Landmark designation angers building owner

June 18, 2010 09:00AM

135 Bowery

The city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission wants to designate
135 Bowery as a landmark, against the wishes of building owner Ricky
Wong, the New York Observer reported. Five months after the Department of
Buildings approved his proposal for renovation, Wong received a letter
on June 7 from the commission telling him that they wanted to
designate his three-story building — a specimen of the early
19th-century Federal style — as a city landmark. That designation
would likely prevent Wong from adding four stories, a project he’d
been planning since he bought the building in 2003. The DOB approved
the project in August 2008 and again in January of this year. Wong has
since hired an architect and gutted the structure. Located on the edge
of Chinatown and the Little Italy Historic District, Wong’s home is in
an area in which the LPC has already designated 18 Federal-style
buildings as landmarks. Five other buildings, including 135 Bowery,
have had construction halted and hearings scheduled until the LPC
rules on their landmark status. [NYO]