132 East 78th Street

Building Name

132 East 78th Street


James W. O'Connor

Year(s) Built



Upper East Side Historic District

Project Information:

A neo-Federal style building built in 1923-24 designed by James W. O'Connor. Application is to replace the existing rooftop fence with a new fence and solar panels.

CB8 Hearing: 07/18/12 (Approved)
LPC Hearing: 08/07/12 (No Action)

FRIENDS' Testimony:

Our Preservation Committee welcomes the use of solar panel technology on the historic buildings of the Upper East Side, and we believe that they can be integrated with great success. While the committee congratulates the educational and sustainability goals of Allen-Stevenson, the proposed structure does not appropriately engage with the historic building. Despite the design’s intended permeability, it reads as a full-scale addition that is highly-visible from Lexington Avenue.

The applicant has stated that the height of the structure can be diminished by 18 to 24 inches; this should be done at minimum. Furthermore, we insist that the applicant select both the panel and the fence systems before the Commission takes action on this proposal.

As this project will likely be considered a precedent for similar installations, we strongly urge the Commission to work with the applicant in crafting a new proposal that will serve as a model for future sustainable interventions on historic buildings.