SL Green’s 1 Vanderbilt gets mixed reviews at Landmarks meeting

Some commissioners lauded design, others chided "hollow gesture" to Grand Central Terminal
July 22, 2014 04:15PM

Opinions on SL Green’s 1 Vanderbilt were mixed at a meeting on Tuesday of the Landmarks and Preservation Commission, which sought to weigh in on the design of the 65-story building’s base and its effect on Grand Central Terminal.

James von Klemperer represented building architect Kohn Pederson Fox at the meeting, pointing out new views of the Terminal afforded by a set back and the inclusion of terra cotta to complement Grand Central, Curbed reported.

The majority of the commission, including chair Meenakshi Srinivasan, came out in favor of the design. Commissioner Michael Devonshire called it “well thought-out,” according to the news site, and fellow commissioner Margery Perlmutter said the existence of current buildings that tower over the Terminal do not harm it. Community Board 5 also sent a letter to the commission in support of 1 Vanderbilt.

Despite describing the tower design itself as “wonderful,” Commissioner Frederick Bland said it distracted from the station, according to the news site. The Historic Districts Council said it failed to achieve harmony with the Terminal, calling the cut-away feature at the base “a hollow gesture to the grandeur of the Terminal.” [Curbed]Tom DiChristopher