LPC Turns Its Back on Underground Railroad Houses

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In one of the bigger disses we’ve seen recently, Landmarks Preservation Commission head Robert Tierney sent an “unusually prompt and decisive” letter (reproduced on the jump) to the president of the New York Landmarks Conservancy indicating that LPC would not support the preservation of 227, 231 and 233 Duffield Street in Downtown Brooklyn. The buildings have been the subject of an ongoing struggle between preservationists who argue that they should be saved because of their role Brooklyn’s Underground Railroad and the city which wants to seize them via eminent domain to tear them down to make way for a hotel parking lot. Tierney doesn’t even suggest any intermediate steps like pushing for more research or documentation or suggesting the houses be moved to an alternate site. What’s his solution? A plaque. “I believe the commemoration of the important role Brooklyn has played in the history of abolitionism will be better served by the program of memorialization referenced by EDC and the City Council than by preserving the thee building,” he wrote. Isn’t LPC supposed to be a non-political group? Sounds to us like Bloomberg’s got Tierney by the balls on this one.
LPC Rebuffs Underground Railroad Houses [Gowanus Lounge]
Undergound RR: Consultants Caught In Another Lie [Brownstoner]
LPC Head Tries To Save Underground RR Site [Brownstoner]

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