a new through block building to be located at 217 West 57th Street, between Broadway and Seventh Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The site of the proposed new building would be adjacent to the American Fine Arts Society building at 215 West 57th Street, a four story French Renaissance style, through block townhouse style building, designed by the prominent architect, Henry Janeway Hardenbergh, constructed in 1891-92 on the block bounded by West 57th street, West 58th Street, Broadway and Seventh Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The design of the rich and stately façade, a combination of white marble, ornate terra cotta and buff brick, is inspired by the 16th Century hunting lodge of King Francis I in the Fontainebleau forest; and

WHEREAS, On December 10, 1968, the Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the Arts building at 215 West 57th Street as an individual Landmark, and subsequently it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980; and

WHEREAS, Pending their membership's approval, the Art Students League, which has been the sole proprietor of the Arts building at 215 West 57th Street since 1941, is considering a transaction which would transfer the unused air rights toward the development of the proposed new Extell building at 217 West 57th Street and permit the cantilever; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new building would have façades of low reflective glass, and would have a 150 feet wide street wall at West 57th Street and a 195 feet wide street wall at West 58th Street; and

WHEREAS, Although the height of the building is subject to change the drawings Extell shared with the Community Board indicated that the new building would be approximately 1,424 feet, containing retail, hotel and residential uses, making it the tallest building in NYC, except for 1 World Trade Center which includes a 400 foot spire; and

WHEREAS, Keeping in line with the height of the adjacent Arts Landmark, the base of the proposed new building would rise to 97 feet high, and this would contain five levels of retail space to be occupied by a Nordstrom Department Store, with its main entrance on West 57th Street and with entrances on West 58th Street and Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The new building would also have separate street level entrances to lobbies for the hotel on West 58th Street and residences on West 57th Street that would occupy the tower above the Nordstrom store; and

WHEREAS, The Nordstrom Department Store, expected to open in 2018, will contain over 200,000 sq. ft. of selling space spanning five floors in the new building on West 57th Street and interconnecting to 1780 Broadway and 1790 Broadway, two other individual Landmark properties, with additional entrances to the store on Broadway.  Proposed changes to these buildings are in related CB5 resolutions; and

WHEREAS, Accommodation of the multi-purposes on the upper floors, throughout the proposed new building, would be achieved through a multi-cantilevered design, which would include a soffit underneath the residences which would measure approximately 88'-10" deep (from north to south) and would protrude 28 feet toward the east over the 75 feet wide Arts building; and

WHEREAS, The underside of residential cantilever's soffit would be constructed 291 feet above grade at West 57th Street, 194'-7" above the high roof point of the landmark's West 57th Street façade, 288'-9" above grade at West 58th Street, and 243'-1" above the high roof point of the landmark's West 58th Street façade; and

WHEREAS, In accordance with Zoning requirements pertaining to pedestrian circulation, the proposed new building would be constructed to include a 16 feet wide through block pedestrian arcade immediately adjacent to the Arts building; and

WHEREAS, Additionally, in connection with the proposed building, there may be additional amenity requirements imposed by various NYC agencies or zoning regulations in connection with the Special Midtown District.  The Community Board and its relevant committees should be consulted in the case that any such amenities, including those that relate to transportation, public seating, or streetscape additions, have the potential to be inappropriate additions and may impose on the visual aesthetic of the Arts Students League and the other Landmark Designated buildings in the immediate area, including Carnegie Hall, The Osborne, and the Alwyn Court.  The applicant should agree to work with the Community Board and affected landmark building(s) to find alternatives that do not affect buildings that have certain protections under Landmark regulations, even if the proposed amenity is not subject to LPC review or ULUURP process; and

WHEREAS, the Community Board has not been given any meaningful information about whether such amenities are being planned or contemplated, or if such amenities are required to be made as part of the construction of this new building, Extell is strongly urged to share that information with the Community Board to ensure that any such amenities or improvements are appropriately sited from a pedestrian movement, transit legibility, and landmarks perspective; and

WHEREAS, there is concern of how a 1,424 feet tall building (and potentially taller) sited between West 57th Street and West 58th Street might impact Central Park, a Scenic Landmark; and

WHEREAS, Given the size of this building and its potential impact to the context of so many surrounding landmarks – several on the applicant zoning lot and others including Carnegie Hall and multiple landmark structures just a short distance away - the applicant should have shared with CB5 a shadow study which is increasingly easy to perform with 3D architectural modeling software; and

WHEREAS, Given the size of this building there was very little information provided about how this building would define itself on the skyline either through the use of materials, mechanical equipment on the roof of the building, antennae or lighting; and

WHEREAS, Given the presence of this building on the skyline and from across NYC and the region the building's treatment of the skyline is an incredibly relevant part of this discussion and should be considered more carefully and more fully as a part of this discussion by LPC and other stakeholders; and

WHEREAS, Despite requests to explain what an as-of-right building would look like absent the cantilever the applicant informed the Community Board that the information was unavailable and the Board finds it hard to believe that the applicant has not done careful massing studies of a building which would not require LPC approval; and

WHEREAS, Although the stated rationale for the cantilever over the landmark was the creation of a clean Nordstrom's floorplate, there have been a variety of questions raised about cantilever functioning to ensure views to Central Park in light of another project being developed on the block to the north by Vornado at approximately 900 feet tall; and

WHEREAS, Over the course of the two years there have been a variety of construction accidents as a part of the applicant's other building at 157 West 57th Street, including multiple evacuations of the block; and

WHEREAS, No information was provided to the Board to help us understand how these accidents could be avoided and how construction would occur with minimal disruption to the surrounding neighborhood for a building which is approximately 50% taller and will likely be even harder to build; and

WHEREAS, The construction of these new very tall buildings raises new construction challenges which need to be addressed in a transparent and coordinated fashion across several agencies, especially the Department of Transportation and the Department of Buildings; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five is deeply troubled to learn that the applicant received tax abatements for the construction of 157 West 57th Street for luxury housing and these tax breaks are being investigated by a Commission formed by Governor Cuomo on corruption; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five does not believe that tax breaks are appropriate for high end residential housing and calls on the applicant to not pursue these tax breaks for 217 West 57th Street; and

WHEREAS, a number of members of the public who came to testify spoke about concerns relating to loading and unloading of trucks on West 58th Street which is a narrow street; and

WHEREAS, Nordstrom's – unlike many surrounding uses – will bring with it a new set of impacts which need to be addressed before the building is open including loading and unloading, taxi drop offs and pickups, and new pedestrian challenges; and 

WHEREAS, Having thoroughly reviewed the Applicant's presentation and evaluated concerns of neighbors and local residents, CB5 finds that the proposed new building's eastern cantilever and the roof of the adjacent landmark would have a negative visual impact on the setting for the landmark, and potentially raises very significant concerns about the impact of construction on the landmark buildings in the surrounding area and the neighborhood overall.  Furthermore, neither the stated rationale for the cantilever – a clean retail floorplate – or the need to ensure views to the north and Central Park to avoid a new building being built on Central Park South directly across West 58th Street is an appropriate rationale for this incursion over the landmark; and

WHEREAS, many members of the surrounding community appeared at the CB5's full board meeting to raise concerns about this proposed building, many of these concerns are captured in this resolution.  We hope that these issues and others start a more meaningful and substantive dialogue with Extell and our elected officials in an effort to forge a better relationship between Extell and the community in which it seeks to build; and

WHEREAS, CB5 finds that the proposed design of the new building will have a material adverse effect on the landmark at 215 West 57th Street; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the Application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to construct a new building at 217 West 57th Street which would cantilever over the western portion of the American Fine Arts Society building at 215 West 57th Street for all of the reasons noted above; and, be it further

RESOLVED, Community Board Five is eager to continue to work with the applicant, elected officials, relevant city agencies (DOT, DCP, DOB, LPC, MTA, and others) and the surrounding community to ensure that the building that is eventually built responds to the concerns outlined in this resolution and that a broader conversation about the design review for skyline buildings and the appropriate urban design controls for this neighborhood begin in earnest.

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September 2013

5 Madison Avenue bet. 23rd & 24th Streets, MetLife Building, application to remove non-original storefront infill at the ground floor and install new metal-and-glass infill, canopies and signage.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 39 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The building located at 5 Madison Avenue, also known as the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company Building (the "building"), is a Venetian style office building designed by Pierre L. LeBrun built in l907-09 and altered in 1960-64; and

WHEREAS, In 1989 the building was designated by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission as an individual landmark; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, Marriott International, Inc., intends to convert the building into a hotel, under its "Edition" brand, which will have its main entrance on East 24th Street; and 

WHEREAS, The renovated  building will include a restaurant, not named as yet, to be leased to a separate operator which will have an entrance on Madison Avenue; and 

WHEREAS, In November 2006 CB5 approved (37-0-1) a previous renovation to convert the same building (described as 1, not 5,Madison Avenue) into condominiums including these modifications:

  • Install new doors at the entrance to the building on 24th Street, the only entrance to the building, and to recess the existing revolving door five feet so that the entrance is compliant with federal law, namely the Americans with Disabilities Act and Local Law 57 of the Municipal Code of the City of New York;
  • "Drop" to a door one of three windows located on the building's Madison Avenue facade (the southernmost storefront window) to accommodate a restaurant to be located there; and

WHEREAS, These changes were approved by LPC, never constructed, and are being incorporated into the new Marriott design; and

WHEREAS, In addition to the above modifications, Marriott is now requesting LPC approval of two stainless steel canopies, one above the East 24th Street entrance and one at the Madison Avenue restaurant entrance, neither of which was in the prior application; and

WHEREAS, CB5 views the installation of a 10 ft. X 10 ft. 3 in. canopy (with discreet signage on its side panels identifying the hotel, plus lighting and heating elements) at the East 24 Street hotel entrance to be acceptable, even though it is a new building element, because it is deemed a conventional amenity for a hotel of this caliber; and

WHEREAS, CB5 views the proposed canopy for the restaurant entrance on Madison Avenue to be inappropriate and not in keeping with the historical character of the building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for renovations at 5 Madison Avenue bet. 23rd & 24th Streets, MetLife Building, consisting of removal of non-original storefront infill at the ground floor and install new metal-and-glass infill, canopies and signage, unless the restaurant entrance canopy on Madison Avenue is eliminated in the Application.

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7 West 21st Street- Application to construct a new building on a parking lot.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 37 in favor; 2 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 7-13 West 21st Street ("Site") is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant, 7 West 21 LLC, has applied for permission to construct a 275,760 sq. ft. residential building ("Building") as-of-right on the Site which has an allowable 287,955 sq. ft. FAR; and

WHEREAS, The Building will replace a 256 space ground level parking lot, which is currently on the Site; and

WHEREAS, The Building will occupy the entire mid-block Site between West 21st Street and West 22nd Street; and

WHEREAS, The Building will have a height of 185'-0" to roof, a width of 106'-0" on 21st Street and a width of 137'-0" on 22nd Street; and 

WHEREAS, Morris Adjmi is the architect of the Building and the Building is appropriate for its surroundings and the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant plans to apply for a special permit by early 2014 to build a garage below the Building with a maximum of 200 spaces which will replace an existing special permit for a garage with 363 spaces (reapproved by CB5 in January 2012); therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to construct a residential building at 7-13 West 21st Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District.

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11 West 27th Street aka 234 5th Avenue, application to replace windows..

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 39 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 11 West 27th Street, is located in the Madison Square North Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The five story building was previously two mid-ninetieth century buildings, joined in 1926 and re-clad in the Art-Deco style; and 

WHEREAS, The existing double hung windows do not date to the 1926 renovation; and 

WHEREAS, The historic configuration consisted of a center pane of banner glass flanked by two tilt windows; and 

WHEREAS, Replicating the historic fenestration with today's energy efficient windows would overly burden the facade structure with its weight; and

WHEREAS, The proposal is to have a smaller, fixed, center pane of glass, flanked by two, high efficiency double hung windows; and 

WHEREAS, The double hung windows are aligned, and proportioned to be harmonious with the overall design of the façade; and 

WHEREAS, The fixed center pane of glass is reminiscent of the 1926 design, and double hung windows are the predominant style in the District; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for window replacement at 11 West 27th Street.

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39 West 23rd Street, 35 West 23rd Street, & 22 West 24th Street – application to (a) construct a new building on a parking lot with a cantilever over existing loft building at 35 West 23rd Street and…

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 35 in favor; 4 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to build a new through-block building on an existing parking lot running between 23rd and 24th Street in the middle of the block bounded by Fifth and Sixth Avenues, located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The new building would cantilever over the existing five-story adjacent landmark building to the east along 23rd Street (35 West 23rd Street), which is on the same zoning lot as the new building site; and

WHEREAS, The new building requires a certificate of appropriateness and a report from LPC to the City Planning Commission pursuant to Section 74-711 of the Zoning Resolution for use (residential and retail) and bulk (setback and rear yard) waivers, which report requires a finding that the adjacent landmark building would be restored and subject to a continuing maintenance program; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new building would rise to 196 feet (17 stories) along the street wall at 23rd street prior to a setback of 15', at which point the front wall would rotate to face east and rise an additional 7 stories and cantilever over the adjacent building (with maximum projection of 12 feet), for a total building height of 278 feet (24 stories); and

WHEREAS, The windows along the 23rd Street frontages (south and east) would be recessed to allow room for plantings; and 

WHEREAS, The proposed new building would rise to 117 ½ feet along 24th Street, with a gallery and an exterior garden connecting the 23rd Street and 24th Street portions of the building; and 

WHEREAS, The primary materials for the proposed new building would be: 

  • Limestone (or similar): Used for the double height grid on the south elevation at 23rd Street, east elevation and north elevation (23rd street);
  • Dark gray Granite:  Used at the building base on both 23rd and 24th Street;
  • Zinc : To be utilized as the cladding material on the secondary and tertiary elements within the double height grid on the 23rd street facade (both south and east elevations), including the spandrels and articulated vertical post (the guardrails, door and window frames would be painted aluminum to match);
  • White Terra Cotta: Used for the open baguette system on the upper portion of the north and south facing 23rd street facades and for the rainscreen system on the east and west elevations;
  • Metal: The 24th street portion of the building utilizes a darker metal at the spandrels, guardrail and storefront, which will either be a statuary bronze, muntz metal and/or painted aluminum; and
  • Glass: Used for guardrails on levels 3-9 of the 24th street portion of the building; all doors and windows will be an insulated glass to meet current NYC energy code; and

WHEREAS, The preservation plan for the adjacent landmark building (35 West 23rd Street) would include:

  • Storefront façade restoration, including new wood storefronts, triple-arched transoms and paneled double doors;
  • New wood single-pane pivot windows on the second floor; 
  • New wood double-hung windows on floors 3-5;
  • Façade restoration, including removal of masonry coating, cleaning and re-pointing brick, patching damaged stone, and fixing existing cast iron sheet metal fixtures; and
  • Replacing missing sections of the sheet metal cornice; and

WHEREAS, The adjacent landmark building would be subject to a continuing maintenance plan which would be recorded against the property; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds the proposed new building to be an innovative modern interpretation of historic elements endemic to the Ladies Mile Historic District which relate harmoniously to the district and the adjacent landmark building, and therefore an appropriate addition to the district; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds that the adjacent landmark building would be restored and subject to a continuing maintenance program; and

WHEREAS, If approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, the Section 74-711 use and bulk waivers would come before Community Board Five as part of the City Planning Commission approval process; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 39 West 23rd Street, 35 West 23rd Street, & 22 West 24th Street, within the Ladies Mile Historic District, to construct a new building on a parking lot with a cantilever over existing loft building located at 35 West 23rd Street and recommends that the Landmark Preservation Commission issue a report to the City Planning Commission pursuant to Section 74-711 of the Zoning Resolution for use and bulk waivers.

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49-51 West 23rd Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenue (north Side) –Application to replace ground floor store front and building entrances.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 49 West 23rd street is located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The building owner, Adams &Co., proposes to remove the Circa 1960 Lobby entrance of black granite and stainless steel and to reconstruct a new entry portal of carved limestone that is similar to the original design, and  

WHEREAS, The new decorative limestone portal, which mirrors that of the freight entrance to the west, will frame new glass "Herculite" doors and a glass transom, and

WHEREAS, The metal freight entrance doors – which are not original – are to be replaced by a set of painted metal panel doors and a large glass transom and these elements recall the original design as can be seen in the 1910 Tax photo, and

WHEREAS, The original central retail storefront will be replaced by a new, enlarged glass storefront system with "Herculite" doors and glass transom, and the existing transom above will be refurbished as needed to match the original design.

WHEREAS, Although the designs of the renovation are deemed generally acceptable, CB5 believes that the owners should consider using:

  • Materials and proportions that recall the original design as it can be seen in the 1910 tax photo.
  • An alternate to a modern frameless "Hurculite" door system that is more sympathetic with the original design; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application of 49 West 23rd Street, for restoration work to include replacement of doors and transom and installation of new glass storefront, unless the design includes materials, proportions and doors more appropriate to the historic character of the Building and the Historic District.

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53-57 West 23rd Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenue (north Side) –Application to replace ground floor store front and building entrances add signage and flag poles.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 53 West 23rd Street is located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The building was designed in 1915 by W.H. Birkmire for Nameloc Construction Company, and has a terra cotta facade with large windows that define the appearance of this loft building that is little changed with the exception of modifications to the original lobby entrance, and  

WHEREAS, The building's three-story base and fourth floor served as the New York City headquarters of Morimura Bros., a Japanese emporium and import export firm and has its name affixed in raised metal letters to the spandrel above the third floor and is visible in the 1917 photographs of the building, and

WHEREAS, The building owner, Adams &Co. proposes to remove the Circa 1960 Lobby entrance of black granite and stainless steel and reconstruct a new entry portal of terra cotta that recalls the original design, as follows: 

  • The west service doors with be replaced with a new building lobby entrance of glass doors,
  • At the office entrance, new terra cotta piers and decorative arched entryway will frame new glass doors in a widened entry bay similar in design to the original,
  • Existing original storefront, including decorative metal base, mullions and bulkhead is to be refurbished, 
  • The existing retail entry doors will be widened,
  • The building name will be restored to the spandrel above the third floor in a manner similar to the letters that are visible in the 1917 photographs of the building but will reflect the name of the current owner Adams or a tenant, 
  • Two flag poles, one on the east and one on the western edge of the façade are proposed, and

WHEREAS, The design of the renovation parts 1 thru 5 are deemed generally acceptable, CB5 recommends that the owners do not add flag poles to the façade; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application of 53 West 23rd Street for restoration work to include replacement of lobby entrance and installation of new glass doors, new storefront and signage and installation of two flag poles unless the applicant eliminates the installation of the two flagpoles at either end of the facade.

