Certificate of Appropriateness Testimony

HDC@LPC Testimony for August 8, 2023

Certificate of Appropriateness Testimony

1235 Dean Street – Crown Heights North Historic District

A Romanesque Revival style rowhouse designed by Albert E. White and built c. 1891. Application is to construct a rooftop addition.

Architect: NV/Design Architecture

HDC finds this proposal insufficiently detailed and does not support it at this time. The applicant has not provided enough information on the proposed materiality of this addition, especially given its substantial rear facade visibility. 

We therefore ask the commission to require this applicant to further develop this scheme before taking any action.

Action: Unanimously approved with the condition that the applicant work with staff on the color of the stucco, and the relationship of the roofline to the windows.

200 Hollywood Avenue – Douglaston Hill Historic District

A Mediterranean Revival style house built in 1927. Application is to legalize constructing garden walls, modifying a stair, installing infill and paving in non-compliance with Certificate of Appropriateness 21-02054 and excavation without a Landmarks Preservation Commission permit and to modify a parapet/railing and install infill and paving.


HDC is strongly opposed to this legalization. We are chagrined that the applicant went to the trouble of getting permits for proposed work, then disregarded those permits to pursue other work. The applicant’s current application does not make clear why they chose to pursue changes that were different than the ones permitted. We find the non-compliant work to be inappropriate and ask the commission to deny this legalization.

Action: Unanimously approved with modifications that the applicants work with staff to reduce hardscape

829 Greenwich Street – Greenwich Village Historic District

A modern building designed by Matthew Baird and constructed pursuant to Certificate of Appropriateness 03-7041 issued on May 15, 2003. Application is to alter the facades and construct new rooftop structures and other elements.

Architect: Baker Associates Architecture Office

HDC finds this proposal to be inappropriate. We believe that the front facade of this building is a carefully considered composition by a significant architect working to negotiate the language of two distinct historic districts, one residential and one industrial. Beyond that, the facade is extremely modest and differential to its neighbors.

HDC believes that there may be ways to alter this building and this facade that are more sympathetic to the original architect’s intent.

Action: No Action

661-665 Broadway, aka 228-232 Mercer Street – NoHo Historic District

A French Renaissance Revival style store building designed by Brunner and Tryon and built in 1891-92; and a neo-Gothic style store and loft building designed by V. Hugo Koehler and built in 1911-12. Application is to replace storefronts.

Architect: Carlton Architecture

HDC could support the design of this storefront replacement in theory, but we are unsure how the applicant chose their palate of materials, and whether those materials are historically appropriate or based on original conditions. We ask that the LPC work with the applicant to confirm the appropriateness of the materials being presented.

Action: Unanimously approved with the condition that the applicant work with staff to refine details.

38-42 Commerce Street – Greenwich Village Historic District

A brewery building built in 1836, and converted to a theater and apartments in 1924; and a house built in 1858. Application is to modify entrance infill, replace a window and sidewalk paving, and replace and install signage.

Architect: Leroy Street Studio

HDC applauds the thoughtfulness of this proposal, and suggests that the applicants also consider replacing the theater’s faux Dutch door. Perhaps a unit that matches the other replaced door would be an appropriate solution. 

Action: Unanimously approved

115 West 18th Street – Ladies’ Mile Historic District

A neo-Renaissance style department store building designed by Kimball & Thompson and built in 1896. Application is to legalize the installation of a door without Landmarks Preservation Commission permit(s).

Architect: Vocon

HDC does not support this proposal. Entrances are the most immediate way that the public interacts with historic architecture. Because this door is the main portal to the building, we feel the entrance deserves more thought. The applicant should research the original door configuration and materials and replace this unit with a correct and appropriate door, surround and transom.

Action: Unanimously Approved

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