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Deathwatch begins on the ruined modernist building:A work permit for the reconstruction of 2 Columbus Circle was issued yesterday, effectively defeating the decade-long effort by preservationists to have the building, designed by Edward Durell Stone, designated as a landmark.
The permit, issued by the New York City Buildings Department, allows the museum to remove the entire facade. That facade, known for its "lollipop" motif, is considered by some architects and preservationists to be an important example of widely threatened Modernist design.
Last week, 2 Columbus Circle was added to the World Monuments Fund's list of endangered sites.
Construction on the building to create a new home for the Museum of Arts and Design, formerly the American Craft Museum, is to begin in the fall. The design, by Brad Cloepfil of Allied Works Architecture in collaboration with Gary Edward Handel & Associates, would eliminate the marble surface and porthole windows. Three additional permits issued yesterday allow for demolition of the interior.
"It's pretty shocking, pretty horrible" said the architect Robert A. M. Stern, who has championed the building.
"This building is a landmark," Mr. Stern added. "We do have good modern buildings, and we don't care for them. They are difficult and they are eccentric, but that's what makes them memorable. They challenge our way of thinking, our standards of beauty and propriety, and speak to us from another generation."(NYT)
Frankly, I'm still stewing over that hideous H&M ad that blanketed the Flatiron building (pictured here; I've posted enough pix of 2 Columbus Circle).
2 columbus circle, advertisement, billboard, facade, landmark, preservation
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Posted on 6/30/2005
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