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109-113 West 57th Street, Steinway Hall, application for: (a) Exterior alterations to the existing landmark building and (b) Interior alterations to create a new entrance to the landmark Steinway & Sons Reception Room.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 3 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, An application has been submitted to LPC which requests permission to perform exterior alterations to the designated Landmark known as "Steinway Hall" at 109-113 West 57th Street, a 16 story Neo-Classical style building, commissioned by the renowned piano manufacturers Steinway & Sons, constructed by Thompson-Starrett Co. in 1924-25 to the design of architects Warren & Wetmore, designated as individual Landmark on November 13, 2001; and

WHEREAS, The application also requests permission to perform interior alterations to the designated Landmark known as "Steinway & Sons Reception Room" , the double-height octagonal rotunda which is visible from West 57th Street, widely considered to be one of New York City's most impressive Neo-Renaissance style interiors, which was designated as an Interior landmark on September 10, 2013; and

WHEREAS, Steinway Hall is L-shaped in plan, comprised of four elements:

  • The West 57th Street façade, 63 feet of frontage, clad in Indiana Limestone with a polished pink granite water table, rising 12 stories before setting back with a 4 story tower, which is capped by a set-back penthouse story. The eastern wall of this façade is also visible and is clad in Indiana Limestone above the fifth story, and in brick below.
  • The West 58th Street façade, 100 feet of frontage, tan brick, Indiana Limestone and terracotta, with setbacks above the ninth and twelfth stories.
  • The Inner Courtyard at the building's central core. As stated in the designation report, this is capped by a "campanile-like mechanical/tank tower with a steep pyramidal roof and large lantern."
  • A rear yard low rise building, which is window-less and clad in structural brick. This had been used as storage space. This element became part of the public view subsequent to designation due to demolition of the adjacent building, which formerly housed the Ritz Thrift Shop; and

WHEREAS, Steinway Hall has been subject to nine decades of harsh freeze-thaw conditions inherent to the climate of the Northeast, as well as acid rain which had periodically been typical in New York City, and like most stone and masonry structures this requires some maintenance and restorative work; and

WHEREAS, JDS Development Group, Steinway Hall's current owners are proposing to perform the following list of restorative work and alterations to the existing building:

  • To clean the masonry cladding and architectural elements, and to repoint the stone and brick within the West 57th Street and West 58th Street facades.
  • To remove existing brick at the eastern wall of the West 57th Street façade and to replace this with Indiana Limestone cladding and cornice to match the southern façade wall
  • To create new window openings on the fourth story at the eastern wall and to install windows matching those at the fifth story and above.
  • To perform a restoration of the copper roof capping the penthouse story.
  • To remove two existing metal roll-down doors at the West 58th Street loading docks, and to replace these with solid wood garage doors, matching the panel detailing of the doors at "109 West 57th Street".
  • To remove one metal pedestrian door at the West 58th Street loading docks, and to replace this with a dold wood door, matching the panel detailing of the doors at "109 West 57th Street".
  • To restore one existing pedestrian door at the West 58th Street loading docks.
  • To remove the existing brick recess in the mechanical/tank tower arches, and to replace these with glass windows.
  • To perform a restoration of the copper roof capping the mechanical/tank tower.
  • To remove the rear yard low rise storage building; and

WHEREAS, The applicant also proposes to penetrate through the eastern wall in order to create a new plate glass paneled entrance into Steinway & Sons Reception Room rotunda, thus removing a portion of an existing plaster interior wall; and

WHEREAS, The design of the proposed new plate glass paneled entrance is based largely upon the details of the glass paneled window at the western wall of the rotunda; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new eastern entrance into the rotunda is to follow the profile of existing pilasters, architrave and archway, and the existing roundel will be mounted inside the new glass paneling; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new eastern entrance would connect Steinway & Sons Reception Room's rotunda to the proposed new building at the adjacent site; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new building would have approximately 43'-0" of West 57th Street frontage adjacent to Steinway Hall; and

WHEREAS, As of right, one could develop a building on the adjacent site which would rise twelve stories above West 57th Street before requiring a setback, the proposed new building would have a glass façade rising only six stories to approximately 85'-0", in which an atrium space would be enclosed; and

WHEREAS, There would be a 57'-0"deep setback above the atrium space in which a Summer Garden is proposed to be placed, and from which the proposed new tower would rise; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new tower would have a glass façade, with numerous feathered set backs on the southern wall and a façade of glass, glazed terracotta and bronze on the other walls, which will rise to approximately 1,300 feet; and

WHEREAS, The proposed restorative work on the exterior of Steinway Hall is substantial, the proposed changes at West 58th Street would serve as embellishment, and the proposed changes at the mechanical/tank tower appear to be minimal; and

WHEREAS, Since, historically, this was outside of public view, removal of the rear yard two story low rise building would not have a negative impact upon the views of Landmark Steinway Hall; and

WHEREAS, The proposed modification which might have the most impact is the creation of a new eastern entrance to Steinway & Sons Reception Room rotunda, this would take cues from existing architectural elements, namely the glass paneled window at the western wall of the rotunda, and this new entrance will be harmonious with the Landmark interior; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new atrium and tower's glass materiality and massing would not obscure the style, materials, setbacks and massing of Steinway Hall, whose picturesque towers and decorative elements make it a monumental presence along West 57th Street; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to perform exterior alterations to Steinway Hall, 109-113 West 57th Street, to perform interior alterations to create a new entrance to Steinway & Sons Reception Room.

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July 2013

10 West 28th Street, application to replace the existing two story non-historic storefront and to install new storefront infill and signage.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 10 West 28th Street, is a five story converted 1856 row house in the Madison Square North Historic District that has been substantially modified architecturally over the years when the District became transformed for commercial tenancies; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to remove the non-historic façade and infill and replace them with a tasteful wood and metal façade that is more harmonious with the District; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposes to add 9" metal pin signage across the façade and install hidden, compliant, LED up-lights above the entrance; and

WHEREAS, The owner intends to use this neglected building for lower floor restaurant and upper floor residential occupancy, connecting the ground floor to the Nomad Hotel which it also owns; and

WHEREAS, The materials, design and proposed installation are deemed more appropriate than the existing condition; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to replace the existing two story non-historic storefront and to install new storefront infill and signage 10 West 28th Street (bet. 5th Avenue and Broadway).

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51 West 52nd Street (5th Avenue and Avenue of the Americas), (CBS Headquarters), application for installation of removable planting trays on the granite knee wall around the building's plaza

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 51 West 52nd Street, the CBS Building, also known as "Black Rock," constructed between 1961 and 1964, has been an individual NYC Landmark since October 21,1997; and

WHEREAS, The building was the only NYC skyscraper designed by the renowned Finnish architect, Eero Saarinen, who was commissioned by the then CBS Chairman, William S. Paley, with additional design work done by the eminent architects, Kevin Roche and John Dinkeloo, after Saarinen's death; and

WHEREAS, The CBS headquarters is a freestanding 38-story, 800,000 sq. ft. tower sheathed in flame-textured Canadian black granite and glass and stands in a sunken plaza that occupies the entire western end of the block bounded by Fifth and Sixth Avenues and West 52nd and 53rd Streets; and

WHEREAS, The plaza is paved in a gray granite slightly lighter in color than the granite used in the building's piers and is sunken below street level by approximately two feet forming a retaining wall with parapets and vertical slits on the inside faces; and

WHEREAS, The owner has applied to LPC for approval for installation of  removable planting trays and granite logos on the granite knee wall around the building's plaza; and

WHEREAS, Saarinen is quoted in the 1997 LPC Designation Report:

"We tried to place the building on the site so that we could have a plaza and still not destroy the street line. A tower should not be tied in with lower street buildings. It should stand alone with air and light around it. A plaza is a very necessary thing in a city. It lets people sit in the sun and look at the sky. A plaza allows a building to be seen. Our buildings should be seen, because they are monuments of our time. But ... we have to remember the street line and we have to remember the space between is as important as the towers. These arrangements should be orderly and beautiful" - Eero Saarinen - On His Work

The Designation Report states: "Planters with trees have been placed in the plaza, planters with bushes have been placed on the parapets of the retaining wall"; and

WHEREAS, The proposal by the owner claims that the removable modular planting trays are intended to "soften the edges" of the plaza, however the installation of these elements would be to eliminate the seating available for those who want to sit along the low knee wall, contrary to Saarinen's intention that the plaza should be a place for respite and contemplation; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recognizes that the use of the plaza for public seating may constitute  a maintenance burden for the building's owners, it is nevertheless clearly a part of the total design that it should be utilized for this purpose; and 

WHEREAS, The Application includes two, 2 sq. ft high granite blocks at the corners of the knee wall on Sixth Avenue to contain the CBS "Eye" logo, which is not part of the original design; and

WHEREAS, The plaza contains wooden Rosenwach tree planters which are not sympathetic to the building's International Style architecture; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five deems both the installation of the planting trays, the CBS granite logos and the existing tree planters all inappropriate with the building's design and the architect's intentions; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five recommends that alternative proposals more harmonious with the plaza, including provision of seating for the public along the parapet knee wall, should be considered; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the Application for 51 West 52nd Street (bet. 5th Avenue and Avenue of the Americas), (CBS Headquarters), for installation of removable planting trays and granite logos on the granite knee wall around the building's plaza.

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109-113 West 57th Street (aka 106-116 West 58th Street), STEINWAY & SONS RECEPTION ROOM & HALLWAY, FIRST FLOOR INTERIOR, proposed Designation

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The exterior of Steinway Hall 109-113 West 57th Street (aka 106-116 West 58th Street) was Designated a New York City Landmark November 13, 2001 (see LPC Designation Report: http://www.neighborhoodpreservationcenter.org/db/bb_files/2001-SteinwayHall.pdf for a complete history of the Steinway company and a description of the building); and

WHEREAS, LPC is now proposing that the Steinway & Sons Reception Room and Hallway, first floor Interior also be Designated; and

WHEREAS, Commissioned by the prominent New York City piano manufacturerSteinway & Sons in 1924-25, the Steinway & Sons Reception Room is one of New York City's most impressive neo- 
Renaissance style interiors; and

WHEREAS, This Room and the adjacent areas were designed by the architects, Warren & Wetmore, who also designed Grand Central Terminal and other prominent NYC Landmarks; and

WHEREAS, The primary space is a double-height octagonal rotunda where customers meet store representatives before entering various piano showrooms; and

WHEREAS, The Room is visible from the street through an arched display window and from the adjoining hallway that leads to the building's elevator lobby; and

WHEREAS, This lavishly-decorated room has a domed ceiling with allegorical murals in the style of the celebrated Swiss-Austrian painter Angelika Kauffman, as well as a crystal chandelier; and

WHEREAS, Walter L. Hopkins, of the architectural firm Warren & Wetmore, planned the building and its interiors, working with the decorative painters Paul Arndt and Cooper & Gentiluomo; and

WHEREAS, Visitors enter from a separate entrance on the east side of the 57th Street facade, passing through a small foyer that mirrors the adjacent hallway; each of the four main walls has a large white marble arch that rests on fluted Iconic columns, as well as green marble pilasters; though a glass door and glazed infill divides the rotunda from the adjacent hallway, these rooms read as one continuous space due to the use of similar architectural elements and materials; and

WHEREAS, At the time of completion, these first floor interiors garnered considerable attention in the press, appearing in the pages of the Architectural Record, Architecture & Building magazine, and The Music Trade Review; and

WHEREAS, This interior space remains a timeless monument to classical music and architecture, as well as to Steinway & Sons, and is considered one of the handsomest retail spaces in New York City; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Landmark Designation of Steinway and Sons reception room & hallway, first floor interior, 109-113 West 57th Street (aka 106-116 West 58th Street), Manhattan, first floor interior consisting of the Steinway & Sons Reception Room, including the domed rotunda and mezzanine, the east foyer and stairs leading to the mezzanine; the hallway of the public corridor, up to the north glass doors, that adjoins the Reception Room; and the fixtures and components of these spaces, including but not limited to, wall and ceiling surfaces, floor surfaces, ceiling murals, arches, pilasters, stairs, landings, decorative medallions, metal railings, metal grilles, chandeliers and lighting fixtures, door enframents, doors and windows, and attached furnishings and decorative elements.

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455-457 Madison Avenue (50th and 51st Streets), application for replacement of the non-historic stone in the center of the plaza with new stone in a simpler pattern

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS,  455-457 Madison Avenue, between 50th & 51st Streets, the Villard Houses, was constructed in 1884, designed by the architectural firm, McKim, Meade and Whitethree years after they started their company, commissioned by Henry Villard, then president of the Northern Pacific Railroad; and

WHEREAS, In 1968, the NYC Landmarks Preservation designated the complex an individual Landmark; and

WHEREAS, The NYC real estate developer, Harry B. Helmsley, constructed the 51-story New York Palace Hotel tower directly behind the original building, designed by architects, Emery Roth & Sons and Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer, in 1977which was completed in 1980; and

WHEREAS, What was once The Villard Mansion's carriage entrance on Madison Avenue is now the New York Palace's famed Courtyard; and

WHEREAS, The owners are requesting LPC approval to replace the circular non-historic patterned stone in the Courtyard with a neutral grey granite stone; and

WHEREAS, The original material for this area is not known and may even have been grass; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for replacement of the non-historic stone in the center of the plaza with new stone in a simpler pattern at 455-457 Madison Avenue (50th and 51st Streets).

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915 Broadway (b/t 20th & 21st), application for modifications to the building’s existing canopy and entranceway

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 2 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 915 Broadway is a 20 story commercial building, constructed in 1926, located between East 20th and 21st Streets within the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The owners, ABS Partners, have applied to LPC for changes be made to restore the Tudor Revival style of the westernmost entrance on Broadway; and

WHEREAS, This restoration will replace the currently existing stainless steel and glass entranceway and canopy; and

WHEREAS, The proposal will remove the non-historic canopy with a recreation of the original arched entrance in buff-colored cast stone to match the historic façade; and

WHEREAS, The design of the archway will harmonize with the design of the entry at the corner of Broadway and 21st Street and are based on photographs of the building's original design; and

WHEREAS, The proposed glass entranceway will be placed back within the archway to improve egress, comply with ADA and energy code requirements as well as provide less obtrusive mechanical air intake and exhaust for the lobby and the adjacent commercial retail space without significantly affecting the building's façade; and

WHEREAS, These changes will create a more visually open and historically and architecturally-appropriate entranceway; and

WHEREAS, The Trust for Architectural Easements, which holds a Conservation Deed of Easement, has reviewed the design and does not object to the alterations to the property; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has agreed to balance the light emanating from the new lobby after dusk so that it does not imbalance the view from the street; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed renovation at 915 Broadway.

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1560 Broadway (bet. 46th and 47th Streets), Embassy Theater, application for modification and restoration

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, July 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The owners of 1560 Broadway (bet. 46th and 47th Streets), have filed an application with LPC for modification and restoration of portions of the Embassy Theater, an Interior Landmark, Designated November 17, 1987, located on the first floor of the building; and

WHEREAS, The Embassy Theatre, located on the East side of Broadway in Times Square, was an experiment by Loew's, Inc., which conceived an elegant and intimate 556-seat theatre that would attract an exclusive high-society audience; and

WHEREAS, The Theater was designed by Thomas W. Lamb, a prominent architect and designer of over 300 theaters and movie palaces in  20th Century United States,  as well as the Landmarked Paramount Hotel, also in CB5; and

WHEREAS, The Theater was decorated by the Rambusch Studio, an outstanding NYC design and lighting company and the ornate French-inspired interior featured elaborate plasterwork and murals by the Canadian painter, Arthur Crisp; and

WHEREAS, Furthering its salon-like appeal, the Embassy was the first movie house on Broadway to employ a woman manager, the heiress Gloria Gould, and it had the distinction of being operated almost exclusively by women; and

WHEREAS, Beginning with its gala opening on August 26, 1925, the Embassy was a reserved-seat showcase for some of the major MGM releases; and

WHEREAS, After four years, Loew's took over the nearby Mayfair and Criterion theatres, and the Embassy was acquired by Guild Enterprises on November 1, 1929; and

WHEREAS, The Embassy reopened as the first theater in the United States to have an all-newsreel format; and

WHEREAS, In 1949, when the appeal of old-style theatrical newsreels and screen magazines waned with the onset of television news, and with its small audience shrinking, the Embassy once again became a first-run movie theatrer, showing feature films from Hollywood and the occasional foreign film; and

WHEREAS, After the Embassy closed in 1997, the theatre was renovated and reopened in 1998 as the Times Square Visitors Center with most of its interior features still intact; and

WHEREAS, The current owners propose major changes to this remarkable space to capitalize on the potential for retail leasing in the lower level of the building, including an intrusive escalator in the outer lobby to provide access to the basement, and reconfiguring the inner lobby and rear wall of the theater; and

WHEREAS, While some of the proposed modifications and renovations are not deemed objectionable, the overall effect of the plan would significantly alter the character of the landmarked Interior and is not deemed warranted when there are alternative, undesignated locations in the building for providing basement access; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends Denial of the Application for 1560 Broadway (bet. 46th and 47th Streets), for modification and restoration of the Embassy Theater.

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June 2013

Request to New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission for Evaluation to Designate The Bancroft Building 3-7 West 29th Street as an Individual Landmark

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 13, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 41 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Bancroft Building at 3-7 West 29th Street, located between Fifth Avenue and Broadway, is a 10 story commercial loft building of Ruskinian Gothic-inspired style, designed by the renowned and prolific architect, Robert Henderson Robertson, constructed in 1896 for woolen importer Edward H. Van Ingen; and

WHEREAS, The Bancroft Building's ornate and unusual façade is constructed in layers of hand carved limestone, terracotta, and brick masonry, and these 19th Century architectural details remain greatly intact; and

WHEREAS, An early and longtime tenant of The Bancroft Building was The Camera Club of New York, whose principal, Alfred Stieglitz was instrumental in the acceptance of photography as an art form alongside painting and sculpture; and

WHEREAS, Having a prestigious reputation, The Camera Club was often seen as a venue for introducing new advances and techniques in the photographic sphere, including the autochrome process (an early form of color photography), X-Ray photography, and early motion pictures, among others; and

WHEREAS, An application requesting evaluation to designate The Bancroft Building at 3-7 West 29th Street as an Individual Landmark has been filed with the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission by Concerned Citizens of Gilsey House, and this application is supported by the Historic Districts Council and the Victorian Society; and

WHEREAS, Although there are two individual landmarks on the north side West 29th Street between Fifth Avenue and Broadway – Marble Collegiate Church at the east and Gilsey House at the west – The Bancroft Building is just outside of the boundaries of the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Robert Henderson Robertson was highly regarded American Architect of the late 19th and early 20th Century, several of his works, such as the Park Row Building, the American Tract Society Building, and the Lincoln Building have been designated as New York City Landmarks; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five requests an evaluation by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission of the potential designation of The Bancroft Building at 3-7 West 29th Streetas an Individual Landmark.

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7 West 22nd Street (btw. 5th Avenue and Avenue of the Americas) - application for changes to lobby entrance to comply with ADA regulations

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 13, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 41 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 7 West 22nd Street (btw. 5th Avenue and Avenue of the Americas)  is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District and is a ten story commercial building, constructed in 1901, whose owners have applied to LPC to renovate the circa 1980's entries and to install a new entrance ramp for ADA compliance; and

WHEREAS, The building is known as the Spinning Wheel Building and the proposed scope of work will include:

1.      New lobby mahogany and glass doors at the main entrance and at the retail store entry to match the adjacent finish

2.      Painting of existing exterior metal work

3.      New granite ADA compliant ramp addition 3 ft. wide, 6 ft. long, leading to a 3 ft. wide platform, with iron handrails, in front of the lobby entry

4.      Standpipe relocation from existing position to new placement above the ramp

5.      Exterior louver to be installed above service entrance within the existing opening; and

WHEREAS, The design of the renovations is deemed generally acceptable, CB5 recommends that the owners improve the proposed changes by:

1.      Using arched wood frames for the lobby entrance doors at 7 West 22nd Street to match the retail entry doors at 5 West 22nd Street

2.      Having uniform interior painted glass window signage; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends that LPC Approves a C of A for 7 West 22nd Street (btw. 5th Avenue and Avenue of the Americas) in accordance with the Plans and Specifications presented to CB5.

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Proposed Request to New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission for Consideration of Evaluation to Designate 11 West 29th Street as an Individual Landmark

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 13, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 23 in favor; 18 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 11 West 29th Street, located between Fifth Avenue and Broadway, is a five story brownstone townhouse of Italianate style, initially designed as a private residence for a wealthy family, and constructed in 1859 for George Greer; and

WHEREAS, 11 West 29th Street has retained a high level of architectural detailing, including the original cornice; and

WHEREAS, In the subsequent decades as the prosperous residents of this neighborhood began to move further north in Manhattan, the usage of 11 West 29th Street was adapted for commercial usage, and the American Geographical Society first made its home here in 1879; and

WHEREAS, In 1900, the façade, encompassing the English basement and the two floors above, was converted for silk-stocking commerce then prevalent in this neighborhood, with show windows and a cast iron storefront designed by the prominent architect John Butler Snook; and

WHEREAS, An Application requesting evaluation to designate 11 West 29th Street as an individual landmark has been filed with the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission by Concerned Citizens of Gilsey House, and this application is supported by the Historic Districts Council and the Victorian Society; and

WHEREAS, Although there are two individual landmarks on the north side West 29th Street between Fifth Avenue and Broadway – Marble Collegiate Church at the east and Gilsey House at the west – 11 West 29th Street is just outside of the boundaries of the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five believes that a part of the historic fabric of the building's 1859 construction as well as the 1900 cast iron storefront remains intact, and views that these varying building elements display the evolution of this neighborhood; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five requests an evaluation by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission of the potential designation of 11 West 29th Street as an Individual Landmark.

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Proposed Request to New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission for Evaluation to Consider Designation of 13-15 West 29th Street as an Individual Landmark

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 13, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 23 in favor; 18 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 13-15 West 29th Street, located between Fifth Avenue and Broadway, are two five story brownstone townhouses of Italianate style, initially each designed as a private residence for a wealthy family, and constructed in 1859 for George Greer; and

WHEREAS, 13-15 West 29th Street, now combined as one building, has retained a high level of architectural detailing, including the original cornices; and

WHEREAS, In the subsequent decades, as the prosperous residents of this neighborhood began to move further north in Manhattan, the usage of 13-15 West 29th Street was adapted for commercial usage; and

WHEREAS, In 1900, the façades, encompassing the English basements and the two floors above, were combined and converted for silk-stocking commerce then prevalent in this neighborhood, with show windows and a cast iron storefront designed by the prominent architect John Butler Snook; and

WHEREAS, An early resident of 13 West 29th Street was the American-born operatic tenor John Haley Augustin Chatterton, famous as the boy soprano under the name Johnny Holman, and then later known later by his professional name Don Giovanni Perugini; and

WHEREAS, In the 1920's, 13 West 29th Street served as the headquarters for the Woodcraft League of America, a predecessor to and inspiration for the British Boy Scouts organization; and

WHEREAS, An Application requesting evaluation to designate 13-15 West 29th Street as an individual landmark has been filed with the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission by Concerned Citizens of Gilsey House, and this application is supported by the Historic Districts Council and the Victorian Society; and

WHEREAS, Although there are two individual landmarks on the north side West 29th Street between Fifth Avenue and Broadway – Marble Collegiate Church at the east and Gilsey House at the west – 13-15 West 29th Street is just outside of the boundaries of the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five believes that a part of the historic fabric of the buildings' 1859 construction as well as the 1900 cast iron storefront remains intact, and views that these varying building elements display the evolution of this neighborhood; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five requests an evaluation by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission of the potential designation of 13-15 West 29th Street as an individual landmark.

