News & Events Updates
From the Neighborhoods
Sunday, October 16, 2016
Audubon Monument, 550 West 155th Street
The distinctive footprint that disrupts Manhattan’s grid west of Broadway between 155th and 158th Streets—the Audubon Park Historic District—did not come about by accident or from the demands of local topography. It unfolded from careful planning and alliances among like-minded property owners, whose social and political connections ensured that when progress swept up Manhattan’s west side, they would benefit.
Join neighborhood historian Matthew Spady for a leisurely walk through the architectural treasures in the Audubon Park Historic District on Sunday, October 16 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The walk, sponsored by the Historic Districts Council, will begin at the Audubon Monument in Trinity Cemetery (155th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue) and from there wind through the historic district, ending at the historic row of twelve houses that John Leo and John Lilliendahl built on 158th Street between 1896 and 1898. The Historic Districts Council selected this row as one of its Six to Celebrate designations for 2016.
The cost of the walk is $10 for HDC friends, seniors or students, and $20 for non-members.
Participants may also pay at the start of the walk (cash only).
Saturday, September 24, 11:00AM: East New York
Following up on the success of our first tour of East New York in the spring, HDC is pleased to offer a repeat tour of this fascinating corner of Brooklyn! East New York has certainly been the talk of the town lately, as the City moves forward to rezone the neighborhood, along with 14 others. However, East New York is also known for its rich and somewhat troubled history. Join us for this tour, led by Farrah Lafontant, neighborhood resident and member of Preserving East New York, the newly formed civic group working to preserve the neighborhood’s built heritage. The tour will begin at the 75th Police Precinct Station and include visits to a Magistrates Court, the former site of the East New York Savings Bank, Maxwell’s Bakery and the Borden Dairy Company factory complex, which was recently heard by the Landmarks Preservation Commission for potential landmark status.
After the tour we will head to Arts East New York for a reception. The party will allow neighbors to learn more about PENY and the work they are doing in East New York. The party is free and open to the public, you do not have to attend the tour to attend the party.
Sunday, October 30, 11:30AM: Clay Avenue & Grand Concourse
Join us for a tour highlighting two very different historic districts in The Bronx! We will begin with a stroll through the charming Clay Avenue Historic District, a one-block stretch of remarkably intact and refreshingly unchanged rowhouses. Following this treasure of a block, the tour will loop back to the Grand Concourse Historic District to take in a smattering of Revival and Art Deco apartment buildings. This juxtaposition of small-scale, late 19th century rowhouses and large-scale, early 20th century apartment buildings will allow participants to compare and contrast trends in the development of middle-class housing a generation or so apart. The tour will end at another locally designated gem, the Andrew Freedman Home, located on the Grand Concourse at East 166th Street. The home has a colorful and unlikely origin story, having been built by millionaire philanthropist Andrew Freedman as a retirement facility for wealthy people who had lost their fortunes.
Sunday, October 30, 2:00PM: East River Vistas: Architecture and Changing Lifestyles in Yorkville
Once home to bucolic farmland, the eastern edge of Yorkville was dotted with clapboard farmhouses and country houses before being transformed into an industrial factory hub at the turn of the 20th century. As immigrants settled in Yorkville, tenement buildings were constructed, and by the 1930s the area around East End Avenue was home to luxury apartments designed by elite architects. Join the Historic Districts Council and FRIENDS of the Upper East Side Historic Districts as we track this fascinating history of housing in eastern Yorkville with architectural historian and famed tour guide, Francis Morrone. Highlights will include East End Avenue, Gracie Square and Carl Schurz Park, model tenements such as the Cherokee Apartments, the idyllic rowhouses at Henderson Place and everything in between, including the largest white brick high-rise in the universe!
Support is provided in part by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and by the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Additional support is provided by City Council Members Ben Kallos, Rosie Mendez, Mark Levine, Inez Dickens, Vincent Gentile, Corey Johnson, Stephen Levin, Margaret Chin, Dan Garodnick, and Rafael Salamanca and New York State Assembly Members Deborah Glick, Richard Gottfried, and Daniel O’Donnell.
Originally a Native American footpath and Dutch farm road, the Bowery stretches 1.25 miles from Chatham Square to Cooper Square. Washington marched down the Bowery after the British evacuation and Lincoln’s anti-slavery speech at Cooper Union propelled him to the presidency. It saw America’s first streetcars, first free college, and NYC’s first free Black settlement. An early social hub for the working class, gangs, gays and immigrant Irish, Italians, Chinese, Jews and Germans, it has important links to baseball, tap dance, tattoo, Yiddish theater, vaudeville, the Astor family, Stephen Foster, Irving Berlin and Harry Houdini.
A long-time home to rescue missions and affordable jewelry, lighting and restaurant supply districts, its artists’ community helped foster Abstract Expressionism, Beat Literature, and punk rock. Though listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this architecturally diverse streetscape is one of the city’s most endangered historic treasures.