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GVSHP Releases “The Italians of the South Village”

South Village Columbus Day Celebration: Yesterday, GVSHP was joined by South Village community, business, and religious leaders, State Senator Tom Duane, representatives of Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Borough President Scott Stringer, and scores of local residents for a press conference and Columbus Day celebration that honored the Italian-American history and heritage of the South Village, highlighted the range of social, cultural, and architectural qualities that distinguish the historic South Village, and included continuing calls for the City to landmark the South Village (see photos and press release here).

GVSHP also announced the release of a 90-page report it commissioned by scholar Mary Elizabeth Brown of Marymount Manhattan College entitled “The Italians of the South Village,” chronicling the history of this defining community in the South Village. That report is available here, and was made possible by a grant from the J.M. Kaplan Fund. Included in the report is a map charting sites of historic interest in the Italian South Village, which can also be viewed here.

The event received considerable media coverage, including in AM New York (see here, or here), The Villager and The Real Deal.

The proposal for a South Village Historic District now has unanimous support from all city, state, congressional, and borough-wide elected officials who represent the area, as well as strong support from community leaders, neighborhood institutions and businesses, and local, state, and national preservation organizations. Several historic buildings in the neighborhood have been lost in recent years, and several more are currently endangered or in the process of being lost. However, historic district designation, which would save historic buildings from demolition, requires a hearing and approval by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, which has not yet acted upon this proposal.

How To Help:

Write to Mayor Bloomberg and Landmarks Preservation Commission Chair Tierney urging them to designate the proposed South Village Historic District — go to here.

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