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370-374 Park Avenue, American Express Big Red Rooster, application for storefront infill

WHEREAS, 370 Park Avenue, is an individual NYC Landmark (New York Racquet and Tennis Club) designed  by McKim, Mead & White, completed in 1918, located on the west side of Park Avenue (between E. 52nd and E. 53rd Streets); and

WHEREAS, American Express, a retail tenant in the building, has applied to the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission ("LPC") for approval of a new storefront design; and

WHEREAS, the existing storefront contains a blue fabric covered awning, which was added pre-designation, a double glass and steel door and an old ATM machine that has not been operational for years; and

WHEREAS, the proposed scope of work is to re-clad the awning with fabric of the same, existing blue color, add lighting to the underside of the awning, remove the old ATM machine and replace that area as well as the existing double door with a new, double door butt joint, glass and stainless steel entrance; and

WHEREAS, the proposed re-cladding of the awning and removal of the non-functioning ATM are consonant with the historic fabric of the building; and 

WHEREAS, the proposed addition of lighting to the awning and replacement of the existing entry door and ATM with a very modern looking, double glass door entrance are not considered complementary to the historic fabric of the building; and 

WHEREAS, the three entrance doorways should have a more cohesive, historically appropriate design that may be achieved with a master plan for all of the retail storefronts; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the application for American Express' storefront proposal at 370 Park Avenue since the proposed design is considered too modern, not harmonious with the other entry doors on Park Avenue and inappropriate for the historic character of the building.

The above resolution passed by a vote of 32 in favor; 2 opposed; 1 abstaining.

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