Memorial services are in store for 74 Grand Street, a sorry place if there ever was one down in the heart of Soho. Following years of troubles and travails brought on by an over-eager developer next door, this stack of bricks has been reduced to rubble. The landmarked cast iron facade has been catalogued and carted away. As for the legal fight, there's no end in sight.
The Clyde Fitch Report sees the sad situation as an example of the inherent weakness of the Landmarks Preservation Commission:
Shortly after Thanksgiving last year, the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) issued a permit approving the demolition of 74 Grand Street, a landmark in the Soho-Cast Iron Historic District. The rationale for razing this architectural gem was that excavation at the adjacent lot had severely compromised the landmark’s foundation, causing it to tilt and thus posing a danger to public safety ... These foundations can quickly become compromised, however, when one goes digging around and beneath them ... the LPC staff reviewing these permit applications lack the requisite expertise to sufficiently recognize red flags ...And so it goes in the world of preservation. The creative gang at Beardwood & Co., from windows with a great view of the destructoporn, has chronicled the demise. As for the future, what's in store for the corner of Wooster and Grand is anybody's guess.
· 74 Grand Street coverage [Curbed]
· New York City’s Landmarks: Is it Really Just a House of Cards? [The Clyde Fitch Report]
· The Dismantling of 74 Grand St [Beardwood & Co. website]