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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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