We are pleased to hold our 32nd Annual Meeting & Awards Ceremony at The Cosmopolitan Club. The Regency Revival-style building was designed by architect Thomas Harlan Ellett in 1932 and is a fitting setting to recognize the fine restoration, renovation, and advocacy work on the Upper East Side over the past year.
Please join us in celebrating our awardees at this momentous occasion!
Tuesday, March 17th, 2015 The Cosmopolitan Club 122 East 66th Street 6:30 p.m.
Renaissance Award 124 East 70th Street
Good Neighbor Award Donohue’s Steakhouse
Renaissance Award El Barrio’s Artspace P.S. 109
Interior Award The Sherry-Netherland Hotel
Preservation Advocacy Award Historic Park Avenue
Streetscapes Award Christopher Gray
MEMBERS ONLY, RSVP REQUIRED
To become a member, visit our membership page.
FRIENDS, PROMINENT PRESERVATION GROUPS AND ELECTED OFFICIALS, SUPPORT NYC TO PREVENT DEMOLITION OF LANDMARK BUILDINGS
Friends of the Upper East Side Historic District (FRIENDS) and prominent local and national preservation groups, along with elected officials, have filed an amicus curiae brief on behalf of the City of New York in an ongoing battle to stop the demolition of two historic properties.
Joining FRIENDS in the amicus brief are Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, State Senator Liz Krueger, State Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, City Council Member Benjamin Kallos, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Preservation League of New York State, Historic Districts Council, Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, Landmark West!, and Friends of the First Avenue Estate.
The amicus brief was filed in response to a lawsuit launched against the City of New York by Stahl York Avenue after the City’s Landmark Preservation Commission (LPC) ruled against Stahl’s hardship application to demolish two buildings in the landmarked City and Suburban Homes First Avenue Estate. Stahl York Avenue claims the LPC ruling is “arbitrary and capricious,” resulting in an illegal taking of private property.
The buildings in question are Manhattan’s 429 East 64th Street and 430 East 65th Street, constructed by City and Suburban Homes Company in 1915 and designated as individual New York City landmarks by the LPC for the significance of their design, as well as their pioneering role in social housing reform.
“We fully support the sound and well-reasoned decision of the LPC to deny this hardship application,” said Tara Kelly, Executive Director of FRIENDS. “As the battle for the First Avenue Estate moves into the court, we will likewise continue to fight for these historic structures.”
About 429 East 64th Street and 430 East 65th Street
These two historic buildings contain a total of 190 rent-regulated units. Since the time of the hardship application, 126 affordable apartments have been kept vacant as part of an effort to redevelop the properties into a luxury high-rise. The remaining units are home to longtime tenants of modest income.
Stahl York Avenue submitted a “hardship application” to the LPC for the demolition of the buildings on the grounds that they do not generate a six percent profit, and that the units would not garner more than average rents of $600 per month. FRIENDS successfully refuted these claims, presenting evidence of rents at comparable properties that are considerably higher. With such evidence, the LPC rejected the “hardship application,” successfully protecting the century-old properties.
The Brokaw Mansion: Catalyst for the Landmarks Law
Following the completion of Central Park, upper Fifth Avenue became New York City’s most desirable address, where prominent families constructed opulent mansions. Within a generation they were quickly replaced with the latest trend — luxury apartment buildings. The Brokaw Mansion met this sad fate and was demolished in February 1965. But all was not lost! Public outcry and scathing press led Mayor Wagner to sign the landmarks legislation into law.
In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Landmarks Law, join FRIENDS for a program that will bring together vintage film clips and first-hand accounts to explore and celebrate this catalyzing moment in the history of preservation. Thanks to the generosity of the Ukrainian Institute of America, the program will take place at the former Fletcher-Sinclair Mansion, a spectacular contemporary of the Brokaw Mansion, located directly across the street from where it once stood.
Special guests include:
Peter Samton is a New York City architect and partner at Gruzen Samton. One of the original founders of AGBANY, the Action Group for Better Architecture in New York, Samton became involved with key preservation battles in the 1960s, including those to save Pennsylvania Station and the Brokaw Mansion.
John Heimann is an investment banker, former New York State Supervisor of Banking and Commissioner of Housing and Community Development, and was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to be Comptroller of the Currency. In the fall of 1964 Heimann was running for the New York State Assembly and helped to form the Committee to Save the Brokaw Mansion and get the Landmarks Law passed.
Joseph M. Cahalan, PhD, grew up in the Brokaw Mansion. His father was the live-in caretaker and superintendent for the building from roughly 1940 until its demolition in 1965. Dr. Cahalan is now the Chief Executive Officer of Concern Worldwide U.S., an organization dedicated to the reduction of suffering and elimination of extreme poverty.
Convened by Anthony C. Wood, author of Preserving New York: Winning the Right to Protect a City’s Landmarks, and Chair of the New York Preservation Archive Project, the program will be followed by a light reception.
Wednesday, February 18th 6:30 p.m.
THE UKRAINIAN INSTITUTE OF AMERICA 2 East 79th Street, at Fifth Avenue
RSVP required. Click HERE to make a free reservation.
Produced in partnership with the New York Preservation Archive Project and the Ukrainian Institute of America as part of the NYC Landmarks50 Alliance celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Landmarks Law.