250 Water St. LPC CofA Application: New Tower on Site

May 3, 2021

Sarah Carroll, Chair
NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission
1 Centre Street, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10007

Re: 250 Water Street, South Street Seaport Historic District (LPC-21-03235)

Dear Chair Carroll:

The Lower East Side Preservation Initiative – LESPI – has reviewed the latest modifications to the proposal for the new building at 250 Water Street, and remains strongly in opposition, for the same reasons we outlined in previous testimony.

The building is still grossly out-of-scale with the rest of the historic district, and detracts from rather than reinforces the district’s historic character. Aesthetically, the building reads more as an ersatz stage set than as architecture, which can be clearly seen in the rendering of the view from the Brooklyn Bridge.

Approval of this proposal would set a terrible precedent, for allowing out-of-scale buildings in historic districts. Justifying approval based on promised contributions to a not-for-profit organization, now matter how tempting to some, would also set a very bad precedent.

We’ve attached our previous letter, dated April 5, 2021, which further details our arguments in opposition. We continue to respectfully urge the Commissioners to deny this proposal. 


Richard Moses

Cc: Laura Sewell, Lower East Side Preservation Initiative