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75 Rockefeller Plaza (btw. Rockefeller Plaza and Avenue of the Americas) - Modifications to the ground-floor infill on West 51st and 52nd Street elevations, installation of new planters, paving, etc.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 13, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 41 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 75 Rockefeller Plaza is part of Landmarked Rockefeller Center, an Art-Deco style commercial, office and entertainment complex of 19 commercial buildings, covering 22 acres (89,000 m2) between West 48th and 51st Streets built by the Rockefeller Family; and

WHEREAS, 75 Rockefeller Plaza was designed by Robert Carson and Earl Lundin with Wallace K. Harrison as consulting architect, built in 1946 as headquarters for Standard Oil Company and originally named as the Esso Building; and

WHEREAS, This 33 story building was constructed some 15 years after the rest of the complex, primarily due to the ties between the Rockefeller Family and Standard Oil, on a site that at one time was intended to be a continuation of Rockefeller Plaza northward; and

WHEREAS, The building, located at the northerly end of Rockefeller Plaza, has 100 ft. frontage on West 51st Street and 275 ft. frontage on West 52nd Street and was originally intended to have an interior corridor to provide a continuation for pedestrian access through the block; and

WHEREAS, This corridor, which once housed the largest Schrafft's Restaurant, has fallen into disuse, other parts of the building have been neglected over time and maintenance has not been kept up in comparison to the rest of Rockefeller Center which is under separate ownership; and

WHEREAS, The building has been net leased to Time Warner as its headquarters until 2014, with the building now subleased to other tenants who will all vacate the premises at that time, giving its new owners the opportunity to repair, upgrade and modernize various elements of the building; and

WHEREAS, In early 2013 the investment and operating company, RXR Realty, entered into a 99-year lease for this Landmark retail and office building and has applied to LPC for modifications to the ground-floor infill on the West 51st and 52nd Street elevations, installation of new planters, paving, and a railing on the 2nd floor set-back terraces above the West 51st and 52nd Street elevations; and

WHEREAS, The scope of work will include:

1.      West 51st Street Facade: Moving the main entrance to the west side of the building; moving the 75 Rockefeller Center signage to the new main entrance; Retail glass storefront will be added to the bronze concave plaque; Retail signage to be added above a horizontal trim element; Mullions to be replaced; Glass to be replaced at the second storefront; Terrace landscaping will be improved; Facade limestone and granite will be cleaned; Aluminum spandrels to be cleaned; Windows will be replaced to improve performance

2.      West 52nd Street Facade: Main entrance to be moved to the west side; Canopy and setback will be moved toward the west; New entrance with access to the podium lift will be added; mullions and storefront glass will be replaced; existing canopy will be removed and the green marble will be cleaned; Existing loading dock door will be replaced with a new steel rolling door; Terrace Landscaping will be improved; Existing granite will be cleaned; flags will be relocated toward the west to be centered on the new entrance location; Existing signage plaque to be removed and Deer Isle Granite to be restored

3.      Set-back Terraces above the West 51st and 52nd Street elevations: New planters; Granite pavers to replace existing gravel; New railing 3' 6" in height; and

WHEREAS, The relocation of the entrance doors to the west will align both streets' building entrances to a new pedestrian corridor going through the block which will have a new skylight to make the building's non-designated interior more conducive to pedestrian and retail activity; and

WHEREAS, The proposed modifications will constitute a vast improvement over the existing condition and are intended to bring this property into line with the other parts of the Rockefeller Center complex; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of a Certificate of Appropriateness for 75 Rockefeller Plaza (btw. Rockefeller Plaza and Avenue of the Americas) for modifications to the ground-floor infill on West 51st and 52nd Street elevations, installation of new planters, paving, and a railing on the 2nd floor set-back terraces above the West 51st and 52nd Street elevations.

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114 Fifth Avenue (btw. 16th and 17th streets) - modifications to ground-floor openings on the Fifth Avenue and West 17th Street elevations, construction of rooftop bulkheads, and installation of mechanical equipment

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 13, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 41 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 114 Fifth Avenue (S/W corner of West 17th Street) is an 18 story commercial and retail building, designed by Maynicke & Franke, constructed in 1909, known as the Merchants' Exchange Building and is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and 

WHEREAS, The owners have applied to LPC for approval of modifications to ground-floor openings on the Fifth Avenue and West 17th Street elevations, construction of rooftop bulkheads, removal of an exterior fire stair and installation of mechanical equipment on the rooftop; and

WHEREAS, The owners propose changing the non- historic metal and glass entrance doors and to create a new steel and glass secondary entry door at what is now the service entrance to the building on West 17th Street; additionally, the proposal would provide for an additional retail store entrance in one of the bays on West 17th Street in the event that future tenancy required such an entry; and

WHEREAS, The proposal includes a 5 ft. wide,  10 in. high canopy projecting over the new secondary entrance which is not historically justified and deemed inappropriate by CB 5; and

WHEREAS, The owners propose removing an existing exterior fire stair at the rear of the building which removal will not be detrimental to the building's appearance; and

WHEREAS, The modifications include construction of rooftop bulkheads, extending an elevator's mechanical room height to provide to provide rooftop elevator access, a new cooling tower and other rooftop mechanical equipment room changes required for LEED certification, all of which are minimally visible from the public way as indicated in photographs of rooftop mockups, therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Certificate of Appropriateness for 114 Fifth Avenue (btw. 16th and 17th Streets) for modifications to ground-floor openings on the Fifth Avenue and West 17th Street elevations, construction of rooftop bulkheads, and installation of mechanical equipment in accordance with the Plans and Specifications presented to CB5 with the exception of the proposed canopy on West 17th Street which is deemed historically inappropriate.

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149 5th Avenue (btw. East 21st and East 22nd Streets) - Application to replace chimney extension

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, June 13, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 41 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 149 5th Avenue (btw. East 21st and East 22nd Streets) is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District and is adjacent to a four story building at 927 Broadway which has a chimney extension running eleven stories high along the north wall of 149 5th Avenue; and

WHEREAS, This brick and masonry chimney extension has become badly deteriorated and caused damage to both buildings from water infiltration and condensation; and

WHEREAS, The owners of 149 5th Avenue have requested LPC to approve a new, repositioned, stainless steel chimney extension, to be powder coated and painted a buff color to match the color of the face brick on the north wall of 149 5th Avenue, running further to the rear of 149 5th Avenue, to make it appear less intrusive than the existing chimney extension; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Certificate of Appropriateness for 149 5th Avenue (btw. East 21st and East 22nd Streets) in accordance with the Plans and Specifications presented to CB5.

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May 2013

34 East 32nd Street (bet. Mad. and Park Avenues), St. Louis Hotel, now Hotel Grand Union, proposed designation.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, May 09, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 34 in favor; 2 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 34 East 32nd Street, St. Louis Hotel, now Hotel Grand Union, is one of several distinguished Beaux-Arts style hotels located in the Midtown South area, to take advantage of its proximity to transportation, shopping and entertainment, built in 1903-05, named for the popular Louisiana Purchase Exposition, better known as the St. Louis World's Fair; and

WHEREAS, Its exuberant, articulated architecture and distinctive red brick and stone facade is sits on a heavily rusticated base with projecting bays and prominent brackets; and

WHEREAS, Its ornamentation includes lion's heads and the 9 1/2 story building is crowned by a mansard roof with pedimented dormers and flamboyant copper surrounds; and 

WHEREAS, The building was designed by the architect, Frederick C. Browne, active in New York City at the turn of the last century, who is noted for Hargrave and Colonial Hotels located in the Upper West Side/ Central Park West Historic District; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five requests an Evaluation by LPC for consideration of Landmark Designation for 34 East 32nd Street (bet. Madison and Park Avenues), St. Louis Hotel, now Hotel Grand Union.

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9 West 29th Street (between 5th Avenue and Broadway), proposed request to landmark building.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, May 09, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 30 in favor; 6 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 9 West 29th Street (between 5th Avenue and Broadway), is an 1857 row house with a cast iron front added in 1900-01, designed by the architects, John B. Snook & Sons; and

WHEREAS, Prior to its alteration, it had been used as a clubhouse and hosted meetings of the Bar Association before it moved to its current location; and

WHEREAS, This 4-story neo-Renaissance style loft and retail building is a distinctive representative of this type of design and is deemed worthy of preservation; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five requests an Evaluation by LPC for consideration of Landmark Designation for 9 West 29th Street (between 5th Avenue and Broadway).

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April 2013

242 5th Avenue, Madison Square North Historic District, application for the renovation and restoration of a vacant 5 story building including a rooftop addition and rear yard extension.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 41 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The owners of 242 5th Avenue, between W. 27 and W. 28 Sts., located in the Madison Square North Historic District, have applied to LPC for approval for the renovation and restoration of this vacant 5 story building, including  a rooftop and a rear yard addition; and

WHEREAS, This building's cast iron facade, designed by George Harding, dates back to 1885, featuring a giant triumphant pediment crowning its glass and sheet metal facade; and

WHEREAS, The renovations and additions include 1) raising the roof which will be not be visible behind the existing parapet on the easterly facade; 2) extension of the rear of the building leaving 30 feet of rear yard for the residential tenants for light and air; and 3) construction of a 500 sq. ft. addition on the rooftop at the rear of the building; and 

WHEREAS, The applicant did not ask for CB5 approval for the easterly 5th Avenue facade window and retail storefront renovations, indicating that LPC will address approval of these elements at the staff level; and

WHEREAS, A CB5 inspection of the mock ups revealed that only a small sliver of the rooftop addition will be visible from E. 28 St., so that it would be hardly noticeable from the public way; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 242 5th Avenue (between West 27th and West 28th Streets), Madison Square North Historic District,  for the renovation and restoration of a vacant 5 story building including a rooftop addition, rear yard extension and 500 sq. ft. rooftop addition.

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200 Park Avenue South, Elizabeth Arden "The Red Door", application for alteration to signage and door

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 41 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 200 Park Avenue South, a/k/a 45 East 17th Street (Union Square North), a/k/a The Everett Building, a sixteen-story commercial structure, designed by Goldwin, Starrett and Van Vleck, is an individual New York City Landmark; and

WHEREAS, The 1910-era building is a quintessential example of the new commercial style of architecture known as the Chicago School, and its design was considered innovative when it was featured in Architectural Record (December 1910); and

WHEREAS, The retail tenant, occupying the store at the corner of Park Avenue South and East 17th Street, Elizabeth Arden "The Red Door," has applied to LPC for approval of signage and a new front door design; and

WHEREAS, The signage will consist of 9 inch brass letters to be set over the transom and the new retail store front door will have discreet red enamel signage, in accordance with specifications set forth by LPC; and

WHEREAS, The proposal compliments the configurations, materials and proportions of the original, historic storefronts; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 200 Park Avenue South at the corner of East 17th Street (Union Square North) for Elizabeth Arden "The Red Door" storefront modifications.

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110 East 17th Street (East 17th Street - Irving Place Historic District) application for the renovation of newels and rails.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, April 11, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 3 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS110 East 17th Street, located in the East 17th Street - Irving Place Historic District, is described in the District  Designation Report as "one of a pair of impressive brownstone-fronted Italianate houses ... (which) ...retains its high stoop with characteristic cast-iron newels and carved brownstone balcony at the parlor story with a cast-iron balustrade."; and

WHEREAS, The building is a four-story and basement row house built circa 1853-54 by Robert C. Voorhies for the original owners, Thomas S. and Mary E. Young and continues to house residential tenants; and

WHEREAS, The owner of the property has applied to LPC for approval to renovate and replace the newels and handrails at the stairway leading to the building entrance due to severe deterioration and the hazardous condition of the ironwork; and

WHEREAS, The newels are in such poor condition that they are now wrapped in blankets to prevent injury and further deterioration; and

WHEREAS, The replacement newels resemble other newels on the same street, but are not replicas of the original historic newels; and

WHEREAS, The stair handrails proposed to be used are not considered appropriate and the applicant has agreed to consider more suitable handrail replacements which would be more compatible to the newels to be installed; and

WHEREAS, The applicant will restore the bottom steps and place the replacement newels on top of the bottom step, which will be repaired, rather than in a cut out of the step; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of 110 East 17th Street (between Park Avenue South and Irving Place), application for the renovation and replacement of newels and handrails with the condition that the owner has agreed to install more suitable handrail replacements than those shown in the design presented to CB5.

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March 2013

Request for Evaluation for Proposed Interior Designation Rose Reading Room - New York Public Library

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, New York Public Library, (NYPL) Central Building, 476 Fifth Avenue, between West 40th and West 42nd Streets, is an iconic individual New York City Landmark, famous throughout the world, designed in 1897 in a competition won by the architectural firm Carrere & Hastings and completed in 1911; and

WHEREAS, The Exterior of the majestic Beaux-Arts building was Designated a New York City Landmark January 11, 1967 and  the Main Lobby , North and South Staircases, 1st to 3rd Floor, and Central Hall on the 3rd Floor were Designated  Interior Landmarks November 12, 1974; and

WHEREAS, The Rose Reading Room, on the third floor of the Library (Room 315), is one of the great library spaces in the world, comparable to other distinguished spaces such as Bibliotheque St. Genevieve in Paris, Wren's Trinity Library in Cambridge, England  and the Austrian National Library in Vienna, renowned internationally for its grandeur and elegance; and

WHEREAS, The Room is a majestic public space, roughly the length of two city blocks,  almost equal in size to a football field, weaving together Old World architectural elegance with modern technology; and

WHEREAS, Its dimensions are 78' wide x 297' long x 51'2" high, making it one of the largest rooms in the nation without a dome, interior columns or steel-reinforced walls to support the ceiling; and

WHEREAS, This classical masterpiece was designed by John Merven Carrere and Thomas Hastings, architects of the Library, following the concepts of its original librarian, John Shaw Billings who insisted that the patrons ascend to the third floor in order to get natural light from two directions; and

WHEREAS, The Room has nine bays of arched windows, each measuring 14' 9" by 17' 7", dividing the walls on the east and west sides of the Room, with a high cornice running continuously around the Room, containing other features including book shelves, accessed via a long balcony, and murals on the ceiling; and

WHEREAS, The Room's upper walls are masonry (Caen stone - plaster, designed to resemble stone block) giving an appearance similar to the exterior of the building, but the Room is given warmth and comfort from the extensive use of wood; and 

WHEREAS, The central delivery desk, surmounted by clocks, has intricately carved Doric pediments and details like carved dolphins that enliven the materials, with wood stained a golden, dark brown that harmonizes with the warm limestone-tinted plaster on the walls above, punctuated by many gilded rosettes, coffers and moldings in the ceiling above; and

WHEREAS, The ceiling is a tour de force of classical design, decoratively painted plaster using gold and copper leaf, echoing the design of Renaissance and Baroque ceilings with panels and coffers subdivided by cartouches and and other classical medallions, including rinceaux, swags, egg and dart moldings, consoles and rosettes; and

WHEREAS, The restored ceiling contains recessed murals painted on canvas (inspired by the original paintings on plaster which had badly deteriorated at the time of the restoration in 1968), giving the impression of looking through the ceiling up to the vibrant blue sky with billowing clouds; and 

WHEREAS, The murals, based on the original ceiling paintings,  were executed by EverGreene Architectural Arts, under the supervision of Davis, Brody, Bond, the restoration architects and are deemed appropriate to the original ceiling design; and

WHEREAS, The floors are covered in red Welsh quarry tile surrounded by Hauteville marble from France; and

WHEREAS, Each desk in the room stands on a pedestals bearing the library's seal; there are special lecterns for holding large reference materials and a carved and gilded throne-like bench, atop a marble base, for patrons waiting for materials to use, facing the delivery desk; and

WHEREAS, The Room takes on a golden glow when lit from two ranks of chandeliers when natural light dims in the evening; and

WHEREAS, Each light fixture has four rows of bulbs decorated with acanthus leaf rings and flowers, with faces of satyrs behind the leaves, peering down on the patrons below; and  

WHEREAS, These decorative flourishes throughout the Room make for one of the City's richest and most elegant interiors, at the same time, the Room is inviting, warm and democratic, a symbol of aspiration, not elitism, encouraging advancement, urging every citizen to become better educated and more informed about the world; and

WHEREAS, The seating consists of 42  American white oak tables on marble bases with 22' x 4', tops weigh over 600 lbs. each, seating up to 16 readers (total of 624 reader seats; before renovation, only 490 reader seats); and

WHEREAS, Library patrons can read or study at these long tables lit by elegant bronze lamps; and

WHEREAS, Since the Room's opening day on May 23, 1911, vast numbers of people have utilized the main reading room, including literary figures such as Norman Mailer, Barbara Tuchman, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Elizabeth Bishop, E. L. Doctorow, and Alfred Kazin, all of whom have cited the division containing this Room as a major resource for their work; and 

WHEREAS, The Room's was officially named "The Deborah, Jonathan F. P., Samuel Priest, and Adam R. Rose Main Reading Room of the NY Public Library," as a result of a $15 million gift for the restoration of the Room, completed in 1968, from Library trustee Sandra Priest Rose and Frederick Phineas Rose, who had the Library rename the Room in honor of their children; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five submits a Request for Evaluation to the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission for the Designation of the Rose Reading Room, 476 Fifth Avenue, between West 40th and West 42nd Streets, as an Interior Landmark.

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1780 Broadway, known as the B.F. Goodrich Building, application for construction of new partial cellar level and partial removal, stabilization and reconstruction of the rear of the building, including east and north secondary façades

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 1780 Broadway, is a 12 story building located between West 57th and West 58th Streets, which was designed by Howard Van Doren Shaw and constructed in 1909 for the B.F. Goodrich Company; and

WHEREAS, Clad with mostly red brick and limestone, the west façade wall facing Broadway is "distinguished by abstract, stylized ornament that suggests the influence of Elizabethan and Jacobean sources, the English Arts and Crafts movement and the Vienna Secession"; and

WHEREAS, The north and east secondary façades are not constructed with the same caliber of stylized ornament that distinguishes the west façade, and these had been significantly damaged by a fire that began at 230 West 58th Street on January 2, 1948, and had subsequently been re-clad with newer masonry and windows; and

WHEREAS, Subsequent to B.F. Goodrich Company's eighteen years of occupancy, 1780 Broadway has had several owners, and was acquired by Extell Development Corporation in 2006; and on November 10, 2009, the Landmarks Preservation Commission designated the B.F. Goodrich Company Building at 1780 Broadway as an individual landmark; and

WHEREAS, Extell Development Corporation has filed an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for the proposed removal and reconstruction two secondary façades, specifically:

  • The north wall facing West 58th Street
  • The east wall facing Seventh Avenue; and

WHEREAS, This work is proposed in order to safeguard the structural integrity of 1780 Broadway while excavating an adjacent development site and constructing new below ground levels at the rear of the landmark building; and

WHEREAS, The secondary façade facing north toward West 58th Street is constructed of ordinary red brick with some limestone banding and copings, with approximately 31'-2-/18" that may be publically viewable, and the secondary façade facing east toward Seventh Avenue is constructed of ordinary beige brick, which is minimally visible and has mostly been obscured by neighboring buildings; and

WHEREAS, The base of an adjacent new as of right building will envelope the entire east façade and approximately 11'-8" of the north façade of 1780 Broadway; and

WHERAS, Visible historic volume will be reconstructed on the north façade in red brick to match the existing, and salvaged limestone banding and copings, and new three over three sash windows which match the historic configuration; and

WHEREAS, In order to excavate in a manner that is most protective of the landmark B.F. Goodrich Company Building at 1780 Broadway, the applicant has consulted with experts which include Timothy Lynch of the Department of Buildings, and senior Landmarks Preservation Commission staff members Sarah Carroll and Mark Silberman, and the resulting consensus is that a portion of the rear of the landmark should be removed and partially reconstructed; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a Certificate of Appropriateness for the proposed removal and reconstruction two secondary façades of 1780 Broadway.

