Certificate of Appropriateness Testimony

HDC@LPC Testimony for January 23, 2024


67 Cranberry Street – Brooklyn Heights Historic District


A Greek Revival style rowhouse built in 1840. Application is to enlarge a rear yard addition.

Architect: Rise

HDC finds this application inappropriate.  

The project renders the existing rear addition one story too high. The top two floors of the existing rear facade should be maintained.

Action: Unanimously approved

280 Washington Avenue – Clinton Hill Historic DistrictCERTIFICATE OF APPROPRIATENESS
A Queen Anne style house designed by Marshall J. Morrill and built in 1887. Application is to construct a garage building and a rear yard addition, and to legalize the removal of iron work without Landmarks Preservation Commission permit(s).

Architect: Murdock Solon

We commend this lovely proposal. It is appropriate and well executed.

Action: Unanimously approved

64 Downing Street – Clinton Hill Historic District

An Italianate style rowhouse designed by Babcock & Sturges and built c. 1868-70.
Application is to construct a rear yard addition.

Architect: Metro Design

HDC finds this rear yard addition to be inappropriate.  

HDC believes that rear yard extensions to rowhouses should leave the top two floors of any given rowhouse largely intact – unless there is precedent in the immediate vicinity for more bulk. There is no such precedent at this location, which makes this proposed addition one story too high.

Additionally, we feel strongly that renovations of this scale should require the restoration of the building’s cornice to the street facing facade, which would both protect the facade and enhance the urban fabric. 

Action: Unanimously approved with modification that the addition be brought down to two stories.

196 Wyckoff Street – Boerum Hill Historic District Extension

An Italianate style rowhouse with alterations, built in 1870. Application is to modify window openings and install railings on the garage.

Architect: Tyler Survant Architect

HDC finds the proposed change in masonry openings appropriate, however the muntin configuration should be further considered according to historic precedent, and the historic muntin configuration should be applied to windows across all three facades.

Action: Unanimously approved with recommendation to explore the design of the railing.

105 Chambers Street, aka 89-91 Reade Street and 160-170 Church St – Cary Building Individual Landmark – Tribeca South Historic District

An Italianate style store and loft building designed by King and Kellum and built in 1856-57. Application is to replace cast iron elements with a substitute material.

Architect: Lingineering Consulting

HDC often supports cast iron replacement with alternate materials, but in this case, the building was designated specifically for its materials.

The designation report notes: “The Cary Building, built in 1856-57, is one of New York’s most important 19th-century commercial structures. Designed by one of New York’s most prominent firms specializing in commercial architecture, with cast-iron fronts fabricated by the city’s most important foundry, it is a significant early product of the period during the middle of the century when New York’s premier position in the commercial life of the nation was established.”

Given the importance of cast iron to the building’s history and to its designation, we believe materials should guide the conversation, and cast iron is  the most appropriate solution.

Action: Unanimously approved with modification that the applicant undertake a full inspection, and if the scope of work is beyond what is presented here, the applicant will come back to the commission.

307-309 6th Avenue – Greenwich Village Historic District Extension II

A commercial and residential building built c. 1832 and altered in 1948, and a stripped neo-Tudor style commercial building built c. 1828 and altered in 1926 and 1963. Application is to demolish the buildings and construct a new building.

Architect: Isaac and Stern Architects

HDC supports demolition of the existing buildings on these lots. 

We appreciate that there will be a new building here, and note that some care was taken on the primary facade, including some elements of differentiation and detail, such as Roman brick, but we find that this design is not specific. It could be any new building in any area of the city, or some other city.  This site presents an opportunity to contribute to the district. We believe the architect should further study the front, rear and side facades to be somewhat more consistent, connected and interesting.

Action: No action

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