Rally Held Against Planned Luxury Apartment Tower In Greenwich Village

Rich Lamb
January 17, 2020 - 3:22 pm
Greenwich Village protest

Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — City officials and historic preservation groups are fighting back against a developer's plan to demolish a building in Greenwich Village's hitoric district.

The buildings marked for demolition were built in 1848 and were once home to actress Celeste Holm, writer Bret Harte, Civil War Gen. Daniel Sickles and Isaac Singer, the founder of the Singer Sewing Machine Company.

Half of the apartments in the present buildings were rent regulated, but Madison Realty Capital is planning to take down the five-story, 20-unit apartment building to build a 244-foot tower with 18 super luxury apartments in its place.

Opponents of the plan to tear down 14 through 16 Fifth Avenue, between Eighth and Ninth streets, say to demolish the buildings would be to destroy history. 

"We are going to protect the Greenwich Village historic district. We are going to protect rent stabilized housing in the Village. We're going to defeat this plan," State Sen. Brad Hoylman declared.

“This outrageous plan is a slap in the face to our neighborhood, to our city’s history, and to tenants and affordable housing advocates," Andrew Berman, Executive Director of Village Preservation said. "To demolish a landmarked 170-year-old building which housed countless historic figures over the years and contained many units of needed affordable housing to make way for a high-rise pied-a-terre that will be grossly out-of-scale but actually contain less housing -- and none of it affordable – is appalling."

The buildings can only be demolished with the approval of the Landmarks Preservation Commission.