Pull up a chair and gab with fellow concerned citizens about the preservation issues near and dear to you at the 25th annual preservation conference.
It was a time in Brooklyn when two schoolteachers with adventurous spirits and a willingness to get their hands dirty could cobble together enough money to buy their own slice of the borough.
Historic preservation is not without controversy. Is it elitist? Does it hasten gentrification? Now, three new studies have looked at the facts.
As city agencies and community members continue to weigh the pros and cons of the East New York rezoning plan, the New York City Department of City Planning earlier this month released the final environmental impact statement, shedding light on the proposal’s potential effects on some of the area’s most landmark-eligible structures.
In a stunning turnaround and victory for preservationists in Brooklyn, the Landmarks Preservation Commission Tuesday voted to save six of the seven Brooklyn sites on its “backlog” list of 96 sites citywide. Initially, the commission’s new chair, de Blasio appointee Meenakshi Srinivasan, had planned to dump the whole bunch with no public hearings. Many had been on the commission’s calendar for more than 20 years.
Most notably, one of Brooklyn’s oldest structures, the Lady Moody House at 27 Gravesend Neck Road, got the green light for designation. The privately owned and occupied English farmhouse dates from Gravesend’s earliest days.
A young junior architect who grew up in East New York is leading the fight to landmark more than two dozen of the neighborhood’s architectural icons.
Spurred into action by the destruction of the historic East New York Savings Bank and Mayor de Blasio’s controversial rezoning plan, Zulmilena Then founded Preserving East New York (PENY) last year. Now with six members, the fledgling organization has caught the attention of the preservation nonprofit Historic Districts Council, which named East New York one of its 2016 “Six to Celebrate” earlier this month.
Just to be clear, getting the recognition of the Historic Districts Council is like finding out you have a landmarks fairy godmother — HDC’s mission is to help out local groups like PENY, and they’ll work with developers, the Landmarks Commission, and community members to protect spaces that need it.
Brownstoner caught up with the 29-year-old to hear more about her plans to work with the Mayor’s rezoning plan — not against it — to revitalize the area while preserving its historic character.
Residents and preservationists are pushing for landmarking in two previously unprotected neighborhoods, Crown Heights South and East New York.
A highly controversial bill that would regulate the Landmarks Preservation Commission, Intro 775, did not come to a vote Wednesday as expected but rather was “held over in committee,” the City Council website reveals. But the hearing was epic: It went on for six hours and was mobbed, mostly by opponents of the bill.
Opponents said the legislation would “strip the LPC of power to preserve our city’s landmarks,” in the words of one such opponent, preservation nonprofit Landmarks West, in an email Thursday. The LPC itself came out against the legislation during the hearing — an unexpected development.
The Park Slope Civic Council has put out a call for applications for the second annual Evelyn and Everett Ortner Park Slope Preservation Awards, which honor local projects compatible with the neighborhood’s architecture and efforts to preserve the area’s historic character.
Awards will be given in categories such as exterior restoration, adaptive reuse, storefront design and more. All projects must have been completed between January 1, 2010 and September 1, 2015, and applications are due November 2.
The clock is ticking for more than one proposed landmark. A bill setting time limits on how long the Landmarks Preservations Commission can take to consider landmarking a proposed site is coming up for a City Council vote Wednesday, September 9.
The American Institute of Architects, New York Landmarks Conservancy, Municipal Art Society, Historic Districts Council and more than 60 preservation groups recently voiced their opposition to the bill, known as Intro. 775, with memos and letters addressed to the City Council. And today the Times had a story looking at various sides of the issue.
What the Bill’s Backers Want
The review period for a proposed individual landmark could not exceed 360 days. A hearing would be required within 180 days. Historic districts — much more complex — would require a hearing within a year and a decision within two years.