41-45 West 17th Street and 38-42 West 18th Street, application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to construct a new building and to restore two historic buildings
At the regularly scheduled monthly meeting of Community Board Five on Thursday, September 11, 2014, the following resolution passed with a vote of: 36 in favor, 1 opposed, 1 abstained.
WHEREAS, 41 West 17th Street, located in the Ladies' Mile Historic District, is presently a parking lot running through to West 18th Street; 45 West 17th Street is a 6-story block-thru building constructed in 1907 currently occupied by Adorama, a retail camera business, and commercial offices; and
WHEREAS, 38 West 18th Street is presently a parking lot running through to 17th Street; 40 West 18th Street is a 4-story cast iron façade building constructed in 1858 currently occupied by Adorama and commercial offices; 42 West 18th Street is a 6-story block-thru building with a façade made of white terra cotta, also occupied by Adorama and commercial offices; and
WHEREAS, The proposed new development will occupy the current parking lots at 41-43 West 17th Street through to 38 West 18th Street.; and
WHEREAS, The proposed building will be composed of two towers with facades on 17th Street and 18th Street:
- at 41-43 West 17th Street, the proposed tower would be 18 stories and 185' in height, with a glass façade and clad with a modern wire mesh-layer elements, and
- at 38 West 18th St., the proposed tower would be 17 stories (170'), to be constructed using pre-cast concrete with a tapered profile, and increasing window size from bottom to top; and
WHEREAS, Community Board Five is concerned about preserving and maintaining the historic character of the Ladies' Mile Historic District which is composed of predominately cast-iron, stone, brick and concrete façades; and
WHEREAS, Community Board Five finds the height of the proposed building not contextual; and
WHEREAS, Community Board Five deems the proposed design and materials, namely the use of wire mesh for the 18th St. facade, the fenestration design of the 17th St. facade and the height for the new construction to be inappropriate for the character of the Historic District; therefore be it
RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends denial of the request by the applicant to construct a new building at 41-45 West 17th Street and 38-42 West 18th Street, utilizing the proposed design and materials.