Roosevelt Hospital, William J. Syms Operating Theater

STATUS Designated Individual Landmark

400 West 59th Street

ARCHITECT: W. Wheeler Smith  

DATE: 1890-92

STYLE: Hospital

Hospital Manhattan Upper West Side

The William J. Syms Operating Theater, built 1890-1892, was the most advanced operating theater in the world when it opened and one of the first equipped for aseptic surgery. The result of a collaboration of the architect William Wheeler Smith and the prominent American surgeon Charles McBurney, the building represented the attempt in the 19th century to reconcile architecture with technological advances.

The appearance of the building, subtle and simple in detail but striking in its massing, especially in the form of its semi-conical roof, is expressive of the unusual functional demands of the building, an effort to harmonize the design with the other Roosevelt Hospital buildings, and the well-developed personal style of the architect for medical buildings.

STATUS Designated Individual Landmark

Take Action

Add the next LPC meeting to your calendar.

Let your local representative know you care.
nyc.gov

Share your photos of this neighborhood

Help preserve New York’s architectural history with a contribution to HDC

$10 $25 $50
Other >
The Neighborhood

Upper West Side

The Upper West Side is located along the western side of Central Park from 59th Street to 110th Street. The Upper West Side has several Historic Districts and Individual Landmarks.

Aaron Dexter, Academic Classic, Adamesque, Addisleigh Park, Admiral's Row, African American, Al Smith, Alhambraic, American Aesthetic, American Art Deco, American ... VIEW ALL

Explore the Neighborhood >

Local Voices

“I don’t know what the City would be without HDC. [They] testified before LPC time after time and helped us focus on the right issues. We would not be an historic district without HDC! ”

Doreen Gallo: DUMBO Neighborhood Alliance

Local Voices

“Use HDC as a resource because they know what they are doing and can offer advice on how to go about creating a district from every front: architectural, political, LPC, and the media. I had floundered prior to my involvement with this invaluable organization.”

Fern Luskin: Lamartine Place Historic District; Friends of Lamartine Place & Gibbons Underground Railroad Site

Local Voices

“HDC provided guidance and shared information during that process—we knew which Council members were going one way or another and we changed a few minds. I don’t think NoHo would have had as cohesive a district had it not been for HDC’s aid.”

Zella Jones: NoHo Historic District; NoHo East; and NoHo Extension

Local Voices

“I remember Richard saying at a meeting, we have someone here from HDC, Nadezhda Williams, Director of Preservation and Research, to help us. She said to us, ‘You are not the only ones going through this.’ HDC included us in an enormous community”

Erika Petersen: West End Preservation Society