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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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