It was only last February that the Landmarks Preservation Commission granted protected status to the interior of the Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company building at 510 Fifth Avenue, the modernist masterwork of architect Gordon Bunshaft. Then, just two months later, the august commissioners gave owner Vornado Realty Trust the permission to "respectfully remodel" the landmarked mid-century interior to suit the commercial needs of retailer Joe Fresh. To make way for the big changes a slew of permits for interior demolition were filed at the Department of Buildings. Now the demo is done, the landmarked interior chewed up by a crew of excavators. What's left is an empty shell of ragged concrete.
The gut job is complete. Where the signature escalators used to rise, a big hole remains. Metal detailing has been torn down and the scraps hauled away, leaving bits of machinery littering the floor. The black granite wall that enclosed the famous bank vault has been ripped out, and the remnants fill a dumpster parked on West 43rd Street. With so much gone, the planned SOM renovation is looking more like a facsimile of a landmark. Perfectly suited for selling some really Fresh jeans?
· 510 Fifth Avenue Job Overview [NYC Department of Buildings]
· Manufacturers Hanover Trust - 510 Fifth Avenue [SOM]
· Joe Fresh Will "Respectfully Remodel" Landmarked 1950s Space [Racked]
· 510 Fifth Avenue coverage [Curbed]