Built in 1923/24 and designed by Cross & Cross and Phelps Barnum, the building is unique as one of the only remaining Pre-World War II office buildings on Park Avenue. The Postum was part of “Terminal City,” also known as the Grand Central Zone, an early 20th century commercial and office development in Midtown Manhattan, developed atop the former Grand Central Station railyard. (NEW YORK 1900, Stern, Gilmartin, Massengale). Along with New York Central Building and the Roosevelt Hotel, the Postum is a significant physical remnant of the City Beautiful design and planning ideals demonstrated in Grand Central Terminal.
The building fills the whole block-front on Park Avenue down to Vanderbilt Avenue, part of Terminal City, from 46th to 47th streets.
Cross and Cross is responsible for many important buildings in New York, such as the General Electric Building and 20 Exchange Place.
The Postum “was considered one of the finest examples of urban design for its era, and, like many buildings of that time, it has a richly embellished façade.” The New York Times, Shawn G. Kennedy, March 31, 1985. In the mid-1980’s, the building’s façade — including cartouches, sculpted panels, and a row of lion heads – were cleaned; the original vaulted ceiling was revealed and restored.
photo credit: Nathaniel Lindsey
“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
“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
“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
“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
"HDC has begun a series of projects to highlight the Bronx's architectural and cultural history. From booklet's and research highlighting specific sites and historic districts to the HDC's symposium in October 2018 to the latest community-based committee to look into further possible sites to qualify for landmarking, the HDC has established projects that will serve the Bronx community well."
City Lore, Folklorist
Bronx Music Heritage Center, Co-Artistic Director
"Welcome2TheBronx is grateful for the advocacy done by the Historic Districts Council on behalf of the people of The Bronx. Through their deep connections and understanding of the importance of preserving our local histories, The Bronx has been able to have several spotlights shown on endangered communities as gentrification creeps into the borough."
Ed García Conde,
founder and Executive Director,