Developers, good luck trying to go all out in Central Harlem

Landmarks voted unanimously Tuesday to create a new historic district

TRD New York /
May.May 30, 2018 11:30 AM

The new historic district between Lenox Avenue and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard

The Landmarks Preservation Commission voted unanimously Tuesday to create a new historic district between Lenox Avenue and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard and between West 130th and 132nd Streets. The district has about 164 buildings, and is notable for its 19th century row houses in Renaissance Revival, Romanesque Revival, Queen Anne and neo-Grec styles. The move is likely to irk developers.

“There is a lot of history tied to these buildings, from the Harlem Renaissance to the civil rights movement,” outgoing Landmarks chair Meenakshi Srinivasan said in a statement to Curbed.

The neighborhood was also home to composer Scott Joplin, along with several actors and actresses who performed at the now demolished Lafayette Theater. It was the site of the March on Washington’s national headquarters as well.

A Queen Anne-style townhouse near the historic district at 208 Lenox Avenue set a record for Central Harlem late last year when it sold for $4.59 million.

Developers and other real estate stakeholders have long railed against what they see as the city’s over-enthusiasm for creating historic districts – which protect all buildings within a defined area from development – saying that they prevent the creation of much-needed housing stock[Curbed] – Eddie Small

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