South Street Seaport plans look for LPC nod

April 18, 2012 12:30PM

The South Street Seaport in its current form is not long for this world, it seems, the New York Times reported. In a hearing yesterday with the Landmarks Preservation Commission, owner the Howard Hughes Corporation outlined its ambitious plans to “turn Pier 17 into a glass-clad shed dominated by two 60,000-square-foot sales floors on the upper level,” the Times said, which would mean that no large-scale retailers could be accommodated. And so far, the LPC seems receptive.

“We have in the past supported demolition when the trade-off is the new building is just as significant, if not more so,” Pablo Vengoechea, vice chairman of the LPC, said at the hearing.

Others retained their doubts, hinting that the troubled development, which has never made a profit, according to the Times, might have deeper flaws. “Do people shop on piers?” Frederick Bland, a commissioner with the LPC asked at the hearing.“Is putting a bunch of global generic shops on the pier the answer?” [NYT]