LPC ‘Backlog Initiative’ Fails to Landmark 2 Federal-Style Houses on the LES

Posted on: February 24th, 2016 at 5:00 am by

This image has been archived or removed.

2 Oliver St. and 138 2nd Ave, Photo: Real Deal

Yesterday was a big day for the Landmarks Preservation Commission. A day of hearings watched closely by both preservationists and big real estate. It was all part of the so-called “Backlog Initiative,” the ambitious plan devised to address the buildup of 95 properties previously awaiting judgement by the city (85% were calendared more than twenty years ago).

Two federal-style Lower East Side buildings, in particular, did not net protective status – 2 Oliver Street and 138 Second Avenue.

The LPC first considered 2 Oliver Street back in 1966, according to public records. Right after the body was establishment, in fact. It was designed by Robert Dodge in 1821, and leased to architect James O’Donnell, who designed the nearby Fulton Street Market, among other achievements. The address was considered one of 13 Federal-style homes the GVSHP and New York Landmarks Conservancy recommended for landmark status in 2003.

This image has been archived or removed.

LPC Backlog Initiative schedule

138 Second Avenue is another of the Federal-style vintage. Located between St. Mark’s Place and East 9th Street, the building has been sitting pretty since 1832. It was first calendared by the LPC in 2009. The building’s heritage is a case-study in the neighborhood’s evolution, from premiere upper class living to German immigrant cultural center (“KIeindeutschland”).

The Backlog Initiative was originally proposed in 2014 with the goal of quietly de-calendaring all sites without hearings and input. They later changed tune after the collective protest of several preservation organizations like the GVSHP.


Here’s the full list of results for Manhattan…

Prioritized for Designation:
1.  315 Broadway Building, 315 Broadway, Manhattan, CD 1
2.  57 Sullivan Street House, 57 Sullivan Street, Manhattan, CD 2
3.  Interborough Rapid Transit Powerhouse, now Consolidated Edison Powerhouse, 850 12th Avenue (aka 840 Joe DiMaggio Highway), Manhattan, CD 4
4.  Bergdorf Goodman, 754 Fifth Avenue, Manhattan, CD 5
5.  Edgar J. Kaufman Conference Rooms, Lecture Hall and Elevator Lobby, 809 United Nations Plaza, Manhattan, CD6
6.  St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, Parish House & Rectory, 227 West 99th  Street,  Manhattan, CD 7
7.  412 East 85th Street House, 412 East 85th Street, Manhattan CD 8
8.  St. Joseph’s Church, 401-403 West 125th Street, Manhattan, CD 9
9. Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) Building, Harlem Branch (now Jackie Robinson YMCA Youth Center), 181 West 135th Street, Manhattan, CD 10
10. St. Paul’s Church and School, 121 East 117th Street, Manhattan, CD 11
11. Loew’s 175th Street Theater, 4140 Broadway, Manhattan, CD 12
12.  Excelsior Power Company Building, 33-43 Gold Street, Manhattan, CD 1

Removed from Calendar, No Action:
1.  143 Chambers Street Building, 143 Chambers Street, Manhattan, CD 1
2.  James McCreery & Co. (original store), 801-807 Broadway, Manhattan CD 2
3.  138 Second Avenue House, 138 Second Avenue, Manhattan, CD 3
4.  2 Oliver Street House, 2 Oliver Street,  Manhattan, CD 3
5.  Mission of the Immaculate Virgin West, 448 West 56th Street, Manhattan, CD 4
6.  Osborne Apartment Building Interior, 205 West 57th Street, Manhattan, CD 5
7.  Sire Building, 211 West 58th Street, Manhattan CD 5
8.  Union Square Park, Manhattan, CD 5
9. Empire Theater (Interior and Exterior), 236-242 West 42nd Street, Manhattan, CD 5
10. Liberty Theater (Interior and Exterior), 234 West 42nd Street, Manhattan, CD 5
11. Lyric Theater (Interior and Exterior), 213 West 42nd Street, Manhattan, CD 5
12. New Apollo Theater Interior, 215-223 West 42nd Street, Manhattan, CD 5
13. Selwyn Theater (Interior and Exterior), 229-231 West 42nd Street, Manhattan, CD 5
14. Times Square Theater (Interior and Exterior), 215-223 West 42nd Street, Manhattan, CD5
15. Victory Theater (Interior and Exterior), 207 West 42nd Street, Manhattan, CD 5
16. 150 East 38th Street House, 150 East 38th Street, Manhattan, CD 6
17. President Chester A. Arthur House, 123 Lexington Avenue, Manhattan, CD 6
18. D.G. Yuengling Brewery Co. Complex, Manhattan, CD 9
19. St. Paul’s Rectory, 113 East 117th Street, Manhattan, CD 11
20.  Hotel Renaissance, later Columbia Club, 4 West 43rd Street, Manhattan, CD 5]

Recent Stories

‘Leekan Designs’ to Shutter Next Month After 3 Decades of Selling the Unique

After three decades peddling unique antiques to SoHo, and most recently, the Lower East Side, Leekan Designs is hanging it up. According to an announcement from the store earlier this week, the store at 4 Rivington Street will fold on March 3. Since the early 1980s, the business has traded in antique and contemporary (oftentimes […]

Essex Crossing KO’s Delancey Street Subway Entrance

Beginning next week, straphangers will do without the southeast entrance to the Delancey Street subway station (at Essex). The temporary closure is due to subterranean construction for Essex Crossing. According to the community notice posted to the stairwell by Site 2 contractor T.G. Nickel, access is restricted for 95 days starting February 27. The three-month […]

‘Supreme’ Takes Over Germania Bank Building on the Bowery

Supreme is now slinging skate fashion on the Bowery. The popular urban brand is temporarily holed up at the Germania Bank Building while its Lafayette Street flagship is upgraded. The move transpired within the last couple weeks, but the store officially reopens on the Bowery today. Supreme announced the news on its Instagram feed yesterday […]

Chinatown Dessert Shop ‘Bonsai Kakigori’ Announces Hell Square Push

A Chinatown dessert shop is branching out, and will soon open a satellite in Hell Square. Bonsai Kakigori recently taped teaser signage to the windows of 100 Stanton Street, former home of the popular El Rey cafe. This Hell Square location is the first foray into brick-and-mortar for the company, which currently operates at the […]

Five Years Vacant, Preserve 24 Space Gets a 99-Cent Pizzeria

With a fully renovated property at the corner of East Houston and Allen Streets, landlord-developer Serge Hoyda already added two new food groups – gyros and pizza. The 99-cent pizza place, situated around the corner from Rosario’s and Una Pizza Napoletana, takes a bite out of floor area previously occupied by Preserve 24. The takeout […]