Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 11, 2019
CONTACT: lpcpressoffice@lpc.nyc.gov, 212-669-7938

LPC Designates 7 Broadway Buildings South of Union Square as Individual Landmarks

Together, these very intact and architecturally significant buildings represent an important era in the commercial development and history of this area.

7 Buildings

NEW YORK – Today, the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) designated 7 historic buildings on Broadway south of Union Square as individual landmarks: 817 Broadway, 826 Broadway, 830 Broadway, 832-834 Broadway, 836 Broadway, 840 Broadway, and 841 Broadway. These historic buildings located between East 12th and East 14th streets represent an important era in Broadway's history and recognize the significant contributions that these late-19th century commercial structures made to the area's architectural and historic character.

"I am delighted that the Commission has voted to designate these seven Broadway buildings as individual landmarks," said Landmarks Preservation Commission Chair Sarah Carroll. "Each of these seven buildings has strong architectural and historical significance and together they reflect the history and importance of Broadway's development south of Union Square. They tell the history of the area, from its industrial past with the garment industry and labor rights movement to its cultural significance with the film industry and the internationally beloved Strand Bookstore."

Built between 1876 and 1902, these seven buildings were designed by notable New York City architects as the area south of Union Square was experiencing rapid commercial development. They include prominent corner buildings that anchor this section of Broadway between NoHo and Union Square, and an intact and handsome block-front that reflects the late-19th century development of the avenue and broader area. They are architecturally significant examples of their style and type.

They are also culturally significant for their associations with the garment industry, book publishing and selling, and filmmaking. The garment industry, houses in many of these buildings was a major employer of New York City's working class and immigrant women, and became an important sphere through which their advocacy on issues such as labor rights and suffrage emerged.

  • 817 Broadway is an architecturally significant 14-story Renaissance Revival-style store-and-loft building designed by the prominent American architect George B. Post in 1895-98 that represents the commercial development that transformed Broadway south of Union Square. For much of the early 20th century, tenants were clothing and textile manufacturers, including the Meyer Jonasson Building, one of the largest manufacturers of ladies garments. Today, this well-preserved building is being converted to office and retail space.
  • 826 Broadway, now the Strand Building, is an architecturally significant 11-story store Renaissance Revival-style and loft building designed by William H. Birkmire in 1902. Its steel skeleton-frame construction exemplifies the stylistic character and technological advances in skyscraper architecture at the time it was built. It is culturally significant as the home of the internationally-known Strand Bookstore for more than 60 years and historic association with the garment industry in the early 20th century. The Strand moved to the building from Fourth Avenue's book row in 1956 becoming a center of literary life in Lower Manhattan, and continues today at this active corner. The building contained several garment businesses, including a variety of women's shirtwaist, cloak, and dress factories; men's suit-makers and children's clothing manufacturers.
  • 830 Broadway is an architecturally significant 11-story Renaissance Revival- style store-and-loft building designed in 1897 by Cleverdon & Putzel in 1898 that represents the commercial development that transformed Broadway south of Union Square. The building housed a variety of small manufacturing and wholesale businesses, largely associated with the garment industry, through the mid-20th century. It was converted to a residential building in the 1980s.
  • 832 Broadway is an architecturally significant 10-story Renaissance Revival style store and loft building designed in 1896 by Ralph S. Townsend that represents the commercial development that transformed Broadway south of Union Square. In the early 20th century, it contained a variety of garment manufacturing and wholesale businesses, and in the second half of the 20th century was home to several publishing companies, including the Worker's Library Publishing House, later referred to as the New Century Publishers. It was converted to a residential building with a commercial ground floor in the 1980s.
  • 836 Broadway is an architecturally significant six-story store and loft building designed by Stephen Decatur Hatch in 1876. The building is notable for its stately cast-iron facades with delicate neo-Grec details and Renaissance-inspired mansard roof. By the early 1900s, it was occupied by garment factories, some of which were picketed during the historic New York City shirtwaist strike of 1909-1910. It continues to function as a commercial building today.
  • 840 Broadway is an architecturally significant 12-story Renaissance Revival style store-and-loft building designed by the noted architect Robert Maynicke that represents the commercial development that transformed Broadway south of Union Square. The building housed small clothing manufacturing and wholesale businesses, through the mid-20th century, including the Thompson Company, Lester & Company, and Goodyear Waterproof Company, manufacturers of raincoats and related apparel. The building was converted to a mixed-use cooperative in the 1970s.
  • 841 Broadway, known the Roosevelt Building, is an architecturally significant eight-story Romanesque Revival/Renaissance Revival-style store and loft building designed by Stephen D. Hatch 1894 for James A. Roosevelt and Robert Barnwell Roosevelt. It is also historically significant for housing garment manufacturers, such as Hackett, Carhart & Company and the Biograph Company, one of the first American film studios that advanced filmmaking technology and launched the careers of notable early filmmakers and silent-screen stars.

"Designating structures as individual landmarks ensures that even with an historic district, architecturally, historically, or culturally significant buildings will have greater chances at preservation into the future," said Assembly Member Deborah Glick. "As our City continues to change, and new industries remake the tenor and feel of neighborhoods, preserving our historic past ensures that change is welcome while keeping with a community's values. Although I hope that more buildings or even a landmark district are designated south of Union Square in the future, this is a great achievement for our community."

"I want to thank LPC for their landmark designation of these seven buildings along Broadway, which comes following years of effort from community members seeking recognition of this corridor's historical character," said Council Member Carlina Rivera. "These buildings represent the pinnacle of Industrial Age architecture south of Union Square, and together they will further preserve and acknowledge lower Broadway's legacy as a center of New York City's manufacturing might. I look forward to collaborating with the Commission and local stakeholders on additional opportunities to recognize the architectural and cultural treasures in our neighborhoods."

"One of the compelling forces for the acquisition and repositioning of 817 Broadway was the inherent beauty of the exterior architecture," said Matthew Weir, Senior Vice President of Taconic Investment Partners, owner of 817 Broadway. "While in need of significant investment to return it to its original splendor, we have now completed the restoration which included a full cleaning and all new windows.  In addition, the limestone piers that had previously been removed were replicated and reintroduced to the building base.  The City's designation as a Landmark is a testament to the historical character of the building which through a fully modern renovation is now preserved for future generations to enjoy."  

"The Victorian Society of New York wholeheartedly supports the designation of these seven Broadway buildings, especially 826 Broadway, which contributes to the distinct sense of place created by this suite of buildings," said George Calderaro, Board Member of the New York Metropolitan Chapter of the Victorian Society in America. "These structures are a dazzling array of loft, store and office buildings with intact elaborate detailing that fully merit landmark protection. Their designation will ensure that work on the buildings is supervised by leading preservationists at no expense to the owner, who will also be eligible to receive historic property tax credits."

"The Historic Districts Council is thrilled about the designation of these seven buildings," said Dan Allen, President of the Historic Districts Council. "They're wonderful representations of the architecture and history of this area. We hope to see other buildings in the neighborhood recognized in the future."

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 1,415 individual landmarks, 120 interior landmarks, 11 scenic landmarks, and 144 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.