The Real Deal New York

49 beautiful old New York buildings that no longer exist

A look at dozens of grand structures razed before the 1966 National Historic Preservation Act
By Business Insider | September 16, 2014 08:00AM

New York City is constantly being rebuilt.

In the 19th and 20th centuries, dozens of beautiful old buildings were demolished to make way for new development. It wasn’t until 1966, with the passage of the National Historic Preservation Act, that historic buildings could be protected by federal law.

Click through to see some of these vanished buildings, which include iconic hotels, businesses, and private homes.

Max Rosenberg contributed to this post.

Click here to see the buildings that no longer exist »

  • marknroses

    Preservation and Growth are a delicate balance in a city like ours. Some of these properties serving a public purpose (Penn Station) definitely warranted preservation as well as Times Square Theaters while the Hippodrome was obsolete in its Sixth Avenue area and deserved to be demo’d for the growing office market anchoring the city’s economic base.

  • Lovely history!

  • Sam Smith


  • Dempster Brown

    You obviously didn’t do any actual research before writing this, as you’ve got obvious factual errors in it. If you had done 5 minutes of research, you would know that the National Historic Preservation Act does nothing to protect historic buildings if a private party owns the building. The National Historic Preservation Act created the federal register of historic places, but being listed on the register doesn’t prevent an historic building from being demolished. If it’s a private owner who owns an historic building that’s listed on the register (in other words, if it’s not the federal government who owns the building), then that private owner can decide to tear down the building tomorrow and then go tear it down tomorrow (as long as the owner complies with all local permitting laws). The National Historic Preservation Act does not restrict a private owner’s ability to tear down a building in any way, and thus the Act would have been irrelevant to all of these buildings being torn down, even if the Act had existed when they were torn down. Maybe you should do some basic research before you publish another article that contains factual errors, misleads the public, contributes to misconceptions, and makes you look like you have no idea what you are doing.