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50 Rockefeller Plaza, b/t 50th and 51st Street, application to install a new door surround to the north commercial space, an outdoor café, a service door and signage

WHEREAS, 50 Rockefeller Plaza (the Associated Press Building) in the landmarked Rockefeller Center was completed in 1938, is located in the north section of Rockefeller Plaza between 50th and 51st Street on the west side of the Plaza, and has over its main entrance on the Plaza (recessed by one bay between the corner wings) a two-story 10-ton stainless-steel sculpture by Isamu Noguchi of five figures representing the people who gather, edit, and distribute the news; and

WHEREAS, 50 Rockefeller Plaza has made an application to the Landmarks Preservation Commission in connection with a new restaurant tenant in the building's north commercial space at Rockefeller Plaza at 51st Street to install:

WHEREAS, The new door surround at the north commercial space will substantially mimic the primary door surround at Anthropologie at the south end of the building, and create a balance for the entrances to the building's two main retail spaces on Rockefeller Plaza; and

WHEREAS, The proposed outdoor sidewalk café will be substantially similar to the existing Brasserie Ruhlmann outdoor café diagonally across Rockefeller Plaza at 50th Street; and

WHEREAS, An outdoor café is a common amenity in Rockefeller Center, which has several outdoor cafes (the Brasserie Ruhlmann at 50th Street and Rockefeller Plaza, the cafés in the skating rink, and Morells at 49th Street between Fifth Avenue and Rockefeller Plaza), within two blocks of the proposed outdoor café at the building; and

WHEREAS, The Applicant considered several ways of providing a necessary service door for the proposed outdoor café, including installing a new door on the right side of the main façade (which could be made to match an existing brass door on the left side of the main façade), and concluded it didn't want to change the main façade of the building and that the best location would be on the building's north corner wing by modifying an existing storefront window; and

WHEREAS, The proposed pin-mounted bronze signage for the new commercial tenant will match the current signage on the Anthropologie retail space on the south end of the buildings; and

WHEREAS, The proposed new nickel-silver door surround, outdoor café, and signage are similar to and harmonious with existing door surrounds, outdoor cafes, and signage in Rockefeller Center and, in addition, the proposed new service door and modified storefront window do not change the main façade of the building and the placement in the building's north corner wing does not adversely affect the basic fabric of the building; and

WHEREAS, The applicant has agreed to install two curb cuts at the building's main entry and at the north commercial space in order to accommodate disabled persons; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the application of 50 Rockefeller Plaza to install a new door surround to the north commercial space, an outdoor café, a new service door, two curb cuts and new signage for the north commercial space.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 25 in favor; 10 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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