1006 Madison Avenue
G. E. Knowlde
Altered with a two-story commercial extension in the early 20th century
Replace storefront infill
Upper East Side Historic District
A French Second Empire style residence designed by G. E. Knowlde and built in 1870, altered with a two-story commercial extension in the early 20th century. Application is to replace storefront infill.
CB8 Hearing: 12/15/2014
LPC Hearing: 01/06/2015 (No Action); 02/10/15 (Approved)
Madison Avenue in the Upper East Side Historic District is one of the world’s most distinctive shopping streets. Its characteristic sense of place – its scale, rhythm, pace, and detailing – is defined by the many 19th-century rowhouses that line the avenue, and by their two-story commercial extensions constructed in the early 20th-century. It is for this reason that the Madison Avenue Guidelines were created – a process in which FRIENDS was happy to take part.
And so FRIENDS finds this proposal to be deeply troubling. As the Commissioners are well aware, the Guidelines designate Sub-Category I (Red) as historic storefronts. “This category requires the retention and restoration of historic storefronts.” The full two-story storefront at 1006 Madison Avenue is labeled red. The existing Moderne retail front on the ground level is historic, and moreover, charming. It must be retained in its entirety as it contributes to the character of Madison Avenue in a way that the proposed very generic storefront would not.
If, as the applicant claims, it is impossible to rent the space in its current configuration, the owner should pursue relief under the hardship provision of the Landmarks Law.
The Preservation Committee at FRIENDS emphatically requests that the Commission deny this application.