The Historic Districts Council is pleased to present a series of classes that will provide you with general knowledge and vocabulary about historic preservation practice in New York City. This series is ideally suited to civic organizations, community board members, grassroots preservationists and anyone interested in how to preserve neighborhood character.
Check the HDC calendar to see if there are any Preservation School classes currently scheduled.
Previous Winter 2022 Classes:
Windows on the Bowery: 400 Years on NYC’s Oldest Street
January 19, 2022
5:00 p.m. -6:00 p.m.
This illustrated talk with Bowery Alliance of Neighbors’ David Mulkins, will look at the street’s history and efforts to preserve and protect it, including designation to the National Register of Historic Places, and the acclaimed historic signage project that inspired the book. Despite being the city’s oldest thoroughfare, and what one historian referred to as “an incubator of American popular culture,” the Bowery is the city’s most endangered historic streetscape.
Challenges in Cellar and Basement Use in NYC
January 25, 2022
6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
With the recent flooding of cellar and basement apartments in NYC as a result of hurricane Ida, particularly in Queens, providing apartments in these spaces has become even more debated. Located in a storefront office in Sunnyside, Laura Heim Architect has worked on numerous residential properties in Queens dealing with the issue of legal cellar/basement use. Her own office cellar has been impacted. While in concept, making existing illegal basement and cellar apartments up to code and safe could aid in alleviating the housing shortage, the reality is that there are numerous hurdles to accomplishing this goal while providing safe and healthy spaces. This class, led by Laura Heim, FAIA LEED AP, will address the basic zoning and code restrictions which make the legalization of existing cellars and basements in many cases difficult and costly, if not impossible. The high standards set by the building and zoning codes have evolved over time to protect the health and safety of New Yorkers. Join us as we delve into this complex issue facing NYC in detail.
Urban Planning NYC
January 26, 2022
5:00 p.m. -6:00 p.m.
In this class, Urban Planner Jeff Reuben will provide an overview and help demystify major components of urban planning in New York City. He will present practical information about zoning, the land use approvals process, and environmental review, describing the role of public entities including the City Planning Commission, Department of City Planning, Board of Standards and Appeals, and the City Council. He will also explain how planning relates to historic preservation efforts and the Landmarks Preservation Commission.