May 14, 2012
Honorable Robert Tierney, Chairman
New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission
1 Centre Street, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10007
Re: Landmark Designation for The Bowery Bank of New York, 124 Bowery, Manhattan
Dear Chairman Tierney:
The Lower East Side Preservation Initiative – LESPI – is writing to support LPC’s designation of the former The Bowery Bank of New York, at 124 Bowery aka 230 Grand Street as an Individual Landmark. This Beaux Arts style building has a strong visual presence on the Bowery and has an aesthetically important relationship with the Bowery Savings Bank building, one of New York’s most cherished landmarks which flanks this building on either side.
The Bowery Bank building, constructed in 1901 by prominent architects York and Sawyer, is in the heart of the Lower East Side’s immigrant community. In New York, Beaux Arts architecture is perhaps stylistically unsurpassed in its outward expression of civic pride, virtue, stability and aspiration. 124 Bowery’s architecture tells an important story about the hopes and desires of the community it served: its monumental architecture proudly and emphatically proclaims its presence on the streetscape, and beautiful façade with classical ornamentation speaks of its long term contribution toward and commitment to the surrounding community. Today these values continue to ring true.
The building is a highly valued and irreplaceable architectural and cultural resource for both the Lower East Side and New York City as a whole. Its loss would diminish the architectural and cultural wealth of our community and city, as well as the Bowery Savings Bank’s architecture and aesthetics of the surrounding streetscapes. Only landmark status will ensure the preservation of this important structure.
We request that the LPC vote to designate 124 Bowery as an Individual Landmark as soon as possible. Thank you.
Richard D. Moses