Eagle: LPC Hearing on 30 Henry Design Results in Minor Changes

Linda Collins reports on the discussion at Monday’s Landmarks Preservation Commission hearing on the design of the building proposed to replace the old Eagle headquarters at 30 Henry Street, corner of Middagh, which is the first Brooklyn Heights building many people see after taking the exit from the Brooklyn Bridge (see a rendering of the proposed design here).

Brooklyn Daily Eagle: Following what one person described as “an exhilarating” discussion on the value of contextual vs. contemporary architecture in a historic district, the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) yesterday asked the design team of a proposed new five-story, five-unit building at 30 Henry St. in Brooklyn Heights to consider making some additional changes.

The story notes that Brooklyn Heights preservationist Otis Pratt Pearsall and Brooklyn Heights Association President Jane McGroarty and Executive Director Judy Stanton all urged the Commission to reject the proposed design and require something contemporary and distinctive. BHA member and architect Jonathan Marvel is quoted as saying, ““We implore you to inspire, to delight, to raise the bar on originality.” But Park Slope resident and preservationist Clem Labine said the site doesn’t need a “starchitect” building that would be “dissonant and disruptive.”

The Commission’s legal counsel said it didn’t have the power to require “a particular style.”

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  • Andrew Porter

    For all the tourists walking over the Brooklyn Bridge, their first impression of BH is all the 1960s buildings along Cadman Plaza West, not of Henry Street. I don’t know how many hundreds of these people I’ve enticed to walk past the bare concrete modernity they can see, to explore our wonderful neighborhood. Shouldn’t we be thinking beyond the first thing in BH that people in their cars (on their cellphones, texting, etc.) see?

  • ClintonStRez

    Absolute power corrupts absolutely. Having conceded that the design was appropriate, the LPC should have bowed out of the discussion. They have no right to act outside their limited authority — and impose their personal design aesthetics (and the related costs) on property owners. People may be less sympathetic when LPC holds up a developer. Wait until you try to replace your windows or fix your sidewalk!

  • stuart

    Brooklyn Heights has achieved the distinction of having the highest percentage of grumpy old curmudgeons per capita of any non-retirement community in the nation -this includes Mormon trailer parks in Utah and New Mexico.
    Congratulations to all! goddamn it to heck!!

  • Curmudgeon

    @Stuart – Dang burn you young whippersnapper. You really seem to know from experience what trailer parks are like and you figured us Heights folk out. Obviously you are a wise transplant to these parts. We stand in awe!

  • Andrew Porter

    I would really be indignant except I don’t have the strength to get up from my computer and wave my cane around, gosh nab it!