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229 West 43rd Street b/t 7-8th Avenue, application for signage on the 43rd Street façade of the former New York Times Building.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 229 West 43rd Street, originally the Times Annex, and headquarters of the New York Times Newspaper, originally built in 1912-13 to the design of Architects Buchman & Fox, was subsequently renovated and expanded twice before 1932 and the structure was Designated as an Individual  Landmark by NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission in March of 2001; and

WHEREAS, The building's main feature is an 11 story tower that rises above a richly detailed stone and masonry street wall that stretches for over 300 feet along the north side of West 43rd Street, the largest non theatre building in the area, which it has long dominated, giving physical substance to its name, Times Square; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is proposing a retail signage plan for the ground and second floors, consisting of two types of signage: 

1. Transom signage at nine locations incorporated into the retail store front. This signage would be flush with the existing storefront consisting of lettering of less than 8" in height. The letters would be bronze pin mounted with a ¼" continuous light reveal. These signs would be back lit and match in material and appearance the existing storefront;

2.  Four banner signs projecting from the 2nd floor façade, two on either side of the main building entrance, one for each retail tenant. The banners would project 3'4" from the face of the building and be 2'-3" in width. Custom bronze armatures would be used to support the banners. The armatures will be finished to match the existing light sconces and the storefront below. The armatures will also conceal lighting for the banner signs in a manner that makes the lighting unobtrusive; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant presented drawings and renderings of the proposal and illustrated the intent as well as the context and relevant view corridors that clearly showed the design intent of the signage plan; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the new retail façade signage plan for 229 West 43rd Street, the former New York Times building.

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202 5th Avenue, Application for interior and exterior renovation

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 202 5th Avenue, located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, was built in 1919 by Buchman & Kahn and was known at its opening as the Thomas Cusack Building; and

WHEREAS, It is a six-story building constructed of load-bearing brick with terracotta facing; and

WHEREAS, The building is located just north of Worth Square with frontages on Broadway and 5th Avenue with a long frontage on East 25th Street; and

WHEREAS, The 25th Street frontage was treated from its opening as a promotional billboard that was lit after dark and included signage with the firm's name and services as well as in a roof-top sign; and

WHEREAS, The ground floor has been significantly changed over the decades, including the reconfiguration and redesign of the windows followed by the removal of the windows and is currently configured with display windows and a granite façade; and

WHEREAS, While the upper floors remain essentially intact, changes that have been made include the removal in 1940 of the vertical rows of outer windows on the 5th Avenue façade and the revision of the middle windows on that façade; and

WHEREAS, The building was acquired in 2012 by Porcelanosa, a large Spanish tile, flooring and kitchen fixture manufacturer and distributor which engaged the services of the esteemed architect, Sir Norman Foster, and his firm, to prepare the renovation plans for the building; and

WHEREAS, The Application includes a reconstruction of the South parapet and new signage without any change to the existing parapet height; and

WHEREAS, Damaged terracotta tiles and cornices will be repaired; and

WHEREAS, The historic window openings on the south façade will be restored as in the original building; and

WHEREAS, The existing window openings will be given new windows and glass; and

WHEREAS, The proposed ground floor re-configuration and finishes more directly connect with the historic upper floors and the architectural direction of the building overall; and

WHEREAS, The exterior lighting plan reflects the original building's use and has been designed to not intrude visually on the neighborhood; and

WHEREAS, The plan to move the main entrance to 5th Avenue from 25th Street has historic precedents in the building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has agreed to revise the marquee in the submitted design in terms of size and look so as not to intrude on the view south towards the Flatiron Building and to consider other styles and finishes more appropriate to the history of the building and its location; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Except for the proposed 5th Avenue marquee which is not approved, Community Board Five recommends approval of the balance of the proposed renovations at 202 5th Avenue

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101 East 15th Street – Daryl Roth Theatre, (Union Square Savings Bank) - Application for installation of light fixtures at windows and cornices for architectural lighting of the facade.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 20 Union Square East, originally the Institution for the Savings of Merchants' Clerks, later Union Square Savings Bank, then American Savings Bank, was built in 1905-07 to the designs of Henry Bacon, and was designated an individual NYC Landmark in February 1996; and

WHEREAS, The building's main feature is the classic Corinthian colonnade, including four columns, which was designed by Bacon whose best known work is the Lincoln Memorial; and

WHEREAS, The current occupant of the building, The Daryl Roth Theatre, proposes the addition of LED up-lighting at each of five windows facing 15th street, at the entrance portico on Union Square East, along the entire length of the cornice line to illuminate the parapet; all of these fixtures would be concealed from view at street level; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has also proposed to install down-lights along the length of both facades, mounted to a continuous armature attached to the parapet above the cornice line, the connection of this armature to be concealed from street level view; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant presented photographs of lighting mock ups that showed both the up-lighting and the down-lighting to demonstrate the effect intended by the installation and its effect on neighboring properties; and  

WHEREAS, The design and location of the proposed fixtures was such, that though effective light levels were created, the area of the lighting was very controlled so as to focus the lighting on the building façade and not at neighboring properties; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the new architectural lighting for the Daryl Roth Theatre at 101 East 15th Street.

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46 West 22nd Street (Ladies' Mile Historic District) Application to add rear extension, change elevation, add wood deck on the roof and replace fire escape

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 46 West 22nd Street, between 5th Ave. and Ave. of the Americas, is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District and is a five story mixed use retail and residential building whose owner has applied to NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission for approval of building renovations, primarily a nine foot rear yard addition to floors 2, 3, 4 and 5 to extend the building and provide additional residential living space; and

WHEREAS, The owner also will remove the existing fire escape at the rear of the building and relocate the fire escape at what will be the new rear facade of the building; and

WHEREAS, The owner will add a small wooden deck, with a 42 inch high railing for safety purposes, on the rear rooftop of the new addition and the owner will replace all the rear windows of the building with new windows; and

WHEREAS, None of these renovations and additions will be visible from the street and all the changes are considered improvements to the property; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to LPC to add a rear extension, change the elevation, add a wood deck on the roof and replace the fire escape and rear windows at 46 West 22nd Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District

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5 East 20th Street - Application for installation of a banner on the front facade

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, March 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 26 in favor; 7 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 5 East 20th Street, between Broadway and Fifth Avenue, is a three story building located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, built in 1910 and has a tenant in the ground floor retail store, L A Burdick Handmade Chocolates, which has applied to NYC Landmarks Preservation commission for approval of a banner on the front facade measuring 8 ft. long x 2 ft. wide; and

WHEREAS, The Historic District Guidelines require LPC approval for signage other than bracket signs; and 

WHEREAS, The design and dimensions of the proposed signage appears to be reasonable and harmonious for the Historic District; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the banner sign on the front facade at 5 East 20th Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District.

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February 2013

230 Park Avenue, (the former Helmsley Building and the former New York Central Building) application for East and West Helmsley Walks restoration

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, February 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 27 in favor; 4 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 230 Park Avenue (between East 45th and East 46th Streets), formerly known as the New York Central Building, then known as the New York General Building, more recently known as the Helmsley Building, has been an individual NYC Landmark since its designation March 31, 1987, designed by Warren and Wetmore as part of the complex of buildings surrounding Grand Central Station, also designed by these same architects; and

WHEREAS, Built in 1929 as the luxurious headquarters for the New York Central Railroad, 230 Park Avenue is a 34-story office building strategically straddling Park Avenue at East 46th Street to East 45th Street, offering a premier location as a direct connection to Grand Central Terminal; and

WHEREAS, The East and West Helmsley Walks are two public walkways through the building between East 45th and 46th Streets, adjacent to the tunnels for the Park Avenue viaduct ramps; and

WHEREAS, The owners of the building are requesting approval of a restoration of the East and West Helmsley Walks; and

WHEREAS, This resolution addresses the following six elements of the application:

·         Adding one decorative pendant light, approximately 7feet high with 2 ft, 10 inch diameter, at the northern end of each walkway (2 pendant lights total);

·         Providing a ceiling infill (lowering the ceilings by approximately 8-9 inches) with decorative moldings and lighting upgrade (21 new fixtures in each walkway, 42 total) at the southern end of the walkways;

·         Unifying the appearance of a total of six egress doors, frames and hardware by replicating the original, historic door design;

·         Replacing an existing standard aluminum louver with a decorative bronze louver similar to others existing in the walkways;

·         Improving lighting in the higher ceiling main portion of the walkways with more energy efficient light fixtures, which will provide significantly more light in the walkways without changing the visual appearance of these fixtures; and

·         Adding bronze relief medallions (a replication of the New York Central's logo which can be seen in the building's landmarked interior lobby and the north façade above the arched entryways to the vehicular tunnels) in the concrete at the north and south end of each walkway (4 medallions total); and

WHEREAS, The application also contains a seventh element, the installation of LCD screens, which is addressed by Community Board Five in a separate resolution; and

WHEREAS, The owners will also clean the stone walls and concrete floors and make repairs throughout the walkways; and

WHEREAS, The materials and finishes to be used in the restoration would mimic the original historic elements present in the walkways and adjacent spaces in order to create unity and consistency; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds the above six elements of the restoration to be appropriate for and harmonious with the historic fabric of the building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the above six elements of the restoration of the East and West Helmsley Walks at 230 Park Avenue.

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230 Park Avenue, (the former Helmsley Building and the former New York Central Building) application for installation of LCD screens in the East and West Helmsley Walks

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, February 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 19 in favor; 13 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 230 Park Avenue (between East 45th and East 46th Streets), formerly known as the New York Central Building, then known as the New York General Building, more recently known as the Helmsley Building, has been an individual NYC Landmark since its designation March 31, 1987, designed by Warren and Wetmore as part of the complex of buildings surrounding Grand Central Station, also designed by these same architects; and

WHEREAS, Built in 1929 as the luxurious headquarters for the New York Central Railroad, 230 Park Avenue is a 34-story office building strategically straddling Park Avenue at East 46th Street to East 45th Street, offering a premier location as a direct connection to Grand Central Terminal; and

WHEREAS, The East and West Helmsley Walks are two public walkways through the building between East 45th and 46th Streets, adjacent to the tunnels for the Park Avenue viaduct ramps; and

WHEREAS, The owners of the building are requesting approval of the installation of one frameless wall mounted LCD screen at the southern end of each walkway; and

WHEREAS, The proposed LCD screens are part of an application for restoration of the East and West Helmsley Walks, the other elements of which are addressed by Community Board Five in a separate resolution; and

WHEREAS, The dimensions of the LCD screens set forth in the application are 12 feet by 3.5 feet, which represents the maximum possible size of the screens, although the applicant represented that the actual LCD screens that would be installed would likely be smaller than the proposed dimensions; and

WHEREAS, Although photographs on file with the Landmarks Preservation Commission from the time of designation show large illuminated advertising screens in the same locations, CB5 does not find that these LCD screens are in keeping with the historical character of the space or appropriate to the landmark; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the installation of LCD screens in the East and West Helmsley Walks at 230 Park Avenue.

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126-128 Fifth Avenue Application for Replacement of Storefront and Signage

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, February 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 31 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 126-128 Fifth Avenue is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District and has applied to LPC for approval of the replacement of portions of the ground floor storefront and signage; and

WHEREAS, This building was designed by Robert Maynicke and completed in 1906; and

WHEREAS, The Application is to install new storefront infill, doors and signage; and

WHEREAS, Non-historic infill at the store entry on Fifth Avenue will be replaced; and

WHEREAS, A new swing door and a new revolving door will be installed at the store entry on Fifth Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The existing "Gap" signage will be replaced with new, bold lettered, protruding, illuminated "Athleta" signage in two locations (front and 18th Street side of building); and

WHEREAS, The new signage is much larger and more distracting than the existing signage, but similar to other signage in the Historic District previously approved by LPC; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to install new storefront infill, doors and signage at 126-128 Fifth Avenue with a recommendation that the Applicant explore other less distracting alternatives for the new signage.

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108 5th Avenue, Application to Replace Windows and Mechanical Equipment

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, February 14, 2013, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 31 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 105 5th Avenue, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, is a 20-story apartment building constructed about 1985 on the southwest corner of 5th Avenue and West 16th Street, and

WHEREAS, The LPC Designation Report states that the building and a neighboring building as such "do not conform to the general character of the streetscape; however, they are surrounded by other buildings that are characteristic types within the district.", and

WHEREAS, This building can be classified as a "Non-Contributing Building" within the Historic District, and

WHEREAS, The applicant/owner of Apartment 19B is seeking to replace windows, balcony doors, and thru-wall A/C-heating units that will change the overall fenestration and replace the thru-wall units with free standing condenser/compressor units, and

WHEREAS, The original windows are deteriorated beyond the point of repair and the mechanical units do not meet current energy-efficiency standards and need to be updated, and

WHEREAS, The new windows and doors will have nearly the same profile and the same color as the existing, and

WHEREAS, The 19th floor is one of several upper floors that has a "mansard-like" cladding that obscures the visibility of the balconies and windows from the street, and

WHEREAS, Other balconies in the building house similar mechanical units, and

WHEREAS, the condenser units will be placed against balcony wall and below the balcony railing and therefore will be minimally visible and will not detract from the visual harmony within the District; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to replace windows and mechanical equipment at Apartment 19B, 108 5th Avenue.

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January 2013

476 Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street (New York Public Library) - Proposed renovation of the Central Library Building

December 2012

1501 Broadway, Paramount Building, application for the installation of two marquees with LED lighting, a secondary Marquee, and new windows on the 9th floor on 43rd Street

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Paramount Building, located at 1501 Broadway in Times Square and granted landmark status in 1985, was built in 1926-27, and made a significant contribution to the development of the Broadway theater district; and

WHEREAS, The building was designed by the firm of Rapp & Rapp, who were among the best-known and most prolific designers of elaborate movie theaters in the 1920s; and

WHEREAS, The Paramount Building first served as the Eastern headquarters for the Famous Players-Lasky Corporation, the forerunner of Paramount Pictures; and

WHEREAS, The building's distinctive massing is exemplary of the innovative setback skyscraper type of the 1920s; and

WHEREAS, 1501 Broadway is a thirty-three story building with a clock tower and was the tallest structure on Broadway north of the Woolworth Building at the time of its completion; and

WHEREAS, The changes in use over time resulted in the closing of the original Paramount Theater entrance on 43rd Street and the removal of the marquee on that street and additional alterations to that facade; and

WHEREAS, The application is for the construction of a Marquee on 43rd Street that follows the same details, materials and design as was present in the original Marquee and which matches the current restored Marquee facing Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The application also requests the creation of a secondary Marquee on 43rd Street which is rectangular in design and uses the same finishes and materials as on the renovated Marquee facing Broadway; and

WHEREAS, The application further requests the installation of new windows on the 9th floor facing 43rd Street where the original Paramount Theater was located and with these windows to match the existing windows on 43rd Street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work utilizes historical information and reflects a careful consideration of the original building and restores the 43rd Street design in a manner that has not been present since the closing of the original Paramount Theater in 1964 and the conversion of its space to office use in 1966-1969; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed Marquee and window installations on the 43rd Street side of 1501 Broadway.

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1250 Avenue of the Americas, aka 30 Rockefeller Plaza, Applications for 1) Interior Restorations to the Rainbow Room and 2) Alterations for Replacement of Windows and Doors on the Western End of the 65th Floor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 30 Rockefeller Plaza ("30 Rock") is part of the Landmarked (Designated in 1985) Rockefeller Center, and, in October 2012, the Landmarks Preservation Commission ("LPC") designated the Rainbow Room, on the 65th floor of 30 Rock, as an Interior Landmark; and

WHEREAS, In designating the Rainbow Room, LPC stated that it "has a special character, special historic and aesthetic interest and value as part of the development, heritage and cultural characteristics of New York City;" and

WHEREAS, Rockefeller Center has made an application to LPC for certain restorations and alterations to the Rainbow Room which include the following:

1.      the repair and rehabilitation of historic elements, including the domed ceiling, the dance floor, raised platforms at the perimeter of the room, the railings and the chandeliers and sconces,

2.      making the wall panels around the two window openings in the northeast and southeast corners of the Rainbow Room consistent in size to the other twenty-two windows openings, refinishing wall surfaces with fabric panels, refinishing the ceiling with plaster and installing new carpeting with the exception of new inlay wood across the existing dance floor,

3.      incorporating bronze, wood, and stone elements at the base of the walls and across the front edge of the raised platforms,

4.      removing the non-historic exposed ductwork, vents, and lighting across the ceiling and installing new lighting, sound and HVAC systems discreetly across the ceiling; and

WHEREAS, The primary original architectural elements of the Rainbow Room remain unchanged and intact, such as the double height ceiling, unencumbered by internal supports, a 32-foot diameter circular revolving dance floor, over which is a 30-foot circular dome, stepped terraces with crystal balustrades, crystal chandeliers, and the 24-foot high floor to ceiling windows; and

WHEREAS, The requested restorations and alterations are deemed appropriate and maintain the significant elements of the Rainbow Room; and

WHEREAS, Rockefeller Center has also made application to modify the windows and doors of the western end of the 65th floor of 30 Rock, by:

1.      installing glass panels similar to those on the 67th and 69th floors of 30 Rock on the west setback terrace,

2.      enlarging the windows to the height of the original openings, which will align with the bottom of the original cast-aluminum panels on the north, west and south sides of the western room, installing new glazing, and removing limestone from above the existing openings which will either be reused or replaced in-kind at the base of the new openings,

3.      preserving across the south elevation of the floor the original cast-aluminum exterior mullions and removing the secondary mullions from the non-historic windows,

4.      installing new swing doors which will lead to two ADA-compliant ramps to provide access to the set-back terrace; and

WHEREAS, The requested modifications to the windows and doors of the western end of the 65th floor of 30 Rock will not be detectable from the public way; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the applications for interior restorations and alterations to the Rainbow Room and the replacement of windows and doors on the western end of the 65th floor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza.

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350 Fifth Avenue (Empire State Building), Application for proposed renovation of 34th Street East entrance.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Empire State Building, 350 Fifth Avenue, is an individual New York City Landmark, famous throughout the world, with a Designated interior lobby; and

WHEREAS, This Art Deco style office building lobby was designed by Shreve, Lamb and Harmon and built in 1930 -1931, with the lobby walls, floors, and ceiling all "Protected" surfaces; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five approved a Master Plan for lobby renovations and certain other areas of the ground floor of the building in 2007; and

WHEREAS, The owners of the building are requesting approval of a renovation of the eastern most entrance on 34th Street which would:

1.      Enhance the prominence of the 34th Street east entry as the main entrance to the building for office tenants and their guests, in accordance with the intention of the 2007 Master Plan;

2.      Create the building's first fully ADA compliant entrance;

3.      Add to the building's egress capacity by adding two additional exits for egress purposes; and

WHEREAS, The proposed renovation would replace the existing historic double opening consisting of one original revolving door and one set of non-original automatic bi-fold doors with a tri-partite opening consisting of a central revolving door flanked by two sets of balanced doors, one of which would have an automatic operator for ADA compliance; and

WHEREAS, While the current automatic bi-fold doors at this location were installed in the mid-1990s for accessibility purposes, these doors are not fully ADA compliant by today's standards and do not count as an exit for egress purposes; and

WHEREAS, In order to achieve the required 4 foot clearance between the interior and exterior doors for ADA compliance, the exterior wall of the entry would be moved outward within the existing masonry opening approximately 2 feet three inches and would be set back 8 inches from the building line (currently, the exterior entry wall is 2 foot 11 inches back from the building line), while the interior wall will remain in its existing location; and

WHEREAS, Although certain internal and external historic elements would be impacted, this project aims to retain and reuse as much historic material as possible:

1.      The vertical scalloped black granite at the center of the exterior in-fill wall would be removed and stored onsite to allow for the installation of the central revolving door;

2.      The horizontal scalloped black granite above the door openings at the exterior in-fill wall would be removed and reinstalled at the new exterior wall location, or replaced in-kind, if damaged during removal;

3.      The vertical scalloped Breccia Sistina marble at the center of the interior wall would be removed and stored on-site to allow for the installation of the central revolving door;

4.      The horizontal Breccia Sistina marble above the existing interior doors would ideally remain in place during construction or would be removed and reinstalled; however, the applicant is working with ABC Stone to identify appropriate Breccia Sistina slabs in Italy that could be purchased if the stone was damaged during construction; 

5.      The terrazzo, marble and granite flooring and pavers at the entry would be removed and replaced in-kind to match existing materials to align with the new door openings; and

WHEREAS, The new door frames and materials would match the existing historic frame at the revolving door; and

WHEREAS, The applicant represented that while other configurations for the entrance were explored, including maintaining the historic double opening, the tri-partite opening was necessary to achieve the goal of adding to the building's egress capacity while allowing the entry to maintain symmetrical; and

WHEREAS, While the other office entrances on 33rd Street and 34th Street each maintain their historic double openings with two revolving doors, the Fifth Avenue entrance historically and currently has a tri-partite entry with a pair of central swing doors flanked by two revolving doors; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five believes that the proposed renovation respects the historic fabric of the building while addressing significant egress and accessibility concerns; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for proposed renovation of 34th Street East entrance at 350 Fifth Avenue (Empire State Building)

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28 West 23rd Street, application for rooftop mechanical equipment installation.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 28 West 23rd Street, the former Stern's Dry Goods Department Store, now occupied by Home Depot, is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, Over the years the rooftop mechanical systems have become inefficient and require an infrastructural upgrade consisting of the installation of three cooling towers (measuring 36' x 15' x 15') on top of the existing dunnage steel frame; and

WHEREAS, The visibility of these towers, as shown in photographs of mock ups presented to Community Board Five, is deemed minimal from the public way and, then, only from the east of the building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for rooftop mechanical equipment to be installed at 28 West 23rd Street.

