Page 5 of 6 FirstFirst 123456 LastLast
Results 61 to 75 of 83

Thread: New York Public Library Restoration

  1. #61

    Default

    I wish I had that preoblem with books. Reminds me of the Collyer brothers' brownstone, with all that garbage inside being the only way to keep the thing from collapsing in on itself.

    $350 million renovation of NYPL’s Fifth Avenue branch will endanger iconic Rose Reading Room: suit


    Plaintiffs in lawsuit claim the construction, slated to begin later this year, will hurt the building because the stacks to be demolished go down seven stories and provide structural support.


    By Barbara Ross / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
    Published: Thursday, July 4, 2013, 12:58 PM
    Updated: Friday, July 5, 2013, 4:26 AM

    Print



    Craig Warga/New York Daily News

    The large stone lions that guard the entrance of the Fifth Avenue branch. The building’s exterior has already received city and national landmark status.



    THE NEW YORK Public Library’s plan to remove more than 1 million books from the main research facility on Fifth Ave. is under court attack from scholars and preservationists.
    A Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, an architect and a former publishing executive filed a lawsuit late Wednesday to block the $300 million project that will demolish stacks under the Rose Reading Room.
    They claim the construction, which is to start this year, will endanger the reading room because the steel book stacks go down seven stories and provide structural support.
    Craig Warga/New York Daily News

    The plaintiffs in the suit include a Pulitizer Prize-winning historian, architect, and a former publishing exec. They are also appealing to the City Landmarks Commission, claiming there will be damage to the building’s exterior.


    Of the 4 million books and documents in the stacks now, library officials said they plan to move up to 1 million of the “least used” titles to a warehouse in New Jersey.
    The remaining material would stay in Manhattan, some in stacks to be built under Bryant Park.
    RELATED: CITY COUNCIL APPROVES BAM TOWER
    Designed by Norman Foster

    The plaintiffs claim the construction, which is to start this year, will endanger the reading room because the steel book stacks go down seven stories and provide structural support.


    “The destruction of the (old) stacks . . . will surely doom the NYPL’s mission to serve the public’s research and reference needs,” the plaintiffs said in papers filed in Manhattan Supreme Court. “If the stacks are destroyed, the books — the unique and distinguishing asset of the NYPL — can never be returned to their rightful place under the Rose Main Reading Room.”
    The stacks will be replaced with a circulating library that will have a four-story atrium.
    “We think the renovation offers a great opportunity to improve libraries for all New Yorkers,” said the library’s vice president, Ken Weine.
    Designed by Norman Foster

    Of the 3.5 million books currently housed at the library, up to 2 million are slated to go to a warehouse in New Jersey.


    “We have not yet reviewed the complaint,” he added.
    The litigants have also appealed to the city Landmarks Commission to declare the stacks and the reading room a landmark. The building’s exterior, with its large stone lions, already has city and national landmark status.
    RELATED: $350 MILLION RENOVATION OF NYPL’S FIFTH AVENUE BRANCH WILL ENDANGER ICONIC ROSE READING ROOM
    Designed by Norman Foster

    Plaintiffs have sued to halt the demolition of stacks underneath the iconic Rose Reading Room at the New York Public Library’s Fifth Avenue branch. Seen here are the renderings of the new library.


    The opponents charge that the plan — which requires the modification of some windows and other parts of the building’s Beaux Arts exterior — was quietly rushed through the Landmarks Commission, the court papers say.
    Plaintiffs include W.E.B. DuBois historian David Levering Lewis, architect Mark Alan Hewitt, who specializes in historic preservation, and Jack Macrae, former editor-in-chief of Henry Holt & Company.
    They are asking the courts to halt city funds from going to the project until the city does environmental- and economic-impact studies and to block any “wholesale removal of books or other Central Library materials.”
    Library officials have said they plan to finance the project partly by selling two nearby buildings for $200 million. They also expect to get $150 million from the city.
    The opponents contend the estimated cost could go as high as $350 million, and the projected real estate revenue is too high.
    The plaintiffs also say the nonprofits that run the library — the NYPL and the Astor, Lenox and Tilden foundations — are violating the library’s charter, which established it as a research facility, not a circulating library.

    Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nati...#ixzz2YChr3D80

  2. #62

    Default

    It just never ends with these guys, does it?

  3. #63
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    NYC - Downtown
    Posts
    32,654

    Default

    Yep. Never short on the number of Philistines hell bent on annihilation of NYC's great buildings.

  4. #64
    Forum Veteran
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    2,123

    Default

    don't mess with perfection, new isn't always better

  5. #65

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GordonGecko View Post
    don't mess with perfection, new isn't always better
    By "perfection", you mean a falling apart central circulating library, a massive cash crunch, and no space in the central library for modern research?

    Let's be honest; the protestors are old academics pissed that their personal playground is being invaded by the public. They don't want the public invading their currently off-limits space.

  6. #66
    Forum Veteran
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    2,123

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ASchwarz View Post
    By "perfection", you mean a falling apart central circulating library, a massive cash crunch, and no space in the central library for modern research?

    Let's be honest; the protestors are old academics pissed that their personal playground is being invaded by the public. They don't want the public invading their currently off-limits space.
    I'm no old academic, I simply enjoy working on my laptop in the Rose reading room every once in a while, and I think everything about the library is magnificent. It would be nice to have access to the off-limits space, so maybe it's just me but I don't believe that destroying it is the way to accomplish that goal

  7. #67
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    7,476

    Default

    Library Puts Renovation Plan on Pause

    By Jennifer Maloney

    The New York Public Library agreed Friday not to start construction on a controversial renovation of its flagship Fifth Avenue building until at least October, in response to the second lawsuit filed this month to stop the dismantling of century-old book stacks.

    At an appearance in New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, the library’s attorney, Richard Leland, signed an agreement stipulating that the library would not undertake any construction on the stacks until the later of two dates: a court hearing scheduled for October, or the completion of an environmental review being conducted by the city.

    The city’s review began in the spring. A spokeswoman for the city law department said it wasn’t yet clear how long the review would take to complete.

    Two separate groups of scholars, writers and preservationists this month have filed lawsuits seeking to stop the library from gutting the seven levels of iron and steel stacks that until recently have held millions of volumes from the library’s research collection. The stacks serve as the architectural support structure for the Schwarzman building’s famed Rose Main Reading Room.

    “We trust that the Library’s trustees will… use this opportunity to open up the Central Library Plan to a full, independent review,” said Michael Hiller, the attorney for Citizens Defending Libraries, which filed the second suit and held a rally Friday in front of the Schwarzman building.

    Neil Rudenstine, chairman of the library’s board of trustees, said in an emailed statement that opponents of the renovation plan “fail to acknowledge that the problems that the renovation seeks to solve demand urgent action.”

    Embracing the status quo-while books deteriorate, while patrons of our busiest branch work in sub-standard space, and while financial problems steadily worsen-seriously risks the quality and effectiveness of the entire NYPL system,” Mr. Rudenstine added.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/metropolis/2013...novation-plan/

  8. #68

    Default

    This is one I don't get. As always, the highly publicized preservation fights in NYC seem to show no sense of priorities or proportion.

    Why is there no concern about, oh, Midtown East getting obliterated for a new slew of Kaufman / Moinian specials ... but the city freaks out when someone proposes putting the library stacks under Bryant Park and opening up to people the area the stacks currently inhabit?

    That makes sense to me, and seems to be indicative of the library trying to move with the times. Razing the MTA building, Roosevelt Hotel, and tons of other pre-war buildings in Midtown, the Garment District, the Flatiron District, Chinatown, the Financial District, and other areas under fire, that are vital elements of the tapestry that make NY what it is seems like a much, much, much greater cause for outrage than this.

  9. #69
    Forum Veteran
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    2,123

    Default

    Plenty of pre-war buildings to go around. Beaux-Arts marble masterpieces?... not so much.

  10. #70
    Forum Veteran MidtownGuy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    East Midtown
    Posts
    6,832

    Default

    While I agree with the idea of opening up a large new space for the public, with windows on the park, the current design is disappointing. I'd like to see a ceiling that looks magnificent, on a par with the others in the building but styled from the 21st century. The railings and balustrades should be more interesting and artful. Too little imagination was put forth to deserve using this design inside one of our city's most gorgeous buildings.

