40 Accomplishments for 40 Years

A List of Selected Successes

40th Birthday Campaign

For the Past 40 Years, the Historic Districts Council has:

•1. Acted as an instrumental leader in securing landmark designation for 35 NYC historic districts.
•2. Testified on the designation of more than 40 other NYC historic districts.
•3. Reviewed, through the Public Review Committee, more than 3,000 applications for alterations to historic buildings that came before the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) for public hearings.
•4. Published “Creating an Historic District: A Guide to Neighborhoods,” a comprehensive, easy-to-understand guide to landmark preservation advocacy in New York.
•5. Raised awareness and achieved designation for more than 15 buildings on the “Heard But Not Designated” List, a group of individual properties not yet designated by the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
•6. Posted and distributed all testimony of HDC’s Public Review process through the HDC@LPCinitiative.
•7. Secured eligibility or listing on the National Register of Historic Places  for several significant neighborhoods including John Street/Maiden Lane, Addisleigh Park, and several areas of the South Bronx.
•8. Celebrated more than 80 grassroots preservation campaigns, advocates, elected officials, media publications and lifetime achievement honorees with Grassroots Preservation Awards.
•9. Organized the Annual Preservation Conference, now in its 17th year, to examine current preservation issues as well as also broader planning and development trends within New York City.
•10. Created the HDC Digital Image Library, an archive of more than 2,000 contemporary images of New York City-designated historic districts, for educational use.
•11. Partnered with colleague groups to hold an annual Preservation Lobby Day to advocate for additional funding for the Landmarks Preservation Commission and release a citywide preservation platform.
•12. Performed first and only zoning study of all historic districts in New York City, which examined the appropriateness of existing zoning regulations and made recommendations for zoning changes as necessary.
•13. Examined the boundaries of all existing historic districts through a citywide survey and proposed expansions where appropriate.
•14. Scheduled the Monday Morning Coffee Talk Series, a free program with representatives from municipal agencies and non-profit organizations addressing issues of importance to neighborhood preservation.
•15. Formed new neighborhood organizations in several key areas of the city, including DUMBO, NoHo andSunnyside Gardens to advocate for community preservation concerns.
•16. Distributed more than 5,000 copies of HDC advocacy and educational publications such as “Frequently Asked Questions About the Landmarks Process” and “Financial Incentives for Historic Buildings.”
•17. Honored more than 20 pivotal preservationists through the annual Landmarks Lion Awardevent.
•18. Sponsored and participated in hundreds of public programs and forums about the responsibilities and benefits of landmark designation.
•19. Participated in several high profile federal preservation Section 106 reviews including the World Trade Center, Brooklyn Navy Yard, and Queens Museum of Art.
•20. Strengthened the New York City Landmarks Law through passage of civil fines legislation and demolition by neglect legislation.
•21. Founded the Preservation Arts High Schoolprogram, along with several other collaborators.
•22. Created Community as Classroom, a practical manual that shows educators how to use architecture and the history of communities as resources in the classroom and trained hundreds of teachers in its use.
•23. Visited and performed on-site evaluations in more than 250 historic neighborhoods.
•24. Trained more than 50 interns who have gone onto professional careers in land use, planning and non-profit management.
•25. Oversaw more than 20 voter education forums, which allowed communities and their elected officials to work as partners to establish preservation as a priority topic.
•26. Initiated continuing education programsfor architects and other professionals on such significant topics as structural shoring, architectural conservation and working with the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
•27. Educated community board landmark and land use committees on understanding applications for changes to landmarked properties.
•28. Acted as a founding partner and citywide partner in residence for the Neighborhood Preservation Center,one of the only collaborations of its kind in the country.
•29. Co-sponsored mayoral candidate forums for more than four election cycles where candidates discussed their preservation platforms.
•30. Held more than 100
 walking tours of historic neighborhoods and sites.
•31. Joined more than a dozen lawsuits fighting to protect historic properties including the Poe House, Dvorak House, and the O’Toole Building.
•32. Lectured at many institutions of higher learning including Columbia University, Pratt Institute and New York University.
•33. Contributed to national periodicals as columnist for preservation, appearing in local and national media.
•34. Nominated several properties and areas to state and nationwide endangered lists including Seaview/Farm Colony on Staten Island, South Street Seaport and Two Columbus Circle.
•35. Received grants to survey significant neighborhoods like Addisleigh Park in Queens, John Street/Maiden Lane in Manhattan and DUMBO in Brooklyn.
•36. Led national awareness campaign to preserve areas of incredible significance like Tin Pan Alley.
•37. Campaigned for decades for state and federal preservation tax credits which benefit rehabilitation and restoration of historic properties, especially in low income areas.
•38. Researched important thematic historic resources including Carnegie Libraries and C. B. J. Snyder-designed public school buildings, to help raise awareness about their cultural and historical value.
•39. Launched the first citywide historic preservation listing program in New York City, Six to Celebrate, which identifies six significant neighborhoods as priorities of HDC for one year.
•40. Received overwhelming support from a network of more than 3,000 Friends of HDC, including YOU!