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20 Union Square East (East 15th Street), Union Square Savings Bank - Application for Approval of two banner signs on main facade

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, December 13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 25 in favor; 11 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 20 Union Square East, originally the Institution for the Savings of Merchants' Clerks, later Union Square Savings Bank, then American Savings Bank, was built in 1905-07 to the designs of Henry Bacon, and was designated an individual NYC Landmark in February 1996; and

WHEREAS, the building's main feature is the classic Corinthian colonnade, including four columns, which was designed by Bacon whose best known work is the Lincoln Memorial; and

WHEREAS, The current tenant in the building, The Daryl Roth Theatre, proposes the addition of promotional signage consisting of two large banners to be hung between the columns on each side of the main entranceway on the portico facing Union Square East; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has previously placed signage for its theatrical presentations above the portico and on the ramp leading to the front entrance without presenting evidence to CB 5 of LPC Approval; and

WHEREAS, Although the signage banners at other Landmarks (Metropolitan Museum of Art and NY Public Library) were cited as precedents, this building's facade is much smaller than those other Landmarks and, therefore, the impact of the proposed banners would be much more significant; and  

WHEREAS, Although the proposed banners comply with current zoning and would not block the view of the main entrance and the large window above it, nor the function of the portico, they are deemed detrimental to the appearance of the building; and

WHEREAS, The applicant wishes to support the banners with a series of four metal bands on each column (to avoid damaging the stone work) which provides a distracting, unnecessary building element and is not comparable to the cited precedents; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the proposed two new banner signs at 20 Union Square East.

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September 2012

15 East 26th Street (5th and Madison Aves), Application for Approval of awning at building entrance for SD26.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 31 in favor; 5 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 15 East 26th Street was originally a 20-story commercial building, built in 1912,  located in the Madison Square North Historic District, designated in June 2001; and 

WHEREAS, The building is  now a condominium building, located at the north end of Madison Park, and is also known as 15 Madison Park North; and  

WHEREAS, The ground floor commercial space contains a restaurant known as SD26; and

WHEREAS, SD26 has been required to replace a non-compliant entrance awning, installed without LPC approval, with a new awning as follows:

                        1) A canvas awning located above the restaurant entrance projecting 5' from the face of building for a distance of 6'4" at a height of 7'4" above the side walk. 

                        2) The awning has a 1'6" skirt that will contain the restaurant's name "SD26" on the street face and will have a framed portion that will rise above the skirt to meet the stone arch of the building entrance. 

                        3) The awning will be red and the lettering will be in white and will not be illuminated; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has presented the proposed design to LPC and received favorable response; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed new awning at for SD26 at 15 East 26th Street in the Madison Square North Historic District.
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17 West 32nd Street - Application to install an ADA-Compliant ramp at the front entrance to the hotel

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The owners of 17 West 32nd Street (La Quinta Hotel, formerly the Aberdeen Hotel) have applied for approval of an ADA-compliant ramp at the main entrance of the hotel which is an individually landmarked Beaux Arts building, in the neo baroque style, dating from the early 1900s; and

WHEREAS, The previously approved lift does not function optimally, is prone to break down, too complex to operate and slow to handle traffic; and

WHEREAS, The owners want to replace it with a ramp which will comply with Local Law 58 and ADA standards; and

WHEREAS, The ramp will have an iron railing, a non-skid surface and a bluestone base matching the front steps of the building; and

WHEREAS, The ramp will be 3 ft. 3 in. wide and 8 ft. long and can be used for baby carriages and deliveries to the building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to install an ADA-compliant ramp at the front entrance to 17 West 32nd Street, an individual NYC Landmark.

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22 West 24th Street - Application for a new 8-story building in the Ladies Mile Historic District

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 35 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 22-24 West 24th Street are two vacant adjoining lots, 19 feet in width each, located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The  Applicant wishes to construct a new 8- story building, 38 feet wide, with partial ground floor retail use and residential uses on the upper floor; and

WHEREAS, The proposed facade as presented to Community Board Five in renderings and elevations is not deemed harmonious with the Ladies Mile' Historic District architectural vocabulary, symmetry and proportions as follows: 

·         It is a flat, asymmetrical curtain wall construction composed glass and irregular bands of limestone   

·         The storefront and vertical elements at each party wall are clad in a reflective metal

·         The triple height storefront entrance is articulated by a sharp diagonal recess, giving the building a severe, jarring impact on the mercantile historic character of the District 

·         The building is capped with a tall screen of limestone panels (presumably to conceal rooftop mechanical equipment) in sharp contrast to the adjacent buildings' cornices and moldings, much greater in height than either of the two adjoining buildings

·         The light stone color appears to be in excessive contrast to the adjacent buildings

·         The amount of glass to be used (estimated at 55% by the architect) appears to be much greater than other buildings in the area

·         A single balcony projecting out from the 7th floor at the easterly side of the building provides a distracting, unnecessary building element; and

WHEREAS, The residential entry and commercial storefront lack the level of detail necessary for a thorough assessment; and

WHEREAS, A representative of the block association appeared before CB5 to speak in favor of constructing a residential building on this site, but was critical of this proposed design; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of this application for a new building at 22-24 West 24th Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District.

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54 West 21st Street (between 5th Avenue and Avenue if the Americas) Ladies' Mile Historic District - Application to replace the windows on the 12th Floor

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 54 West 21st Street is located in Ladies' Mile Historic District, and has applied to LPC for approval to replace the windows on the 12th floor; and

WHEREAS, LPC Staff has already approved a window replacement program for floors 4 to 11 of this building using beige painted aluminum windows which the 12th floor windows will match; and

WHEREAS, The windows on the 12th floor are rectangular, but give the appearance of being curved, using curved panels behind the curved masonry; and

WHEREAS, The appearance of the windows from the street will be essentially the same; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the replacement of the windows on the 12th floor at 54 West 21st Street in Ladies' Mile Historic District.

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160 Lexington Avenue - Application to alter an entrance and areaway

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 160 Lexington Avenue, an individual NYC Landmark, has applied to LPC to alter an entrance and areaway; and

WHEREAS, This building was originally The New York School of Applied Design for Women, later Phoenix School of Design, then it became part of Touro College, which sold the building to a private investor in 2006; and

WHEREAS, The present owner would like to make the ground level of the building attractive for a high end retailer by enlarging a secondary entrance door and areaway increasing the height of the door from 5 ft. 9 in. to 7 ft. 3 in, keeping the width at 3 ft., and making the entrance ADA-Compliant; and

WHEREAS, The building modifications will not significantly alter the appearance of the Landmark; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to alter an entrance and areaway at 160 Lexington Avenue, an individual NYC Landmark.

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235-245 West 46th Street, Paramount Hotel, application for proposed exterior renovation

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Paramount Hotel, located at 235-245 West 46th Street (between Broadway and Eighth Avenue) and granted landmark status in 2009, was built in 1927-28, during a period of tremendous expansion of the Broadway theaters and the activity of the Times Square theater district; and

WHEREAS, The hotel was designed by the renowned theater architect, Thomas Lamb, originally from Scotland but trained in New York, who became one of this country's most prolific theater designers, and whose work included movie theaters, including the Capitol Theater, Keith's Theater, and theaters for Loews and Fox; and

WHEREAS, The Paramount Hotel was Lamb's only hotel design, built to address the specific needs of visitors to Times Square; and

WHEREAS, The design was built to reflect the street-theater nature of its setting, and includes fanciful ornamentation on the lower and upper stories, a double-height arcade faced with marble, elaborate terra cotta ornamentation on the third story, and many significant details that allow it to stand out on its narrow street, leading up to a deep, copper mansard roof with richly ornamented dormers with broken pediments, volutes and cartouches of terra cotta; and

WHEREAS, It was noted at the time of designation that a number of the original façade characteristics had been removed in previous renovations, including the original storefronts and entrances recessed within the arched bays of the ground story colonnade, the marquees and bronze doors designating the entrances to the hotel and to the Diamond Horseshoe nightclub, and the two flags mounted above the second story; and

WHEREAS, The proposed exterior renovation includes replacing the missing prominent historic marquees with marquees that employ some of the design elements and materials of the original, adding bronze door entrances to the hotel and to the reconstructed Diamond Horseshoe entrance and replacement of non-original storefronts; and

WHEREAS, The proposed renovation also includes the restoration and repainting the original cast iron spandrels and arched windows from the current matte black to metallic bronze to reflect the historic colors; and

WHEREAS, The renovation will also include removing and replacing the end bay service doors and louvers, the replacement of the two documented flagpoles into their original locations and the installation of new signage at the retail entrance and at the reconstructed Diamond Horseshoe; and

WHEREAS, The two proposed bracket signs will be lit in a style that reflects the original documentation; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work utilizes historical information in preparation of the design; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed exterior work on the Paramount Hotel, 235-245 West 46th Street.

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551 Fifth Avenue - Application to add a sidewalk canopy to the East 45th Street entrance.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September13, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 551 Fifth AvenueThe Fred F. French Building, is a 38-story individual NYC Landmark, located on the northeast corner of East 45th Street; and

WHEREAS, The owner has applied to LPC for approval of a sidewalk canopy at the East 45th Street entrance; and

WHEREAS, The owner failed to appear before Community Board Five to describe the addition and to present images and samples of the materials to be used for the canopy, and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five has a history of declining similar Applicants' requests when they fail to appear; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for approval of a sidewalk canopy at the East 45th Street entrance to 551 Fifth Avenue, an individual NYC Landmark.

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October 2012

8-12 West 24th Street, application for replacement of windows on the north elevation

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 11, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 39 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 8-12 West 24th Street, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, has filed an Application to LPC for replacement of windows on the north and east elevations; and

WHEREAS, The proposed one-over-one new aluminum windows will be replacing existing non-original steel windows, to match similar windows on the West 23rd Street facade which have already been installed; and

WHEREAS, The new windows will be designed with a safety device limiting how much they can be opened because they are very large and heavy, making them difficult to maneuver, and will only be opened for cleaning purposes; and

WHEREAS, There are numerous other similar aluminum window replacements in Landmark buildings throughout the City; therefore, be it  

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 8-12 West 24th Street for replacement of windows on the north and east elevations.

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250 5th Avenue (bet. 28th & 29th Streets) application for a proposed hotel on 28th Street side of the site and by the adaptation of the upper floors of the existing bank building with a rooftop restaurant.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 11, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 39 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 250 5th Avenue (bet. 28th & 29th Streets) is located on the Madison Square North Historic District and appeared before CB 5 July 10 and was the subject of an LPC Public Hearing July 23, 2012; and

WHEREAS, CB5 recommended approval by a vote of 34-0-1 of their proposal as shown below; and

WHEREAS, LPC requested the developer and architect to revise their plans for the proposed hotel; and

WHEREAS, CB5 was notified by residents of the neighborhood that they were not informed of the CB 5 meetings; and

WHEREAS, CB5 scheduled another presentation of the revised proposal which would allow community input and comments on the proposal; and

WHEREAS, This re-hearing provided CB5 with an update on the provisions of the new proposal; and

WHEREAS, The revisions resulting from LPC comments only serve to improve the appearance of the proposed hotel with: 1) less verticality of the tower as a result of horizontal banding at every other floor break: 2) symmetrical placement of elevator shaft ways on the easterly facade of the tower; and 3) a redesign of a new entrance canopy with more historic references; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of a proposed hotel on 28th Street side of the site and by the adaptation of the upper floors of the existing bank building with a rooftop restaurant at 250 5th Avenue (bet. 28th & 29th Streets) in the Madison Square North Historic District.

 

CB 5 July 10, 2012 Resolution:

250 5th Avenue (bet. 28th & 29th Streets), Madison Square North Historic District - Application for new construction for a hotel tower modifying the penthouse floor of 250 Fifth Avenue as a roof top restaurant for the hotel.

WHEREAS, 250 Fifth Avenue is a five story and penthouse office building located in the Madison Square North Historic District, constructed in 1907-08, designed by the renowned Architects, McKim, Mead and White, for the Second National Bank as their headquarters building; and

WHEREAS, Second National Bank of the City of New York was founded in 1863, and was a pioneer in providing banking services for female customers; and

WHEREAS, 250 Fifth Avenue, renovated in 1907, 1913 and 1928, is now occupied by the Broadway National Bank (BNB Bank), and remains largely intact on the exterior; and

WHEREAS, The Neoclassical 250 Fifth Avenue building is constructed of limestone, brick and terra cotta and will be joined to a new 220 ft. high, 23-story hotel tower on West 28th Street, with a facade in a complimentary contemporary modern design, containing vertical elements, primarily of beige brick, slightly lighter in tone than the brick on the 250 Fifth Avenue facade; and

WHEREAS, The penthouse, or 6th Floor of 250 Fifth Avenue, will be enlarged and reconfigured but the new restaurant/bar design limits the penthouse visibility from the public way; and

WHEREAS, Other building modifications include creating entrances to the 180-key hotel and the installation of a canopy at the West 28th Street proposed main entrance to the hotel, where a now-demolished, circa 1913 metal and glass canopy once existed; and 

WHEREAS, LPC has approved two other 20-story new towers in the District at 241 Fifth Avenue and 224 Fifth Avenue, far more radical and modern in their design than this proposal and there are several other buildings in the District at this height or higher; and

WHEREAS, The building does not utilize 40,000 sq. ft. of allowable FAR, in effect keeping the height less than an as of right building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant agreed to return to CB 5 to present signage design details for the hotel and, in particular, the canopy when the hotel operator and/or hotel name is determined; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Application for the new hotel design at the N/W corner of 250 Fifth Avenue and West 28th Street, including a new, larger penthouse floor and a new entrance canopy on West 28th Street, provided the Applicant returns to CB5 with the signage design for the hotel and other elements relating to the entrance canopy once the name and/or operator of the hotel are determined.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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32 West 40th Street, Application for replacement of windows

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 11, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 32 West 40th Street, is an individual landmark, designated in 2011, also known as The Engineers Club, a twelve -story Renaissance Revival Style building, located across the street from Bryant Park, just off Fifth Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The building, the upper floors of which are now a residential coop, was added to the National Register of Historic Places on August 30, 2007; and

WHEREAS, The owners have applied to LPC to change the two historic window openings now filled by non-historic fixed metal grills at the top and single pane of glass below with new single pane windows, by removing the metal grills; and

WHEREAS, The 1905-1907 era building's original first-floor windows, one-over-one, double-hung with arched upper sashes received aluminum replacements about 1940; and

WHEREAS, A historic and early 20th Century photo clearly shows one-over-one, double-hung sash windows; and 

WHEREAS, The proposed replacement windows are a solid, fixed pane of glass suitable for a retail store, but not in keeping with the character and design of the building constructed as a private club; and

WHEREAS, The windows are treated with a standard factory finish and no effort was made to identify a historically appropriate color; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for the installation of new replacement windows on 32 West 40th Street.

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239 West 45th Street, Music Box Theatre, Application for replacement of projecting sign with new LED video signboards.

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 11, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 39 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Shubert Organization, the operator and co-owner (with the Estate of Irving Berlin) of 239 West 45th Street, Music Box Theatre, has applied to LPC for replacement of a projecting sign with a new, similar LED video signboard; and

WHEREAS, The Music Box Theatre was constructed in 1920 by producer Sam H. Harris for Irving Berlin's Music Box Revues, and over the years has been the home for numerous theatrical productions that exemplify Broadway; and

WHEREAS, This theater was designated an individual New York City Landmark in December 1987; and

WHEREAS, The signboard, not original, had become corroded and a public safety hazard and with LPC consent, was removed and repaired; and

WHEREAS, In keeping with new technology, in line with other marquees and signs in the Broadway area, including the New Amsterdam Theater, recently approved by CB 5 and LPC for new marquee, an Application has been filed with LPC for a new video signboard; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has researched the history of this theater and has demonstrated its effort to preserve the existing sign as much as possible and maintain the heritage of the building; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for replacement of the projecting sign with new similar signboard with an LED video display feature at the Music Box Theatre, 239 West 45th Street.

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104 West 40th Street - Application for revision of storefront to the 39th Street elevation

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 11, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 39 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Springs Mills Building, 104 West 40th Street, constructed in 1962, was designed by the prominent New York architectural firm, Harrison & Abramowitz, who collaborated on many significant mid-20th Century projects in New York, including structures at Rockefeller Center, the United Nations, Lincoln Center, Columbia University and the State Capital of New York at Albany; and

WHEREAS, This building was designated an individual NYC Landmark March 13, 2010,  adding its distinctive chamfered tower to the city's growing list of Modern buildings under landmark protection; and

WHEREAS, The current owners have leased space to TKP Conference Center for meeting rooms and other business activities, similar to conference centers it runs in Tokyo, Shanghai and elsewhere; and

WHEREAS, TKP is taking over a long vacant space in the building, that will have a separate entrance on the West 39th street side of the block through building, in what was once a storefront; and 

WHEREAS, The owners of 104 West 40th Street have applied to LPC for approval of a design for a secondary building entrance on West 39th Street; and

WHEREAS, The materials (steel, aluminum and glass) and design will complement the nearby building entrance, immediately to the west; and

WHEREAS, The applicant, at the suggestion of CB5, will place a small plate over the back of the EXIT sign above the door so that the sign does not read backwards from the front of the building; and

WHEREAS, The vinyl lettering on the glass will be removable for future identification needs of subsequent tenants; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 104 West 40th Street for revision of storefront at the 39th Street elevation.

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1552 Broadway - Modification to windows and interior panel

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 11, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 39 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 1552 Broadway, the I. Miller Building, is an individual Landmark, and came before CB 5 May 2012 with a Proposal to perform major building renovations which were approved by a vote of 37-0-1; and

WHEREAS, The owner of this building also owns the adjacent building, 1560 Broadway, which wraps around this building to the east and the north, allowing the two buildings to be interconnected for a new retail tenant, Express, an apparel company, which will lease space in both buildings; and

WHEREAS, The tenant requires an escalator for vertical circulation placed in the I, Miller Landmark that will be highly visible from the street and, in the opinion of LPC staff, may have a significant impact on the Landmark, as viewed from the outside through the windows; and

WHEREAS, LPC has scheduled a Public Hearing on October 9, 2012 to deal with this relatively minor concern; and

WHEREAS, The applicant presented CB5 with a design for large window boxes and an 8 foot interior panel between the two buildings to conceal the escalator and anything else that would distract from the Landmark's 1920's appearance; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposal for 1552 Broadway to have large window boxes and an 8 foot interior panel designed to conceal the interior escalator.

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Grand Central Terminal 89 East 42 Street Pershing Square Viaduct Enhancement Project

At the scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, October 11, 2012, the Board passed the following resolution by a vote of 38 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, The Pershing Square Viaduct (Park Avenue Viaduct), located on Park Avenue, spanning from Grand Central Terminal at 42nd Street to 40th Street was designated a New York City Landmark on September 23, 1980; and

WHEREAS, The Viaduct was designed by Warren and Wetmore and was conceived as part of the original 1903 Reed and Stem design for Grand Central Terminal, with construction completed in 1919; and

WHEREAS, The design of the Viaduct is French in character with three low arches separated by granite piers with iron lamp posts; and

WHEREAS, The Viaduct is integral for establishing , enhancing and highlighting Grand Central Terminal's historical main entrance at 89 East 42nd Street and as an important connector establishing Park Avenue as a north/south thoroughfare; and

WHEREAS, The Grand Central Partnership, the Metro-North Railroad and the NYC Department of Transportation are collaborating to improve and enhance the Viaduct in conjunction with the Centennial of Grand Central Terminal on 2013; and

WHEREAS, The architectural firm Beyer, Blinder, Belle has prepared a detailed submission for CB 5 and LPC detailing the following elements:

  • Patch and repaint both sides of the existing three steel arches that span from Grand Central to 41stStreet.
  • The Viaduct's facial, rails and the eight iron lamp posts will be painted "GCT green" and the underside of the Viaduct tobe painted white.
  • New identification signage will be added to the faux built up steel beam identifying the main entry at Grand Central and the DOT planned Pershing Square Plaza.
  • Removable pin mounted bronze letters will be added on both the west and east facades.
  • Linear LED lighting will be added to highlight the signage, the arch and the underside of the viaduct; all lighting will be attached with painted metal clamps and will be removable.

WHEREAS, Metro-North Railroad has done a paint analysis to match the original paint for the patching and repainting; and

WHEREAS, These modifications and enhancements are deemed consonant with the historical character of the Viaduct; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval the Grand Central Terminal Pershing Square Viaduct Enhancements.

