The St. Vincent's Hospital/Rudin Management Company development plan is one of the more pressing controversies facing the West Village, and if the scale of the proposed buildings isn't indicative of that on its own, surely the latest dispatch from the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation will sound the alarm. The note is filled with more bolding and underlining than the posted set of rules at the local swimming pool. The latest update is that State Senator Tom Duane?in a weirdly refreshing example of a politician caring about his constituents' opinions (at least on the surface)?has put up an online survey seeking Villagers' thoughts on the proposed redevelopment. Supposedly the results will help guide Duane's actions on the matter. The GVSHP is not shy about spelling out the company line.
However, one very important issue the survey asks about which might easily be overlooked is "How important to you is preserving the Smith-Raskob, Nurses Residence, Reiss and Spellman buildings?" These are the historic, landmarked buildings which St. Vincent's development partner the Rudins want to demolish to make way for a huge new luxury condo complex, whereas GVSHP has urged these buildings be retained and reused. Retaining these historic buildings will not only preserve the integrity of our landmarks regulations and of our neighborhood's character, but it will limit the amount of demolition and new construction, and eliminate the huge proposed 265-ft. tall luxury condo apartment building planned for the east side of 7th Avenue. I THEREFORE STRONGLY URGE YOU to rank this as "very important" (question #1) and a "top priority" (questions #3-5). Please also be sure to list other issues about the height and bulk of the planned new developments as "very important" and a "top priority."