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Home : Advocacy : South Village : Latest News : 5/17/19

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Pushing Back on “Blowing Out”
Historic Rowhouses — Cushman Row
and 85 Sullivan Street


Village Preservation has been pushing back on an alarming trend of gigantic additions being proposed for modestly-sized landmarked historic rowhouses purchased by new owners.  Sometimes these new additions are as big as or bigger than the original house and may involve destroying almost all of the original house except the facade. 


218 West 20th Street – building in section, existing (left) and proposed (right)


One recent example involves a proposed addition to a house on the iconic Cushman Row in the heart of the Chelsea Historic District. Though outside of our area, Village Preservation joined local and citywide groups in opposing the planned oversized addition to this beautifully intact ensemble of Greek Revival houses because it would have destroyed an important piece of New York architectural history. We are pleased to report that this week the Landmarks Preservation Commission rejected the proposed addition


85 Sullivan Street proposed addition rendering and building in section


A similar proposal is now under consideration for 85 Sullivan Street, an individually landmarked 1819 house with a twin at 83 Sullivan Street, which is located within the Sullivan Thompson Historic District, which Village Preservation got landmarked in 2016
The proposal would add an enormous, highly visible, oversized addition to the modest federal style house — bigger than the actual house itself. Because of a small empty lot next door, the proposed addition would be highly visible, destroying the symmetry between 85 and its landmarked neighbor at 83 Sullivan Street, and overwhelming the historic house. View the full application here and get more information here
Proposals like these undermine the entire purpose of landmark designation.  We are pleased to report that last night Community Board 2 rejected the proposal, but it will be heard by the Landmarks Preservation Commission on June 4th, which will ultimately decide its fate. 


Urge the Landmarks Preservation Commission to Reject the Proposed Oversized Addition to 85 Sullivan Street - CLICK HERE

Next: 6/14/19

Previous: 12/13/16

Home : Advocacy : South Village : Latest News : 5/17/19

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