  11. #71

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Stroika View Post
    Why is there no concern about, oh, Midtown East getting obliterated for a new slew of Kaufman / Moinian specials ... but the city freaks out when someone proposes putting the library stacks under Bryant Park and opening up to people the area the stacks currently inhabit?
    I don't quite see the comparison. The city isn't freaking out about the library renovation; it's a suit by one group, which if nothing else, will force the architects to reconsider the structural integrity of the plan.

    It's not true that nobody is opposed to the Midtown rezoning.

    Finally, there's no comparison between the Midtown East buildings under threat and the library. Does anyone not think that the library is one of the most important landmarks in the city?

  12. #72
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    7,476

    Default

    New York Public Library Rethinks Design

    In Response to Critics, a New Renovation Plan Will Focus on Books, not Atriums

    By JENNIFER MALONEY


    The New York Public Library, responding to outcry over its plans to demolish century-old book stacks, will this fall unveil a new design that preserves a significant portion of them, its president, Anthony Marx, said Tuesday.

    The library disclosed its plans in response to questions from The Wall Street Journal about alternatives it had considered to the $300 million renovation, which has sparked two lawsuits brought by scholars and preservationists, including a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, aiming to block the stacks' destruction.

    Those alternatives, since scrapped, included mothballing the stacks or restoring and opening them to researchers as the Bibliothèque Nationale de France is doing, according to documents obtained from the State Historic Preservation Office through a public-records request. Until now, the renovation plan for the New York Public Library's landmark Fifth Avenue building has called for dismantling the stacks and replacing them with a new circulating library designed by British architect Norman Foster.


    Noah Rabinowitz for The Wall Street Journal Stacks in New York before they were emptied.

    The library still intends to build a new circulating library in the 80,000-square-foot space under the Rose Main Reading Room. But in contrast to renderings released in December, which envisioned a vast atrium, the new design will incorporate the stacks as "a prominent feature," Mr. Marx said. They would hold the circulating library's books and be configured in a way that allows patrons to "see and experience" what the stacks were like as originally conceived by the building's architects, Carrère and Hastings, he said.

    Reading rooms will be emphasized, "rather than atriums," Mr. Marx said. The design is not yet complete, and the library has not yet calculated its cost, he said.

    The plan still would entail a feat of engineering: The stacks currently form the structural support of the Rose Main Reading Room, holding it up like a 53-foot-high Erector Set. The weight of the room must be shifted to new supports before the stacks can be removed.

    The planned renovation of the library's Stephen A. Schwarzman building would consolidate three libraries into one, replacing the dilapidated Mid-Manhattan Library as well as the Science, Industry and Business Library.

    The State Historic Preservation Office is reviewing the renovation plan in an advisory capacity because the project received state money and because the building is landmarked. The city is also conducting an environmental review.

    At the state's request, the library submitted details in March and June to state officials on the alternatives it had considered to removing the stacks, and why it hadn't pursued them.

    According to those documents, the library examined the renovation of the Bibliothèque Nationale, a library in Paris designed by Henri Labrouste. Its Labrouste Storeroom, a closed book-stack area adjacent to the famed reading room, the Salle Labrouste, was completed in 1868. As part of a broader renovation budgeted at €212 million (about $284 million), the storeroom in 2015 will be opened to the public for the first time, after a restoration that will peel away elements that have been added in recent decades, said the project's architect, Bruno Gaudin. Because the storeroom cannot be fireproofed, the four-story space will be able to hold no more than 199 people at a time.

    The New York Public Library's metal stack structure, completed in 1911, was inspired by the cast-iron stacks of the Bibliothèque Nationale, said Barry Bergdoll, a Museum of Modern Art curator who organized an exhibition earlier this year on Labrouste's work.

    In response to calls to disclose more details on its renovation plans, the New York Public Library has pledged to release independent cost estimates for its alternatives. Those estimates are not yet available, Mr. Marx said.


