The Landmarks Preservation Commission has been quite busy. Not only has the commission added new interiors to the ever-growing list of those that are designated as landmarks in the city, but it has also continued to stall a condo development project as the architect works toward creating a plan that properly fits within the Greenwich Village Historic District.
West Village Condo Development Continues to be Stalled by the Landmarks Preservation Commission
In yet another attempt to move forward with plans for a West Village condo development, architect David Chipperfield’s plans were once again rejected by the Landmarks Preservation Commission. Located at 11-19 Jane Street, the project has had difficulty getting off the ground since the beginning. In fact, Chipperfield has appeared before the commission numerous times with plans for the apartment building located within the Greenwich Village Historic District, but the commission continues to ask the British architect to revise his plans.
The last time Chipperfield appeared before the commission was in July, since which time his firm has put a significant amount of work toward revising the building. In response to the commission and community feedback, the revised plans changed the façade material of the six-story building from a light precast concreate to a Roman brick of a similar color. The change helps to make the plans look less like a miniature version of one of Chipperfield’s Midtown condos to one that is more befitting of the sleepy West Village.
The revised plans have also changed up the windows and window patterns, with the original plans calling for stainless steel-rimmed windows and balustrades meant to give the building an edgier look. The revised plans call for sunken windows and sliders, which still did not go over well with the commission. Finally, the new plans changed the original plan from a 95-foot tall structure to an 85-foot structure. All these changes still were not good enough, however, as the commission sent Chipperfield back to the drawing board to create a new proposal once more.
Ambassador Grill Interiors Recognized as a NYC Landmark
As Chipperfield tries to work within the guidelines of the Landmarks Preservation Commission, the commission has moved forward with unanimously voting to preserve the disco-era rooms of the postmodern Ambassador Grill within the UN Plaza Hotel. Designed by Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo & Associates, the spaces will become the 118th interior landmark in New York City.
Advocates have been pushing for the interior to receive landmark designation since last January when the hotel’s owners showed interest in changing the interior. In response to the advocates’ concerns, the Landmarks Preservation Commission agreed to calendar a vote with a full hearing. In addition to being the newest interior landmarks in terms of when they were designated, the interiors are also the newest in terms of when they were built. The Ambassador Grill interior was completed in 1975 while the hotel’s lobby interior was completed in 1983. Stunning examples of postmodern architecture, the disco-era rooms feature checked marble, glittering mirrors and other finishes reflecting the era. As such, they are among only a few remaining intact examples of the 1970s style left in the city.