December 4, 2022
Sarah Carroll, Chair
NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission
1 Centre Street, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10007
Re: 242 Lafayette Street
Application for window replacement (LPC-23-02052)
SoHo-Cast Iron Historic District Extension
Dear Chair Carroll:
The Lower East Side Preservation Initiative – LESPI – opposes the referenced application to replace the existing windows in Number 2N with new paired one-over-one windows.
We believe that the proposed windows would have a detrimental effect on the building’s architectural and historic character. Although several of the windows are now paired one-over-ones, the building’s historic windows – single one-over-one or two-over-two windows – give the building’s fenestration a very distinctive character.
The applicant should follow the LPC Rules in this case, which we believe would call for single one-over-ones or single two-over-twos. We believe that circumventing the LPC Rules should only be done in extraordinary situations, and we don’t see that criterion as applying here. Although most of the facade’s existing windows are currently non-historic, the approval of historically appropriate windows here would set a pattern for future window replacements, bringing the building back closer to its historic appearance.