    Bruno Gaudin Bibliothèque Nationale's Labrouste storeroom, seen before a renovation that will open it to readers.

    Until they were emptied in March, the Schwarzman building's stacks held millions of volumes from the library's research collection. In their submissions to the state, library officials said they considered adding temperature and humidity controls to make the stacks conform with current preservation standards. They estimated that such a project would cost $50 million. It would not be feasible to fireproof the stacks, they said.

    If the stacks were updated, or simply left unused, the library could renovate the current home of the Mid-Manhattan Library rather than move it into the Schwarzman building. Mr. Marx has said such a project would require closing the busy Midtown branch for two years—a scenario that would cause significant disruption for patrons. But in the documents provided to the state, the library acknowledged that it could renovate the branch while keeping it open. That would increase the estimated cost of renovating that building to $180 million from $130 million, it said.

    There would be other financial drawbacks. The library would forgo the $100 million it expects to receive from the sale of the Mid-Manhattan Library. The city's commitment of $150 million could drop, and such a renovation would involve fewer naming opportunities than a Schwarzman building renovation, which could discourage some private donations, the library said. It would also forgo the operating-cost savings it expects to achieve through consolidating three buildings into one.

    Mr. Marx said the library's new design would make a section of the historic stacks accessible to the public for the first time. Leaving the stacks empty and untouched "would be irresponsible for the library," he said. "It's probably one of the largest indoor spaces in Manhattan. We need to use it for the public."

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...LEFTTopStories

  13. #73
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    NYC - Downtown
    Posts
    32,654

    Default

    Hallelujah!!

    New York Public Library shelves plans to renovate flagship site

    Trustees say costs and public opposition led to reversal

    THE REAL DEAL
    May 07, 2014 02:20PM



    New York Public Library at Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street

    The New York Public Library canceled plans to renovate its main branch at 42nd Street. The city had pledged $150 million to the project, which will now solely involve the rehabbing of the Mid-Manhattan building at 455 Fifth Avenue near 40th Street.

    Library trustees plan to keep the Mid-Manhattan branch open during the renovation, rolling out changes in stages. The trustees said the $150 million will go toward other purposes.

    Under the original Central Library plan, book stacks under the main reading room were to be removed. But a study found that the 42nd Street building renovation costs would be higher than projected. Initially it was set to cost $300 million. The project has also been hit with four lawsuits. But the project received approval from the city environmental review and the state’s Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, as previously reported.

    “When the facts change, the only right thing to do as a public-serving institution is to take a look with fresh eyes and see if there is a way to improve the plans and to stay on budget,” Tony Marx, president of the library, told the New York Times. [NYT]Mark Maurer

  14. #74

    Default

    "Hallelujah!" Agreed. Good news for a change.

  15. #75

    Default

    Hooray. It's perfect as is, and moving the stacks to New Jersey would have been a sacrilege. But I would hope the $150M would be redirected away from the main branch (or Schwartzman Building, if you prefer -- I don't), to the branches, many of which are crumbling. How about a $1M upgrade to each of 150 neighborhood branches spread throughout the five boroughs. How great a message would that be for our new mayor?

Page 5 of 6 FirstFirst 123456 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Greenwich Street 'Restoration'
    By Kris in forum New York City Guide For New Yorkers
    Replies: 46
    Last Post: December 21st, 2013, 05:05 PM
  2. The Bronx River's Restoration
    By Kris in forum New York City Guide For New Yorkers
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: December 8th, 2012, 11:29 PM
  3. Public Observation Decks
    By JCDJ in forum New York City Guide For Visitors
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: August 5th, 2003, 03:36 PM
  4. Big Planning Projects: Avoiding the Public?
    By Agglomeration in forum New York City Guide For New Yorkers
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: April 10th, 2003, 12:33 AM
  5. Former Tiffany Building Gets a Solid Restoration
    By Edward in forum New York Real Estate
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: February 13th, 2002, 11:54 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


Google+ - Facebook - Twitter - Meetup

Edward's photos on Flickr - Wired New York on Flickr - In Queens - In Red Hook - Bryant Park - SQL Backup Software