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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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