Four NYC Projects Win Statewide Preservation Honors
Preservation League of NYS will present award on May 10 in NYC
ALBANY, NY (05/03/2017) (readMedia)-- The Preservation League of New York State has selected four projects in New York City to receive its prestigious Excellence in Historic Preservation Award. The League's statewide awards program honors notable achievements in retaining, promoting and reusing New York State's irreplaceable architectural heritage.
"These projects illustrate the broad range of preservation efforts in New York State," said Jay DiLorenzo, president of the Preservation League. "From a maritime vessel introducing new artisans to long-lost trades, to a housing development named in honor of a noted labor organizer for the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, these award winners demonstrate that modern and green enhancements can be made while retaining character-defining properties. We commend all of the project teams for their vision and leadership."
- Beekman Hotel and Residences/Temple Court
This project used State and Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credits to breathe new life into a late 19th-century relic of a 'fireproof' New York office building. Ironically, compliance with fire codes contributed to the building's downfall in the 1950s when the full-height skylighted atrium was closed in. After extensive renovation of the interior and exterior, the Beekman Hotel and Residences now boasts 287 rooms – with 77 opening onto the atrium. The design team devised a means to keep the atrium open while meeting New York City's rigorous safety codes – with a minimum of intrusion on the meticulously restored historic fabric.
- A. Philip Randolph Houses, Phase One
These 22 old-law tenements, managed for some 50 years as public housing by the New York City Housing Authority, have been transformed into 168 generously-sized affordable apartments. Nearly a full city block's worth of exteriors have been restored – from brownstone to brick to limestone – and the apartments now boast modern and desirable amenities. The project included designation of the West 114th Street Historic District, which facilitated the use of State and Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credits, as well as low-income housing tax credits, and now stands as a bulwark against gentrification.
- South Street Seaport Museum: the 1885 sailing ship Wavertree
It's been many years since the League honored a maritime vessel – the John J. Harvey Fireboat in 2002. The return of the wrought-iron Tall Ship Wavertree to as-built sailing condition not only required strict attention to detail and best practices, but the assembly of a team of artisans skilled in long-lost trades. The public-private partnership among the City and other funders is commendable, and we hope the vessel will continue to be used for trades training. The restoration of the Wavertree helps to chart a new and exciting course for the Seaport and ensure its sustainability for years to come.
- Rouge Tomate Chelsea
The Awards Jury was particularly struck with the project's marriage of historic features with contemporary design. Despite their location in a Historic District, these Chelsea carriage houses had been inappropriately altered over the years. This project restored the handsome exteriors of the buildings, while incorporating green and sustainable design features on the interior. The League applauds the concerted efforts of the project team to return these structures to productive use, and for their goal of being good for the environment.
The awards will be presented at the Preservation League's Awards Ceremony in New York City at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 10th at the historic New York Yacht Club, 37 West 44th Street.
The complete list of award winners is: Phoenix Brewery Apartments, Buffalo; Beekman Hotel and Residences/Temple Court, New York City; A. Philip Randolph Houses, Phase One, New York City; South Street Seaport Museum: the 1885 sailing ship Wavertree, New York City; Rouge Tomate Chelsea, New York City; Marriott Syracuse Downtown (formerly Hotel Syracuse); Pickens Hall & Opera House, Heuvelton; Argos Inn, Ithaca. Ruth Pierpont, the former Deputy Commissioner for Historic Preservation and the Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer, will be honored for decades of service to the cause of historic preservation in New York State.
"With our annual awards program, the Preservation League explores not just the present, but the future of historic preservation. Many of the 2017 award winners provide valuable examples for others by incorporating energy efficiency techniques, adaptive reuse strategies and use of Federal and State Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits," said DiLorenzo. "Each year, we are impressed by the number and variety of laudable nominations, and this year was no exception. We are delighted to celebrate the rebirth of the Beekman Hotel and Residences/Temple Court; the A. Philip Randolph Houses, Phase One; the South Street Seaport Museum: the 1885 sailing ship Wavertree; and Rouge Tomate Chelsea by giving these very different yet admirable preservation efforts the statewide recognition they deserve."
The Preservation League of New York State invests in people and projects that champion the essential role of preservation in community revitalization, sustainable economic growth, and the protection of our historic buildings and landscapes. We lead advocacy, economic development, and education programs all across the state.