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July 2012

18 East 16th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Union Square West)

WHEREAS, 18 East 16th Street is located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District and has applied to LPC for approval of replacement of the ground floor storefront; and

WHEREAS, This is a Beaux-Arts style store and loft building designed by Benjamin Levitan and built in 1905-07; and

WHEREAS, The Application is to install storefront infill, signage, lighting, and an awning; and

WHEREAS, The existing metal storefront framing and glazing as well as the roll down gate and all associated housings (at top and at sides), including the boxed out framing at either side of the original opening will be removed; and

WHEREAS, The storefront will be restored to its original dimensions; and

WHEREAS, A new painted wood framed storefront assembly, a new sign and a new retractable awning will be installed and a new banner will be placed on the existing flagpole; and

WHEREAS, The design, materials and finishes are considered appropriate for the building and comparable to neighboring buildings; and

WHEREAS, The renovation will be an improvement over the existing storefront condition; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for the storefront replacement at 18 East 16th Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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27 West 44th Street, Harvard Club - Application to construct a rooftop terrace, extend the freight elevator and exit stair and build a doubles squash court

WHEREAS, 27 West 44th Street, Harvard Club, is an eight-story private club, designed by famed architectural firm, McKim, Mead and White, in 1894 and designated as an individual NYC Landmark in 1966; and

WHEREAS, This structure was designed as an elegant Georgian townhouse, created from Harvard red brick and limestone, with additions made in 1903, 1915, 1946 and 2000; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is requesting approval to construct a rooftop terrace including a bar/lounge, extend the freight elevator and exit stair and build a doubles squash court on the upper floor; and

WHEREAS, The new additions will contain materials similar to those used in the existing structure such as Harvard brick and limestone; and

WHEREAS, The addition is deemed elegant and respectful of the Landmark, with minimal visibility of the additions seen from the public way; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Application of the Harvard Club, 27 West 44th Street, for the addition of a rooftop terrace, freight elevator, exit stair and doubles squash court.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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130 West 30th Street Application for Storefront Modifications and Rear Wall Changes.

WHEREAS, 130 West 30th Street is an individual NYC Landmark, designated in 2001, and designed by Cass Gilbert, architect of many prominent structures throughout the U.S., such as the Woolworth Building facing City Hall Park, the U.S. Supreme Court, New York Life Building in CB 5, U.S. Custom House facing Bowling Green, U.S. Courthouse at Foley Square and three State Capitols (MN, AK and WV); and

WHEREAS, This building was completed in 1927, when architectural styles were changing from neo-Gothic to Art Deco, and served as a commercial building until its renovation and conversion of its upper floors to condominium apartments in 2003; and

WHEREAS, The building, now named after Cass Gilbert (with his family's consent) has a façade with exotic two-tone terra cotta panels and friezes depicting Assyrian winged horses, roaring lions and racing chariots that were executed by the same company that worked with the architect on the Woolworth Building; and

WHEREAS, Congregation Beit Simchat Torah has purchased the first floor commercial condominium unit for a reported price of $7.1 million for their use as a synagogue and community center for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Jews; and 

WHEREAS, The Congregation is proposing to modify the non-historic storefront as follows:

 - remove one of two entrances

- replace the door on the remaining entrance in a more historically appropriate style

- repair original metal grills

- replace as needed and replicate for the infill of the former entry

- remove two canvas awnings and replace with a modest metal canopy

- reverse paint the storefront vertical glass with gold and black bars in the style of historic window signs

- place two 24 in X 24 " signs on either side of the entry with the name of the synagogue in English and Hebrew

- install two small LCD monitors inside the glass windows announcing classes, lectures and other information; and

WHEREAS, The non-historic storefront is similar to the original Cass Gilbert designed storefront in fenestration and profile; and

WHEREAS, CB 5 elected not to review or comment on rear wall changes in the application since they are not visible from the public way; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 130 West 30th Street for storefront changes and does not take a position on the rear wall modifications.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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250 5th Avenue (bet. 28th & 29th Streets), Madison Square North Historic District - Application for new construction for a hotel tower modifying the penthouse floor of 250 Fifth Avenue as a roof top restaurant for the hotel.

WHEREAS, 250 Fifth Avenue is a five story and penthouse office building located in the Madison Square North Historic District, constructed in 1907-08, designed by the renowned Architects, McKim, Mead and White, for the Second National Bank as their headquarters building; and

WHEREAS, Second National Bank of the City of New York was founded in 1863, and was a pioneer in providing banking services for female customers; and

WHEREAS, 250 Fifth Avenue, renovated in 1907, 1913 and 1928, is now occupied by the Broadway National Bank (BNB Bank), and remains largely intact on the exterior; and

WHEREAS, The Neoclassical 250 Fifth Avenue building is constructed of limestone, brick and terra cotta and will be joined to a new 220 ft. high, 23-story hotel tower on West 28th Street, with a facade in a complimentary contemporary modern design, containing vertical elements, primarily of beige brick, slightly lighter in tone than the brick on the 250 Fifth Avenue facade; and

WHEREAS, The penthouse, or 6th Floor of 250 Fifth Avenue, will be enlarged and reconfigured but the new restaurant/bar design limits the penthouse visibility from the public way; and

WHEREAS, Other building modifications include creating entrances to the 180-key hotel and the installation of a canopy at the West 28th Street proposed main entrance to the hotel, where a now-demolished, circa 1913 metal and glass canopy once existed; and 

WHEREAS, LPC has approved two other 20-story new towers in the District at 241 Fifth Avenue and 224 Fifth Avenue, far more radical and modern in their design than this proposal and there are several other buildings in the District at this height or higher; and

WHEREAS, The building does not utilize 40,000 sq. ft. of allowable FAR, in effect keeping the height less than an as of right building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant agreed to return to CB 5 to present signage design details for the hotel and, in particular, the canopy when the hotel operator and/or hotel name is determined; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Application for the new hotel design at the N/W corner of 250 Fifth Avenue and West 28th Street, including a new, larger penthouse floor and a new entrance canopy on West 28th Street, provided the Applicant returns to CB5 with the signage design for the hotel and other elements relating to the entrance canopy once the name and/or operator of the hotel are determined.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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270 Fifth Avenue/One West 29th Street, Marble Collegiate Church - Application to remove the modern promenade to provide for a new barrier free entrance and a covered walkway, for better ADA accessibility directly into the Church.

WHEREAS, The Marble Collegiate Church, founded in 1628, is one of the oldest continuous Protestant congregations in North America and its current home was built in 1851-54, designed by Samuel A. Warner in Romanesque Revival style with Gothic trim; the facade is covered in Tuckahoe marble, for which the church, originally called the Fifth Avenue Church, was renamed in 1906; and

WHEREAS, Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, the noted author of The Power of Positive Thinking served as senior minister from 1932-1984 and under his ministry, the church's influence reached national levels and became known as "America's Hometown Church"; and

WHEREAS, The Church was designated an individual NYC Landmark in 1967, one of the earliest designations by LPC; and

WHEREAS, Marble Collegiate Church has applied to LPC for approval to remove the modern promenade currently connecting the Landmarked Church to One West 29th Street, (the Marble Collegiate Church's office building) restoring the southerly side of the Church with its original designed side entrance; and

WHEREAS, The Church has presented several historical photographs of this original side entrance which was considered integral to the Church's architecture and utilization; and

WHEREAS, Marble Collegiate Church has also applied to demolish the non-original structure between the Church and the adjacent building to the north of its property on Fifth Avenue to provide for a new barrier free, ADA accessible, covered walkway directly leading into the Church; and

WHEREAS, This non-original structure was not built with the same architectural design or materials and is no longer used as offices for the Church; and

WHEREAS, The demolition of the structure will allow for the Church's Tiffany windows which have been obstructed by the structure to be seen from the outside, enhancing the Church's appearance; and

WHEREAS, A representative of CB5 visited the Church and observed that the current ADA entrance is at the furthest access point to the Church on West 29th Street, at the freight and refuse disposal entrance; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five has reviewed impressive, detailed architectural designs and a scale model prepared by Helpern Architects representing the proposed modifications embodying the Church's "Master Plan", including qualifying for a NYC Public Assembly Permit, although not strictly required, nevertheless, being obtained to satisfy the congregation on the feasibility and safety of the major renovations being undertaken; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval for the Marble Collegiate Church to remove the modern promenade now connecting the Landmarked Church to One West 29th Street at the southerly side of the Church and the removal of the building to its north to provide for new barrier free entrances and a new covered walkway for better ADA accessibility directly into the Church, as well as enhanced visibility of this historic structure.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 34 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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350 Fifth Avenue (Empire State Building), Application for work to install a new Elevator Dispatch System in the designated interior lobby.

WHEREAS, The Empire State Building, 350 Fifth Avenue,  is an individual New York City Landmark, famous throughout the world, with a Designated interior lobby; and

WHEREAS, This Art Deco style office building lobby was designed by Shreve, Lamb and Harmon and built in l930 -193l, with the lobby walls, floors, and ceiling all "Protected" surfaces; and

WHEREAS, The owners of the building are requesting approval of  an Elevator Dispatch System  (EDS)  for its 58 passenger elevators to expedite passenger travel by creating systematized, coordinated elevator pick-up and shorter travel time, grouping passengers by common, contiguous and floor destinations, with the following objectives:

                        1. reducing the number of stops per trip;

                        2. allowing for overall increased system efficiency;

                        3. energy efficiency; and

WHEREAS, The EDS, developed in conjunction with an extensive study by Otis Elevator Company,  involves the use of a lobby touch screen key pad mounted on free-standing, custom-made steel stanchions to be placed  at a minimum of 29 different locations, within their corresponding elevator banks, throughout the lobby; and

WHEREAS, The EDS differs from the existing elevator system by assigning the passengers a specific elevator, not just the next available one; and

WHEREAS, This will mean that the passengers will be assigned to the most appropriate car for their destination, reducing the number of stops per trip, decreased elevator travel time, instant car designation via the touch screen, reduced waiting time and improved lobby flow; and

WHEREAS, The new system has been designed by Beyer Binder Belle, Architects and Planners, to minimize the impact on the historic Landmark interior space including materials and surfaces such as marble walls and pavers, all the changes designed to be compatible with the existing lobby design and materials, and reversible if future technology justifies reversal of the proposed lobby modifications; and

WHEREAS, The stanchions will be 4 ft. 6 in. high, 3 in. wide and 5 in. deep, designed  for  persons with disabilities to easily access the touch screens,  plus other security and safety elements; and

WHEREAS, The screens will contain no advertising; and

WHEREAS, The stanchions require the removal of, and replacement of black Belgian Block marble pavers of similar design and appearance; and

WHEREAS, The existing elevator push buttons will be eliminated and the areas where they were located will be covered with stainless steel wall plates; and 

WHEREAS, The design goal of the installation is to have a minimal presence in the lobby and to respect the historic fabric and preservation of the lobby's appearance with the intention to make this building more competitive with other newer, major office buildings, at the same time reducing energy consumption and costs; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for work to install a new Elevator Dispatch System in the designated interior lobby at 350 Fifth Avenue (Empire State Building).

The above resolution passed by a vote of 22 in favor; 12 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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June 2012

1 West 54th Street, The University Club, application for renovation of the main entrance and canopy

WHEREAS, The University Club, a private social club located at 1 West 54th Street, is an Italian Renaissance palazzo-style structure built by famed architectural firm McKim, Mead and White in 1900, and was designated an individual NYC Landmark in 1967; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is requesting approval to replace an existing fabric awning canopy (with supports anchored into the sidewalk) at the entrance to the imposing building with a bronze-framed and glass, projecting, curved canopy, measuring 10' 4" X 15'; and

WHEREAS, The new entrance design will contain other elements including new up and down lights, a new transom, new bronze and glass doors and structural struts to support the canopy; and

WHEREAS, The re-design is deemed elegant and respectful of the Landmark, significantly enhancing the visual impact of the grand arched entrance way; and 

WHEREAS, The presentation was considered outstanding, and included examples of many other NYC Landmarks (some in CB 5) that have had the benefit of new glass canopies which are harmonious with their historical and architectural design, as this promises to be; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Application of the University Club, 1 West 54th Street, for renovation of the main entrance including a new bronze and glass canopy.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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5 Columbus Circle. aka 1790 Broadway, West 58th Street) Application for proposed signage

WHEREAS, 5 Columbus Circle. aka 1790 Broadway, the former U.S. Rubber Building, designed in 1912 by the prominent architectural firm, Carrere and Hastings (NY Public Library, Frick Mansion, Lunt-Fontanne Theater, U.S. Senate and House Office Buildings, D.C.) was designated an individual NYC Landmark December 19, 2000; and

WHEREAS, This Beaux Arts style building was part of "Automobile Row" along Broadway when the automobile was first gaining prominence in America at the beginning of the 20th Century and once housed the U.S. Tire retail store on the its two floors which were remodeled in 1959 for a bank; and

WHEREAS, The current owner obtained approval for a "Vanity" address, "5 Columbus Circle," from the Manhattan Borough President and would now like to identify the building with the new designation by installing new signage on various parts of the facade; and

WHEREAS, the Applicant reduced the size of the large numeral "5" above the corner of the building, from 5' 9" to a much smaller, less conspicuous 2' 9"(less than half the size first proposed) at the suggestion of Community Board Five, and agreed to present this smaller signage to LPC; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the revised signage proposal for 5 Columbus Circle, aka 1790 Broadway.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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7 West 18th Street, Ladies' Mile Historic District Application for replacement of storefront

WHEREAS, 7 West 18th Street, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, has Applied for replacement of the ground floor storefront; and

WHEREAS, The insulated glass windows (to prevent fogging) framed with steel mullions will extend to the top of the ground floor thereby exposing parts of  the interior columns, now hidden from view; and

WHEREAS, The design, materials and finishes are considered appropriate and comparable to the adjacent City Bakery and other buildings in the District; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is not requesting approval of any signage or lighting and the renovation will be an improvement over the existing building condition; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for the replacement of the storefront at 7 West 18th Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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22 Central Park South, Application to Alter the Entrance, Façade, and Roof

WHEREAS, 22 Central Park South is a vacant eight-story residential building, located on Central Park South, adjacent to the landmarked Plaza Hotel and under the same ownership as the Plaza; and

WHEREAS, In 1965, for unknown reasons, the tax lot for 22 CPS was merged into the Plaza's tax lot 25, so that when in 1969 the Plaza was designated by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, the Plaza and 22 CPS were on the same tax lot; and

WHEREAS, The Plaza's LPC designation report mentions "tax lot 25" it does not mention or describe 22 CPS, however by reason of the merged tax lots 22 CPS is deemed part of the Plaza landmark designation; and

WHEREAS, While the tax lots for the Plaza and 22 CPS are now again separate, since it is still considered part of the landmarked Plaza, 22 CPS had to apply to LPC for alterations to its entrance, façade, and roof; and

WHEREAS, The alterations for 22 CPS will create seven residences and consist of:

1.      replacing the existing façade with new limestone, having a symmetrical picture window arrangement, and flanked by vertical casement windows at each level;

2.      removing the existing fire escapes;

3.      completely resurfacing the existing subway entrance with limestone and  changing the building's entry to the eastern side;

4.      setting the eighth floor back six feet from the roof line and constructing in place of an existing greenhouse and bulkhead a new rooftop penthouse, which will not be visible from Central Park South or Grand Army Plaza, giving the building an overall height of approximately 100 feet; and

WHEREAS, The proposed alterations are appropriate for Central Park South and do not in any way adversely affect the landmarked Plaza and would be a significant improvement to the existing vacant 22 CPS; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed alterations to the entrance, façade, and roof of 22 Central Park South.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 35 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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224 5th Avenue, betw. 26th and 27th Streets (Madison Square North Historic District) Application for Approval of retail storefront signage

WHEREAS, 224 5th Avenue  a six-story commercial building, is located in the Madison Square North Historic District, originally constructed as a residential building in the mid-19th century, then converted to commercial use in the late 19th century when its original facade was replaced by a commercial facade which was later entirely replaced in 1981-82; and

WHEREAS, 7-Eleven, a new retail tenant on the ground floor, has applied to LPC (after receiving a warning letter relating to unapproved signage) for approval of two new signs:

1)      a horizontal  backlit channel sign running the length of the building above the storefront, measuring 2 ft. X 18 ft., and

2)      a second smaller unlit blade sign mounted above and to the right of the storefront, measuring 16 in. X 18 in.; and

WHEREAS, These two signs will contain the typical design, materials and colors that 7-Eleven uses elsewhere in the City and will not have excessive illumination; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed new signage at 224 5th Avenue.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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236 5th Avenue, bet. 27th & 28th Streets, (Madison Square North Historic District) Application to legalize facade improvements

WHEREAS, 236 5th Avenue, bet. 27th & 28th Streets, is an 11-story commercial building, constructed in 1907, and is located in the Madison Square North Historic District which was created June 26, 2001; and

WHEREAS, The NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission has notified the owners of a Violation resulting from facade repair work performed without obtaining LPC Approval for the materials and colors used; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has asked LPC to allow the unapproved facade work to remain in place until the next Local Law 10 inspection and repair time, at an undisclosed future date; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds that the facade work performed without LPC approval should be corrected immediately rather than waiting for the next Local Law 10 inspection to take place; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the Application to remove the violation and require the Applicant to restore the facade at 236 5th Avenue immediately with materials and colors of grout, cement and/or mortar to be approved by LPC, consonant with the appearance of the building at the time of Historic District Designation or an earlier period acceptable to LPC.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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457 Madison Avenue, bet. 50th & 51st Streets, application for a minor modification to the north façade of the Villard Houses to create an ADA accessible entry to the building and other minor building changes

WHEREAS,  457 Madison Avenue, between 50th & 51st Streets, the Villard Houses, was constructed in 1884, designed by the architectural firm McKim, Meade and White three years after they started their company, commissioned by Henry Villard, then president of the Northern Pacific Railroad; and

WHEREAS, In 1968, the NYC Landmarks Preservation designated the complex an individual Landmark; and

WHEREAS, The NYC real estate developer, Harry B. Helmsley, constructed the 51-story New York Palace Hotel tower directly behind the original building, designed by architects Emery Roth & Sons and Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer in 1977 which was completed in 1980; and

WHEREAS, What was once The Villard Mansion's carriage entrance on Madison Avenue is now the New York Palace's famed Courtyard; and

WHEREAS, The two-story marble lobby joins The Villard Mansion with the hotel to form the ultimate in New York City luxury hotels; and

WHEREAS, The current owners of the hotel complex have applied to NYC LPC for approval of a modification to one existing entrance door on the northerly side of the property on East 51st Street for a retail store entrance, providing an ADA compliant entrance leading to an interior elevator; and

WHEREAS, The proposed design and the materials to be used for this double door are harmonious with the appearance of the existing two doors and other parts of the building; and

WHEREAS, There was some discussion about the "eyebrow" canopy above the retail doorway entrance, which while not original to the building, has been "grandfathered" from the time of designation and has not been found objectionable by LPC staff; and

WHEREAS, Additional minor changes to the roof are being requested by the Applicant including a small elevator roof hatch projecting 12" above the roof line; a new louver in an existing window opening with a finish to match the existing louver; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is also making extensive interior building modifications, some of which involve ADA compliance, but are not part of this Application; therefore, be it 

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of building modifications at 457 Madison Avenue, between 50th & 51st Streets, to create an ADA accessible entryway and other minor building changes to the north façade of the Villard Houses.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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May 2012

123 West 44th Street, application for signage

WHEREAS, 123 West 44th Street, currently known as the AKA Hotel, was constructed in 1893 by George Keister as The Gerard (Hotel) and considered an exceptionally fine brick, limestone and terra-cotta apartment hotel, an important and popular building type in the late 19th century; and

WHEREAS, It was designed in an unusual style that combines late Romanesque Revival and German Gothic and Renaissance forms to create a handsome and sophisticated work that reflects Keister's architectural philosophy; and

WHEREAS, The Gerard - later the Langwell Hotel - was in the vanguard of the development of the Times Square area; and

WHEREAS, It is considered one of the more architecturally distinguished and visually prominent buildings in Midtown West; and

WHEREAS, The owners have requested to remove a large banner on the west facing façade and replace this banner with a painted wall with the name of the hotel, "AKA"; and

WHEREAS, A painted wall is in keeping with the historic signage of the Langwell Hotel at the time of designation (and other buildings in the Times Square area) and is within the appropriate Landmark guidelines; and

WHEREAS, The painted sign will be approximately 5 stories tall and be approximately 10 feet across; and

WHEREAS, The applicants have also requested the installation of a "blade" sign (with the hotel's logo, "AKA," applied on both sides of a two-story, thin panel) on the primary West 44th Street façade; and

WHEREAS, The Langwell Hotel included a blade sign in the same approximate location and the requested sign can be read from both directions; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to install a blade sign on the primary façade of 123 West 44th Street, to remove the current banner sign on the West-facing façade and replace it with a painted sign as detailed in the application.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 33 in favor; 4 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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230 Park Avenue, (the former Helmsley Building and the former New York Central Building) application for elevator cab refurbishment

WHEREAS, 230 Park Avenue (between East 45th and East 46th Streets), formerly known as the New York Central Building, then known as the New York General Building, more recently known as the Helmsley Building, has been an individual NYC Landmark since its designation March 31, 1987, designed by Warren and Wetmore as part of the complex of buildings surrounding Grand Central Station, also designed by these same architects; and

WHEREAS, Built in 1929 as the luxurious headquarters for the New York Central Railroad, 230 Park Avenue is a 34-story office building strategically straddling Park Avenue at East 46th Street to East 45th Street, offering a premier location as a direct connection to Grand Central Terminal; and

WHEREAS, Certain interior portions of this building are also landmarked along with the exterior, including 16 of the 24 passenger elevator cabs; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is seeking to standardize and upgrade the materials, technology and features in the interiors of all 24 passenger elevator cabs; and

WHEREAS, The proposed work consists of the following:

a) Walls of the cabs would be rebuilt in wood with a polyester finish, to match the original finish and color;

b) The original inlays and egg and dart moldings will be replicated in bronze;

c) The sky and cloud motif ceilings will be restored with murals painted on canvas and mounted over the existing ceilings (reversible for future conservation purposes);

d) Wooden ceiling ribs will be painted, with color selected based on a paint analysis;

e) Original bronze cornices, rib elements and light fixture/fan units will be stripped of existing layers of paint, restored to original finish and lacquered; and

f) New bronze finish control panels will be installed in the cabs and will contain Captivate LCD screens (which will display building information, weather, news and advertising) and digital floor/direction indicators; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds all of the proposed work except for the LCD screens to be appropriate for and harmonious with the interior landmark, and commends the applicant for the thoroughness of its proposal; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five found the proposed LCD screens themselves and their use to display advertising to be inappropriate for this landmarked interior space; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the proposed elevator cab refurbishment work at 230 Park Avenue unless the applicant agrees to remove the new LCD screens which CB5 finds incompatible with the historic character of the elevator cabs. 

