Big turnout at City hearing against proposed 11-story undulating glass tower, but no decision yet
More than sixty people turned out for the Landmarks Preservation Commission hearing this Tuesday regarding Hines Development Co.’s proposal to build an 11-story, 128 ft. tall undulating glass-walled apartment building at 122 Greenwich Avenue, at 13th Street and 8th Avenue, in the Greenwich Village Historic District (CLICK HERE for pictures of the proposed design). Testimony presented to the Commission overwhelmingly called for the current design to be changed or rejected, with only four of several dozen people testifying in favor of the current design.
GVSHP testified strongly against the design, citing the original designation report of the Greenwich Village Historic District to show that the original landmark designation was intended to prevent this type of visually incompatible development and to preserve the character of the neighborhood. GVSHP also provided the Commissioners with a map of the West Village showing how the location and street pattern of the area would make this development uniquely visible for blocks around, therefore increasing the need to ensure that the design is compatible with the predominant character of the historic West Village (CLICK HERE). Additionally, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Borough President Scott Stringer, Assemblymember Deborah Glick, and several neighborhood and preservation organizations sent testimony opposing the current design. However, the New York Landmarks Conservancy and the NYC Chapter of the American Institute of Architects did testify in support of the current design.
The Commission did not to vote on the application at the hearing, and with the exception of one Commissioner who expressed a favorable inclination towards the design, none commented upon it. Instead, after two hours of public testimony, the hearing was closed, and the Commission agreed to discuss the item at a future public meeting, the date of which has not yet been announced. GVSHP will continue to closely monitor the review process for this proposal and inform the public about any developments, decisions, or changes. In spite of the strong public turnout against the current design at the hearing, the Commission’s ultimate decision remains far from clear, though it is very clear that the current proposal, by a prominent architect and developer, is being taken very seriously by the Commission.
HOW TO HELP:
- WRITE TO THE LANDMARKS PRESERVATION COMMISSION NOW, before a decision is made, urging them to consider preservation of the character of the Greenwich Village Historic District their TOP priority in reviewing this proposal, and to reject or change the proposed design. CLICK HERE for a sample letter you can use, but please note that a personalized letter will have the greatest impact.
- SPREAD THE WORD — please post the flyer HERE in your building to encourage others to write and get involved.