FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 27, 2018
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LPC Designates The Dime Savings Bank of Williamsburgh As An Individual Landmark
This early-20th century building is significant for its elegant design and history associated with Williamsburg’s growth and development as a financial center.
NEW YORK – Today, the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) designated the Dime Savings Bank of Williamsburgh at 209 Havemeyer Street in Brooklyn. This early-20th century building is significant for its elegant design and history associated with Williamsburg’s development as a financial center.
“I am delighted the Commission has designated the Dime Savings Bank of Williamburgh,” said Landmarks Preservation Commission Chair Meenakshi Srinivasan. “This fine building is a testament to the elegance and grandeur of the City Beautiful Movement.”
The Dime Savings Bank of Williamsburgh is a neo-Classical building originally constructed between 1906 and 1908 during a period of growth in Williamsburg that occurred after the completion of the Williamsburg Bridge in 1903. Commercial and financial institutions flourished to serve the growing working class and immigrant population. The Dime Savings Bank of Williamsburgh expanded rapidly and outgrew several locations before constructing this building as their headquarters in the heart of the new financial center of the Eastern District.
Designed by the prominent Brooklyn architecture firm of Helmle & Huberty, this building is a significant example of an early-20th century neighborhood savings bank that used a grand classical design to evoke a sense of security, prosperity and civic pride for a largely immigrant and low-income community. The monumental Indiana limestone building is set on a granite foundation and is defined by a temple-front with four fluted Corinthian columns that support a pediment with modillions, dentils, incised signage, and a clock. When the bank opened in 1908, The Brooklyn Daily Eagle boasted that the “completed structure readily commends itself as one of the most attractive financial institution buildings in the city.” The building has retained its classical design, with only some alterations to the entrance, as well as contemporary signage, and still stands today as a prominent part of the streetscape.
“I am very pleased the LPC chose to designate the Dime Savings Bank of Williamsburg as an individual landmark,” said Council Member Antonio Reynoso. “This historic structure has stood at the foot of the Williamsburg Bridge for over 100 years, welcoming folks to the neighborhood, and with this designation, we have ensured that it will remain in its original condition for 100 more. In a neighborhood that has experienced such drastic change in recent years, it is more important than ever that we protect our historical resources.
“This is a fitting tribute to the building’s architecture and its long history as a pillar of the historic financial center that was South Williamsburg,” said Sam Charney, principal of Charney Construction, the property owner. “The Dime Savings Bank of Williamsburgh has served as a local source of pride and community centerpiece for the past century, and is a true reflection of the socioeconomic diversity that has historically made this neighborhood and Brooklyn so special.”
About the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC)
The Landmarks Preservation Commission is the mayoral agency responsible for protecting and preserving New York City’s architecturally, historically and culturally significant buildings and sites. Since its creation in 1965, LPC has granted landmark status to more than 36,000 buildings and sites, including 1,408 individual landmarks, 120 interior landmarks, 10 scenic landmarks, and 141 historic districts and extensions in all five boroughs. For more information, visit www.nyc.gov/landmarks and connect with us via www.facebook.com/NYCLandmarks and www.twitter.com/nyclandmarks.