The above resolution passed  by a vote of 34 in favor; 3 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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I. Miller Building, 1552 Broadway (between 46th & 47th Streets - Application to restore the facade and to replace the existing signage

WHEREAS, The I. Miller Building located at 1552-1554 Broadway (also known as 167 West 46th Street) features a facade designed by the architect Louis H. Friedland, which was constructed in 1927-1929, for the remodeling of the Times Square branch of the fashionable women's shoe store chain; and

WHEREAS, The building's handsome design incorporates rich materials - limestone, marble and mosaic - and motifs from several different classically-inspired historic styles, and had been commissioned by Israel Miller as a tribute to the theatrical profession; and

WHEREAS, The facade features an inscription below the cornice reading "THE SHOW FOLKS SHOE SHOP DEDICATED TO BEAUTY IN FOOTWEAR", and four large statues, designed by Alexander Stirling Calder, depicting Great Ladies of the Theater - Mary Pickford as Little Lord Fauntleroy,  Rosa Ponselle as Norma, Ethel Barrymore as Ophelia, and Marilyn Miller as Sunny; and

WHEREAS, The building's western wall, which faces into Times Square, has historically been dominated by signage, including some of the earliest examples of active electric signage designed by the renowned advertising executive and lighting designer Douglas Leigh; and

WHEREAS, On June 29, 1999, The I. Miller Building was designated as an individual landmark by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission; and

WHEREAS, The building's current owners have submitted an application seeking permission to restore the facade, and to install new storefronts and signage; and

WHEREAS, Currently, the building's western side displays two billboards - one sign measuring 32'-10" in height, underneath a rooftop sign measuring 46'-1" in height; and

WHEREAS, Currently, the building's south side displays two billboards - one sign measuring 32'-10" in height, and one rooftop sign measuring 46'-1" in height; and

WHEREAS, Currently, the southwest corner of the historic facade's second floor is obscured by the lower of the billboards; and

WHEREAS, In 2009, a previous owner had received approval from the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission which would allow for the installation of an additional 37'-0" high sign above the building's western side and an additional 37'-0" high sign above the building's southern side, however none of these signs were constructed; and

WHEREAS, The building's current owner proposes that the signage at the western side would be one sign measuring 31'-0" high, underneath two rooftop signs each measuring 43'-4-3/4" high, all of which would be 48'-5" wide, and all of which would have 9'-0" signs returning toward, but not obscuring the building's southern facade; and

WHEREAS, The current application proposes the installation of a sign suspended above the rooftop of the southern facade which would measure 67'-1-1/4" high and 28'-8" wide; and

WHEREAS, The current application proposes to upgrade the signage to state-of-the-art LED displays; and

WHEREAS, The current application proposes to upgrade the storefront of the building's western side, including such modifications as removal of mostly non historic signage and other elements, revealing second floor windows, and changing from two to one retail tenant space; and

WHEREAS, The current application proposes extensive repairs and restoration of the southern facade's masonry and statuary plus appropriate illumination of the southern facade; and

WHEREAS, The signage plan will enhance the historical, architectural and urbanist character of The I. Miller Building by allowing the historic building to be more visible and legible; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to restore the facade, and to install new storefronts and signage, as presented to CB 5, at The I. Miller Building at 1552-1554 Broadway.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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April 2012

12 West 21st Street, between 5th Avenue and Avenue of the Americas, (Ladies' Mile Historic District) application to install storefront infill

WHEREAS, 12 West 21st Street, is a twelve-story neo-Renaissance style store and loft building located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, designed and built in 1907 by Buchman and Fox, featuring classical ornamental details; and

WHEREAS, The current owner of the building is applying to LPC for approval of a new storefront for a high end Japanese restaurant, to be constructed in aluminum with an aluminum C channel and glass, the prominent vertical mullions and framing are to be painted in dark green and jet black; and

WHEREAS, There will be no exterior lighting and only four minimal signs, consisting of two small discreet plaques on the facade and two decals applied on the glass storefront; and

WHEREAS, There are two previously approved, existing flagpoles on the facade that may be used for restaurant banners, but LPC staff informed the applicant not to reference them in the application since they do not relate to the proposed renovations; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval for the new storefront at 12 West 21st Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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12-14 West 44th Street, Hotel Mansfield, proposed designation

WHEREAS, Under Section 3020.7 of the City Charter, the LPC is required to give CB5 Notice of a proposed designation:  

"In order to provide an opportunity for comment, in advance of any

  hearing on a proposed designation of a landmark, landmark site, interior

  landmark,  scenic  landmark  or  historic district, the commission shall

  send a notice of the proposed designation and the hearing  to  the  city

  planning commission, all affected community boards and the office of the

  borough president in whose borough the property or district is located," and

WHEREAS, On March 22, 2012 the LPC wrote to CB5 that a hearing was to be held on March 27, 2012 that would address the proposed Designation of Hotel Mansfield as a NYC Landmark, which would not have provided CB 5 with adequate time to review and vote on this matter at its next regularly scheduled meeting, April 12, 2012; and

WHEREAS, Hotel Mansfield is a 12-story, red-brick and limestone Beaux-Arts style hotel located on the same prestigious Midtown block as the New York Yacht club, the former Yale Club, the Harvard Club, the former Mechanics' and Tradesmen's Institute, the New York Bar Association and the Algonquin hotel, all individually designated NYC Landmarks; and

WHEREAS, Built in 1902 and designed by the architects Renwick, Aspinwall & Owen who are recognized for their design of the Colonial Revival style buildings located in the New York City Farm Colony-Seaview Hospital Historic District on Staten Island, as well as for a 1904-05 addition to James Renwick, Jr.'s Smallpox Hospital on Roosevelt Island, which is an individually designated New York City Landmark; and

WHEREAS, The Hotel Mansfield features several hallmarks of the Beaux-Arts style, including a two-story rusticated limestone base; vertical ranks of copper-clad oriels; bold and over-scaled ornament such as quoins, cartouches, garlands, and swags and a heavy balcony supported on paired modillions beneath a copper cornice decorated with anthemia; the hotel is crowned by a curving mansard roof with three large segmental-arch dormers, and

WHEREAS, The hotel is now known as the Mansfield Hotel, the building is still in use as a hotel and remains an imposing presence on West 44 Street, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Despite the fact that the LPC Public Hearing has already taken place without CB5 being given an adequate opportunity to  review and vote on the proposed Designation, based on its historic, architectural and cultural significance. Community Board Five endorses the approval of Designation by LPC of Hotel Mansfield, 12 West 44 Street as an individual NYC Landmark, which is scheduled for an official vote by the Commissioners on April 10, 2012.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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31 East 20th Street, application to legalize windows

WHEREAS, 31 East 20th Street is a building located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The owner is applying to LPC for approval of windows installed without obtaining LPC approval resulting in a NYC DOB violation; and

WHEREAS, The owner has indicated that he owns the adjacent building at 29 East 20th Street which also has DOB violations from failure to obtain LPC approval for various building violations; and

WHEREAS, In February 2006 CB5 voted to have LPC deny the owners' request to "legalize" the violations at 29 East 20th Street and in March 2012 CB5 voted to approve the owner removing those violations and restoring that building to the condition that the building was in prior to the renovations made without LPC approval, which resulted in the violations; and

WHEREAS, At his appearance at CB5 regarding 29 East 20th Street the owner made no mention of 31 East 20th Street and he did not appear at CB5 to discuss this building and his application to LPC; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to LPC to "legalize" the windows at 31 East 20th Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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Bryant Park, 40 West 42nd Street, application for temporary installation of Ice Rink, Restaurant, Holiday shops

WHEREAS, Bryant Park is a New York City Scenic Landmark, designed in 1933 as a formal French style garden  by Lusby Simpson, and was reconstructed and partially redesigned by Hanna/Olin in 1988-91; and

WHEREAS, In years subsequent to the 1988-91 reconstruction, Bryant Park has become the host of special events throughout the year, which have substantially increased the number of visitors; and

WHEREAS, Upsilon Ventures, a specialty development firm with expertise in property management, marketing and production, is the operator of the skating rink (known as "The Pond"), Celsius Restaurant and the Holiday Shops at Bryant Park; and 

WHEREAS, Upsilon has applied to NYC Department of Buildings for its annual permit to operate the foregoing amenities as it has done for the past nine years and was told by DOB it is required to obtain approval from NYC LPC for a "Permanent temporary" facility permit after three years of "Temporary" permits; and

WHEREAS, Accordingly, Upsilon has applied to LPC for approval of its "placement" of temporary structures in the Park from October 1 to March 31, which includes the time for setting up and taking down the structures, although the actual time frame for operating portions of the venue is much shorter, namely, the 150 Holiday shop kiosks are open from November to the first week of January and the skating rink is open from Halloween to February; and

WHEREAS, The footprint for these activities is essentially the same from year to year with some minor changes in the configuration and size of the kiosks depending on the vendors, the installation of lighting and a movie screen set up for weekly film showings; and

WHEREAS, CB5 only reviewed the physical installation, or "Placement" from a Landmarks perspective without any evaluation of the impact of operations from a Parks standpoint, including financial benefits to Bryant Park Restoration Corp.; and

WHEREAS, CB5 recognizes that this installation has become extremely popular with New Yorkers and millions of visitors to NYC from all over the world; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval by NYC LPC of a "Permanent Temporary" facility permit for Bryant Park, 40 West 42 Street, for the placement of ice rink, restaurant, and holiday shops.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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104 West 40th Street, application for an exterior louver master plan

WHEREAS, The Springs Mills Building, 104 West 40th Street, constructed in 1962, was designed by the prominent New York architectural firm, Harrison & Abramowitz, who collaborated on many significant mid-20th Century projects in New York, including structures at Rockefeller Center, the United Nations, Lincoln Center, Columbia University and the State Capital of New York at Albany; and

WHEREAS, This building was designated an individual NYC Landmark March 13, 2010  adding its distinctive chamfered tower to the city's growing list of Modern buildings under landmark protection; and

WHEREAS, Its current owners, Savannah Partners, have applied to LPC for approval of a Master Plan to install louvers on the westerly facade of the building, the side not visible from Bryant Park, from the 11th to the 20th floors with other louvers for the lower floors to be placed facing an interior courtyard exterior wall, not visible at all from the public way; and

WHEREAS, Any existing louvers, now randomly located, will be replaced with glass and all the louvers will be placed harmoniously in a vertical pattern at the southerly portion of the western facade to minimize the visual appearance from the street; and

WHEREAS, The louvers will cover mechanical equipment needed to ventilate and air condition the building and will measure 18" X 19 3/4" and will be a dark green grey in color; and 

WHEREAS, The louvers will be installed as tenants require them on a floor by floor basis in horizontal bands above three adjacent windows on each floor; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the Louver Master Plan for 104 West 40th Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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230 Park Avenue, (the former Helmsley Building and the former New York Central Building) application to install new electrical equipment, including transformers and switchgear on the east side of the 16th floor roof

WHEREAS, 230 Park Avenue (between East 45th and East 46th Streets), formerly known as the New York Central Building, then known as the New York General Building, more recently known as the Helmsley Building, has been an individual NYC Landmark since its designation March 31, 1987, designed by Warren and Wetmore as part of the complex of buildings surrounding Grand Central Station, also designed by these same architects; and

WHEREAS, Built in 1929 as the luxurious headquarters for the New York Central Railroad, 230 Park Avenue is a 34-story office building strategically straddling Park Avenue at East 46th Street to East 45th Street, offering a premier location as a direct connection to Grand Central Terminal; and

WHEREAS. The building requires a major electrical service upgrade including two new feeders, four transformers and switching gear to continue its use as a major Class A office building and after extensive study, its owners and architects, Beyer, Blinder, Belle, have determined that the best location for the new equipment would be on the east side of the 16th story roof setback which is halfway up the 34 story building; and

WHEREAS, This roof already contains other mechanical and electrical equipment and the impact of the 3 foot raised platform and the housing for the new electrical equipment is not deemed detrimental to the overall appearance of the building as indicated in photographs of mock-ups of the 3 ft. high platform and the 7 1/2 and 10 1/2 ft. housing additions on the rooftop; and

WHEREAS, Photographs showing  mock-ups of the proposed additions indicate a minimal visual negative impact; however, the mock-ups themselves were removed before CB 5 had an opportunity to see them in place,  which CB 5 takes issue with; and

WHEREAS, LPC staff usually is given the authority to approve electrical and mechanical equipment placement on the roof tops of individual Landmarks, the Commission required a Public Hearing in this instance because the owner of another Landmark, 280 Broadway, recently installed a roof top cooling tower without LPC approval, and LPC now wants a full Public review of such additions on prominent Landmarks such as this; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the roof top additions to the easterly side of the 16th floor roof top at 230 Park Avenue for the installation and housing of new electrical equipment.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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NYC Parks and AT&T - proposal to bring free Wi-Fi coverage to portions of Central Park.

WHEREAS, Central Park is a NYC Scenic Landmark and has had two temporary WIFI installations since November and December 2011, provided by AT&T, at the Zoo and Mineral Springs (Pain Quotidian) Snack Bar locations, along with 24 other WIFI installations at other parks in the City, in all the boroughs; and

WHEREAS, These roof top locations were determined by their expected access by potential internet users in the parks, either waiting to purchase tickets at the zoo or using the Sheep Meadow; and

WHEREAS, These devices, with a range of 200 ft., measure 20" high, 5" wide and 5" deep, must be positioned in the line of sight of users to be effective, and although relatively small,  they have high visibility and cannot be concealed to be  less obtrusive; and

WHEREAS, The white color for the devices may be replaced by a more subtle color, at CB5's suggestion, to make them less noticeable; and 

WHEREAS, This approval is for a five year period and any future WIFI device installation may be less problematic if new technologies are developed in this time period to provide this amenity to the general public; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the placement of two roof top devices for WIFI coverage on one of the buildings at the Central Park Zoo and on the roof of the Mineral Springs Snack Bar.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 37 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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February 2012

45 West 21st Street, (Ladies' Mile Historic District) - Application for installation of signage

WHEREAS, 45 West 21st Street, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, is a six-story Beaux-Arts store and loft building built in 1902; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is seeking approval from the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to install exterior signage; and

WHEREAS, Currently there is no exterior signage on the building; and

WHEREAS, The proposed signage includes a 20 foot by 2 foot painted metal, non-illuminated blade sign on the western corner of the building, and pin-mounted, cast aluminum, LED back-lit letters measuring no greater than 15 inches by 8 feet above the first floor cornice at each of the two commercial entrances; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has represented that the signage is proposed for two new small retail tenants; and

WHEREAS, Although no signage was present on the building at the time of construction or designation, there is historic precedent for the location of the proposed signage based on photographs of similar signage on the building in the 1940s and 1950s: a similar (but illuminated) blade sign was present in the proposed location in the 1950s, and similar above-the-cornice (non-illuminated) signage was present in the proposed locations on the building in the 1940s; and

WHEREAS, There is an illuminated blade sign of similar size on the building at 57 West 21st Street (two buildings to the west of 45 West 21st Street); and

WHEREAS, Although Community Board Five is concerned that the above-the-cornice signage may extend in front of a portion of four windows on the second floor and would prefer that this signage instead be installed below the cornice, the Applicant has represented that these windows belong to commercial rather than residential tenants, and the plans indicate that only a small portion (less than 15 inches high) at the bottom of the windows may be affected by the pin letters; and

WHEREAS, Although Community Board Five would prefer that all signage on the building be non-illuminated and that the blade sign be smaller, it found the proposed back-lighting of the pin letters and the proposed size of the blade sign  to be appropriate for Ladies' Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The Community Board Five considers the proposed signage to be appropriate for the Ladies Mile Historic District based on historic precedent and similar signage currently found within the Ladies' Mile Historic District; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the proposed signage for 45 West 21st Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 22 in favor; 9 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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50 West 23rd Street, application for exterior renovation

WHEREAS, An application has been submitted to The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission seeking permission to remove and replace existing elements of the exterior façade of 50 West 23rd Street, located between Fifth Avenue and Avenue of the Americas, in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The building known as 50 West 23rd Street is composed of two structures:

1.      A eleven story through block building located at 48-54 West 23rd Street and 37-41 West 22nd Street, designed by Walter Monroe Cory of Cory & Cory Architects, and erected in 1954-56 for the Frank Shattuck Corporation, and

2.      A thirteen story building located at 43-49 West 22nd Street, designed by Russell G. Cory of Cory & Cory Architects, and erected in 1925-26 for the Frank Shattuck Corporation; and

WHEREAS, The buildings which had originally been used as a bakery, candy factory, food processing plant, and offices, notably for Schrafft's, were constructed with crème colored cast concrete façades, predominantly Moderne in style, with some Art Deco elements; and

WHEREAS, At the present time, the existing conditions are resultant of a 1970s renovation, which added a stone base course, and steel canopies to the building at 48-54 West 23rd Street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed renovations would include removal and replacement of the existing façade cladding, three storefronts, lobby entry, and four canopies at the ground floor of 48-54 West 23rd Street; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new façade cladding would be dark grey, smooth finished Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete ("GFRC") panel, with sandblasted triangular patterned detailing; and

WHEREAS, The three proposed new storefronts would be almost entirely composed of glass, which would sit on top of a +/- 4" high stainless steel base; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new canopies would be composed of glass which has a white dot pattern scored by clear areas forming triangular patterned detailing; and

WHEREAS, The new canopies are proposed to be illuminated with LED fixtures; and

WHEREAS, Signage for the three retail tenants would be blade signs that are incorporated into the new canopies as well as signage applied to the interior of the storefront glass; and

WHEREAS, In addition to the proposed renovation of 48-54 West 23rd Street, at the entry to the 43-49 West 22nd Street building, the applicant proposes to install a new white dot patterned glass canopy; and

WHEREAS, Although the glass storefronts in many of the buildings in the Ladies Mile Historic District typically sit on top of a substantial base course, storefronts in many Moderne industrial building erected in the 1950s have minimal base courses, similar to the proposed +/- 4" high stainless steel base; and

WHEREAS, The proposed illuminated glass canopies with triangular patterned detailing seem somewhat contemporary in style, and a departure from the otherwise subtle detailing in the existing historic fabric of the building; and

WHEREAS, Although the usage of GFRC panels for the ground floor façade of this predominantly historic cast concrete structure may seem appropriate and distinguishing the base of a building from the upper portion through contrasting color can be seen throughout the Ladies Mile Historic District, we believe that the proposed façade's sandblasted triangular patterned detailing would be inharmonious with this landmark; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for permission to remove and replace the exterior façade of 50 West 23rd Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 31 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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183 Madison Avenue, AKA 181-183 Madison Avenue, 44-46 East 34th Street and 31 East 33rd Street, Madison Belmont Building, Certificate of Appropriateness for Storefront Modifications

WHEREAS, The Madison Belmont Building, 183 Madison Avenue, AKA 181-183 Madison Avenue, 44-46 East 34th Street and 31 East 33rd Street, has been an individual and first floor interior landmark since September 2011; and

WHEREAS, The Belmont was built in 1924-25 and designed by Warren & Wetmore (Grand Central Station, among others) and in the designation report for the Belmont the Landmarks Preservation Commission stated that:

                        ...the Madison Belmont Building is a unique, transitional style

                        building that includes classical ornament derived from the

                        Renaissance executed in an unusual, highly-stylized manner,

                        combining it with one of the earliest New York examples of Art

                        Deco designs applied to architecture... [and] also reflects the

                        contributions of Parisian Edgar Brandt, master iron smith in the

                        Art Deco style...The three-story base of this building is quite distinct

                        from the upper floors.  Faced with granite, the lower floors are almost

                        completely filled by large display windows....[T]he display windows

                        are highlighted by Brandt's unique iron and gilded bronze frames

                        that rise uninterrupted for the first three floors.  Brandt also created

                        unusual iron gates with geometric motifs beneath the large first

                        floor windows ...; and

 

WHEREAS, The proposed alterations involve creating two ADA compliant entrances in the 34th Street façade in Bay 2 (east end) and Bay 6 (west end) by replacing the existing bays with frameless power-assisted glass doors, recessed four feet, and matching the adjacent hardware and decorative trim, with bronze circular handles and bronze lettering over the doors; and

WHEREAS, All of the removed materials (including the removed metal scrollwork, along the base of the façade) will be stored on site for possible future re-use; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant didn't provide to CB5 a rendering of what the 34th Street façade would look like with the two new doors and also didn't provide samples of the materials to be used; and

WHEREAS, Without a detailed rendering of the proposed 34th Street façade, and a review of the proposed materials, it is not possible to determine whether the modifications are appropriate for this landmarked building; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, CB5 recommends denial of a Certificate of Appropriateness for the storefront modifications to the Madison Belmont Building, 183 Madison Avenue, AKA 181-183 Madison Avenue, 44-46 East 34th Street and 31 East 33rd Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 29 in favor; 2 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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636 Avenue of the Americas, application for rooftop addition

WHEREAS, 636 Avenue of the Americas, is located within the Ladies Mile Historic District, with facades on Avenue of the Americas (extending 68 feet) and West 19th Street (extending 152 feet), and is a six-story neo-Renaissance store building, constructed in 1896, designed by Buchman and Deisler and named the Alexander Building, after the person who acquired the building in 1897 for use as a shoe store; and

WHEREAS, This application is to remove and replace obsolete and unsightly rooftop mechanical equipment with a modest 3,300 sq. ft. rooftop addition; and   

WHEREAS, The addition is set back so as not to be visible from the public way on the South, East and West; and 

WHEREAS, The addition, on a secondary elevation, is partially visible from a constricted area four blocks away (at 23rd Street); and

WHEREAS, The portion visible is a solid (un-fenestrated wall) on the lot-line and does not visually extend above the roof top addition behind it and is therefore almost un-noticeable; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a rooftop addition at 636 Avenue of the Americas.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 31 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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March 2012

1 West 22nd St., application for facade renovation

WHEREAS, 1 West 22nd Street is a twenty foot wide 3-story store and loft building located near Fifth Avenue in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, built in 1904 in the Beaux Arts style characteristic of the period; and

WHEREAS, The owner has applied to LPC for approval of facade renovations including stucco scraping and repair, stripping, repair cleaning and repainting of all surfaces including masonry and metal; and

WHEREAS, The current non-historic storefront will be removed and replaced with a three part new design including a display window and two doors, one for the retail entrance and the other for access to the upper two floors; and

WHEREAS, The storefront finishes will match the existing bronze color used at the building and three new "Barn Light" lighting fixtures will have a black matte finish; renovations will include black painted aluminum bulkheads, a new fiberglass cornice to be installed over the storefront based on the 1940's era Tax Map Photo and a new sign band will be installed finished with 6 in. high brushed aluminum lettering; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the facade renovation design for 1 West 22nd Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 31 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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23 West 23rd St., Ladies' Mile Historic District - application for storefront construction

WHEREAS, 23 West 23rd Street is a four-story commercial building, converted from an Italianate dwelling built between 1860- 1862, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, between Avenue of the Americas and Fifth Avenue; and

WHEREAS, The first floor, a 3-bay storefront, is not original to the residential building or the 1874 commercial conversion nor the 1903 redesign as a loft and retail building; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new storefront maintains a three-bay configuration consisting of a framed display window and two framed glass doors, one for the retail store and the other for access to the upper floors; and

WHEREAS, The lintels and pier configuration mimic the proportions and placement of the historic upper stories; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a new storefront at 23 West 23rd Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 31 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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29 East 20th St., application to remove LPC violations and restore the ground front storefront

WHEREAS, The owner of 29 East 20th Street, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, has applied to LPC  to cure a series of violations affecting the façade and the ground floor storefront; and

WHEREAS, The applicant proposed to remove the four outstanding violations including: an illegal blade sign, an unapproved storefront  modification including two large globes, an illegal flag pole and banner, as well as non-conforming windows on the second, third and fourth floors and to restore the building to a condition approximating its state prior to aforementioned violations; and

WHEREAS, The proposed removal of the unauthorized building additions and modifications would be much more harmonious with the existing historic fabric of the building; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is preparing the space for a new tenant and he agreed to present any future changes to the façade and storefront to Community Board Five and LPC; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for permission to remove the above cited violations and restore the ground front storefront of 29 East 20th Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 29 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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156 5th Avenue, Ladies' Mile Historic District, application for signage and lighting

WHEREAS, 156 Fifth Avenue is a 13 story Romanesque Revival commercial building located on the NW corner of West 20th Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, built in 1895, and was formerly known as the Presbyterian Building named after its original owner; and

WHEREAS, A new retail tenant, Nike, is applying to LPC for approval of two LED illuminated "halo" type signs to be placed in the windows of the store featuring the Nike signature logo with the Nike "swoosh" measuring 20 in. by 3 in.; and

WHEREAS, There is a precedent for LPC approval of similar signage and lighting; and

WHEREAS, This signage is not subject to LPC staff approval and requires a Public Hearing and approval by the LPC Commissioners; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the signage and lighting at 156 Fifth Avenue.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 31 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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January 2012

5 WEST 21ST STREET, BETWEEN FIFTH AVENUE AND AVENUE OF THE AMERICAS (LADIES' MILE HISTORIC DISTRICT) - APPLICATION FOR STOREFRONT RENOVATION

WHEREAS, 5 West 21st Street, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, is an Italianate style dwelling built in 1851 and was altered in 1919 with the construction of a two-story storefront extension;

WHEREAS, Greensquare Tavern, replacing a prior tenant, Shaffer City, is seeking approval from The NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to replace non-historic storefront infill; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant has prepared two different storefront schemes for LPC consideration, one with fixed doors and the other with folding doors, and CB5 prefers the fixed door scheme since it is deemed more faithful to the historical character of the District, although when the doors in each scheme are in closed position the appearance is essentially the same ; and

WHEREAS, The design, following a five bay rhythm, includes raising the transom above the building entrance, a new awning within the storefront bay, new signage above the storefront, masonry repair, painted copper green and dark forest green aluminum framing around new windows and ADA compliant doors at the easterly side of the storefront; and

WHEREAS, The proposed changes for the street level bar and restaurant, as presented to CB5, will be visible from Fifth Avenue and are deemed an improvement over the existing storefront condition and appear harmonious with other storefronts in the Historic District; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the storefront renovations for 5 West 21st Street in the Ladies' Mile Historic District.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 27 in favor; 6 opposed; 2 abstaining.

 

 

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11 East 26th Street (Madison Square North Historic District) Application The Museum Of Mathematics For A New Storefront

WHEREAS, 11 East 26th Street, between Fifth and Madison Avenues, is a 21 story 1912-1913 era neo-Gothic building located in the Madison Square North Historic District, facing Madison Square Park, which is immediately across the street to the south; and

WHEREAS, Its new ground floor tenant, the Museum of Mathematics, is leasing the premises which runs through-block to 6 East 27th Street for ten years and has applied to NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) for approval of a new storefront; and

WHEREAS, The proposed renovations include installation of a large glass rectangular window, with a layer of reflective film placed between the two glass window plates for illumination purposes, surrounded by a strip of bronze ribbon going around the glass; and

WHEREAS, The name of the Museum would be placed in the stone panel above the storefront, portions of the stonework adjacent to the glass window to the left and the right are to be restored and some minor renovation work would also be done on the West 27th Street facade; and 

WHEREAS, The Applicant is proposing to have a modern glass door entrance to the Museum, completely different from the two other doorways to the building; and

WHEREAS, CB5 finds that the large, modern storefront and doorway concept is not in keeping with neo-Gothic design of the building nor the character of the Historic District and, clearly, the Applicant wishes to capitalize on exposing as much of the interior as possible to obtain high visibility to attract future patrons; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, CB5 recommends denial of the Application for the new storefront and doorway for 11 East 26th Street in the Madison Square North Historic District, since it is deemed too modern in its design and materials and incompatible with the rest of the Historic District.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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40 West 22nd Street (Ladies' Mile Historic District), Application for Replacement Of Awning/Marquee

WHEREAS, 40 West 22nd Street (between 5th & 6th Avenues) is a 12-story neo-Renaissance store and loft building, located within the Ladies' Mile Historic District and characteristic of the later development phase of the district; and

WHEREAS, The building, designed by Korn & Zipkes and constructed in 1909-10, is 46 feet wide, faced in stone and buff-colored brick, has a three-story base framed in a heavy rusticated stone architrave with a keystone supporting a stone parapet with balusters at each end; and

WHEREAS, The building successfully applied for, and has completed, renovations to the lower levels of the façade in 2009; and

WHEREAS, The owners are now requesting permission to replace the previous awning with a new awning/marquee that provides shelter for tenants and guests while continuing the design approach of the above-noted new entryway; and

WHEREAS, The focus of this work was to replace additions that distracted from the original building details with elements that are consonant with the original design; and

WHEREAS, The proposed awning/marquee will be 3'8" x 5'3" and consist of canvas mounted within a fenestration area of the façade of glass, metal and wood framed by rusticated stone; and

WHEREAS, The new awning/marquee will be restrained in keeping with the original building design and be approximately 8" in height; and

WHEREAS, Subdued lighting will be included under and within the awning/marquee; and

WHEREAS, The awning/marquee will serve as a sound buffer for occupants living above the entry way so that noise from visitors using the intercom will be reduced; and

WHEREAS, The installation will not require any alterations to the building or original materials; therefore be it

RESOLVED, That Community Board 5 recommends approval of the application for the replacement of the awning/marquee at 40 West 22nd Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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200 Fifth Avenue (Ladies' Mile Historic District) - Application For The Modification Of The Building Entrances On W. 23rd And W. 24th, and For The Use Of The W. 24th Street Vestibule Entrance As Cafe/Restaurant Space

 

WHEREAS, 200 Fifth Avenue is a 15-story retail and office building, completed in 1909, designed by the architects, Maynicke & Franke, in Neo-Renaissance style; and

WHEREAS, For many years the building was  known as The International Toy Center and more recently it has become the home of "Eataly," a very popular purveyor of food and an eating establishment located in the ground floor of the building ; and

WHEREAS, There are two separate entrance doors on the side streets:

a)      West 23rd Street has  a modern sliding glass door

b)      West 24th Street has a more historical revolving door; and

WHEREAS, The owner had previously agreed to preserve the ornamental metal gates and the vestibule spaces with their coffered, vaulted ceilings at both the West 23rd and West 24th Street entrances; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant is requesting LPC approval to exchange the two entrance doors on West 23rd and West 24th Streets for the following purposes:

            a) Having the revolving door located at the West 23rd Street entrance would be more energy            efficient from a heat loss standpoint;

            b) Moving the sliding doors to West 24th Street would enable the vestibule area to be            incorporated into Eataly as seasonal cafe/restaurant space , whereas currently it only    functions as storage space; the ornamental gates would be kept in locked position so that this   building entrance would be enclosed to contain the dining area; and

WHEREAS, CB5 considers the proposed changes both practical and in the public interest; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for 200 Fifth Avenue to exchange the two side street entrance doors on West 23rd and West 24th Streets and to permit the West 24th Street entrance vestibule area to be used for a seasonal cafe/restaurant dining area.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 32 in favor; 1 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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210 Fifth Avenue (Madison Square North Historic District) Between West 25th And West 26 Streets - Application For A Certificate Of Appropriateness For An Alteration To The Penthouse Apartment.

WHEREAS, 210 Fifth Avenue (aka 1132 Broadway) is an 11 story commercial building, constructed in 1903, now converted to retail/residential use, located in the Madison Square North Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The owner of the penthouse apartment on the 11th floor of the building is seeking to renovate and expand the premises by 152 sq. ft.; and

WHEREAS, The exterior walls are in poor condition in various places and demolition and new construction will remedy this problem; and

WHEREAS, The proposed placement of new windows and use of new materials will improve the appearance of the building; and

WHEREAS, The increase in size of the penthouse from 748 to 900 sq. ft. is within the allowable FAR for this building; and

WHEREAS, The new construction will not be visible from the Public Way, except for views of the southerly elevation at some distance from the building; and

WHEREAS, The proposed profile of the new penthouse, as seen in mockups, and new window placement is deemed to be more visually attractive and harmonious with rest of the Historic District than the existing condition; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for a certificate of appropriateness for an alteration of a penthouse apartment at 210 Fifth Avenue.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

 

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THE AEOLIAN BUILDING, 689-691 FIFTH AVENUE (A/K/A 1 EAST 54TH STREET), APPLICATION FOR REMOVAL AND REPLACEMENT OF GROUND FLOOR STOREFRONT

WHEREAS, An application has been submitted to The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission seeking permission to remove and replace the ground front storefront of The Aeolian Building, located at 689-691 Fifth Avenue at the northeast corner of East 54th Street; and

WHEREAS, The Aeolian Building, built in 1925-27 by the James Baird Construction Co. to the design of Warren & Wetmore Architects, is a fourteen story commercial building in a Neo-Classical style with French Renaissance style detailing; clad in Indiana Limestone, Italian Marble spandrel panels, and a buff-colored terra-cotta upper portion; and

WHEREAS, In 1984, Paul Goldberger of The New York Times described the Aeolian Building as "a lyrical gem that may be the city's most inventive merging of modern commercial design with French and classical architectural detail... as good a reminder as New York has that architecture can be exuberant and fanciful yet discreet and well-mannered"; and

WHEREAS, On December 10, 2002, The Aeolian Building was designated as an individual Landmark by The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission; and

WHEREAS, 689-691 Fifth Avenue was the headquarters of The Aeolian Company, a leading manufacturer of roll-operated instruments, until 1938, and since 1930, this building had been location of the flagship Elizabeth Arden Red Door Salon; and

WHEREAS, Throughout the years, the building has been operated by several different owners, and there have been modifications to the ground floor storefronts, accommodating varying usages for retail tenants, including a 1938 remodeling by the architect Robert Carson for an I. Miller & Son's shoe store, and subsequently the travertine clad façade installed in 1970, designed by Ernest Castro of Weisberg Castro Associates for Gucci; and

WHEREAS, At this time the applicant proposes to remove the existing Moderne styled travertine clad façade and to replace this with a more Neo-Classical styled façade composed of Indiana Limestone pilasters and a Deer Isle Granite watertable; and

 

WHEREAS, The applicant is also proposing to install rectangular glass and steel canopy above the entrance and lobby of the office building, located at the extreme east of the East 54th Street side of the building; and

WHEREAS, Within the interior of the proposed modified building entrance, it has been proposed to include an illuminated feature wall; and

WHEREAS, There has been some expressed preference for a rounded, highly decorative canopy on East 54th Street, similar to the one which The Aeolian Company showroom had in the 1930's, and likewise, there has been some expressed concern that the proposed illuminated feature wall seems to be a contrast to the building's Neo Classical and French Renaissance style detailing; and

WHEREAS, Despite these concerns, it appears that the proposed new storefront would be much more harmonious with the existing historic fabric of the richly detailed building above; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That Community Board Five recommends approval of the application for permission to remove and replace the ground front storefront of The Aeolian Building, located at 689-691 Fifth Avenue.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 33 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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December 2011

52 West 21st Street, between 5th & 6th Aves., Ladies Mile Historic District - Application to legalize façade

WHEREAS, the owners of 52 West 21st Street, located in the Ladies Mile Historic District, have applied to LPC to legalize the façade of the building and appeared at CB 5 May 12, 2011 and the previous building owners appeared at CB 5 December 13, 2007, to obtain Approval for facade renovations; and

WHEREAS, on each of the two occasions that CB 5 reviewed the Application and the building work that had been done by each of the owners, Approval was Denied (35-0-1 at the May 12, 2011 Full Board Meeting); and

WHEREAS,the Applicant failed to appear at the November 29, 2011 Landmarks Committee Meeting of CB 5 to explain what if any changes have been made in the building design or condition since the last time the matter was presented to CB 5; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, CB 5 recommends to LPC that the Application by 52 West 21st Street, Ladies Mile Historic District to legalize façade be Denied. (For reference purposes the May 12, 2011 Resolution of CB 5 is shown below:

WHEREAS, 52 West 21st Street is a five-story commercial/loft retail and residential building located in the Ladies Mile Historic District; and

WHEREAS, The previous owner appeared before CB5 and was denied approval by CB5 on December 13, 2007 for repairs, renovation and restoration of the facade for reasons detailed in the CB5 Resolution set forth below; and

WHEREAS, Exterior renovations were done without conforming to the requirements of the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission and the current owner is now seeking to "legalize" these facade modifications; and

WHEREAS, The scope of work that was performed improved the appearance of the building which had been in a severely deteriorated condition, but did not meet the required architectural drawings, plans, details and specifications presented to LPC, since they failed to include:

                                    1. Decorative spandrels between the floors

                                    2. Window sash, frames and mullions as depicted 

                                    3. Sign band above the ground floor storefront

                                    4. Panel bulkheads at ground floor

                                    5. Deep cornices

                                    6. Use of appropriate Historic materials and colors throughout the facade; and

WHEREAS, The current appearance of the building is out of character with the Historic District, especially with the two immediately adjacent buildings; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application to legalize facade renovations at 52 West 21st Street. (Denied:  Vote: 35-0-1 Abstention)

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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214 West 42nd Street, the New Amsterdam Theater, Application to replace existing light-boxes on marquee with new LED panels

WHEREAS, the New Amsterdam Theater, 214 West 42nd Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues, in the NYC Theater District, has been an individual NYC Landmark since 1979; and

WHEREAS, the theater is owned by 42nd Street Development Corporation and is operated under a long term lease by the Disney Corporation, which currently has a long running Broadway Show, "Mary Poppins", appearing at the theater; and

WHEREAS, Disney has applied to LPC for approval to replace the existing light boxes on the non-historical marquee which would update and improve the illumination for performances taking place at the theater; and

WHEREAS, the illumination would be modern LED type lighting to program current shows and other occasional performances taking place at the theater and may also be used to announce other Disney shows playing in New York City; and 

WHEREAS, Disney agrees that the LED panels on the marquee would not be used for advertising purposes; and 

WHEREAS, CB 5 recommends that the signage be "static" in nature and not animated; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application to replacing existing light-boxes on marquee with new LED panels at the New Amsterdam Theater, 214 West 42nd Street.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 36 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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1179 Broadway (Madison Square North Historic District) Application for façade renovation.

WHEREAS, 1179 Broadway is located in the Madison Square North Historic District on the west side of Broadway between West 28th and West 29th Streets and is a four-story store and office building, originally constructed in the mid-1800's as part of the Coleman House hotel complex and extensively renovated in 1926; and

WHEREAS, in 1926 when many of the area's commercial buildings were being given new facades, the building was covered with stucco facing that was subsequently altered with another "Garden State Brickface" type stucco re-facing, scored to resemble bricks; and

WHEREAS, the LPC June 26, 2001 Designation Report states that "the storefronts and stucco are non-historic"; and

WHEREAS, the NYC Department of Buildings has served the owners with violations as a result of serious structural conditions necessitating the placement of emergency scaffolding at the base of the building; and

WHEREAS, these conditions include cracking of the stucco, bowing outward of the front of the building, water infiltration and decay of bricks and steel at the headers; and

WHEREAS, after consultations with LPC Staff, the owners are applying to replace the building facade with stucco (which will not be scored) the color of limestone, matching the appearance of the facade as it was in 1926; and

WHEREAS, as part of the renovation, all upper floor windows above the storefront will be replaced with fixed glass wood framed windows, not pivoting, to conform to the NYC Building code by allowing child safety railing protection; and

WHEREAS, the applicant has agreed to retain a professional Architectural Conservator to document the existing materials that will be re used in the new facade and supervise the material's removal, storage and replacement, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five r