After being shot down in April, the team representing the Howard Hughes Corporation returned to the Landmarks Preservation Commission with a revised proposal to makeover the 1983 Fulton Market Building at the South Street Seaport. The commission said SHoP Architects' edited design is "less mall-y" than the first iteration, and it won their approval, putting it on the road to reality.
Gregg Pasquarelli of SHoP Architects and Elise Quasebarth of the preservation firm Higgins Quasebarth & Partners led the presentation, pointing to how the new footprint better matches current conditions. Their new proposal retains the existing canopy and replaces old bluestone with new bluestone, not a substitute material. It also better keeps the idea of the old market stalls and includes replacement of the garage doors with echoing glass. Plus, a colored and illuminable scrim would be used behind the windows in the upstairs movie theater area.
The LPC commissioners backed the plan. Frederick Bland said it would make the area feel a "little bit more lively" and also noted that while we may not look on the building's actual design with incredible fondness right now, one day it will be regarded as a great 1980s building. Margery Perlmutter said it was "extremely appropriate," while Michael Goldblum said it was "less mall-y" and more appropriate for the "urban space." Chairman Robert Tierney also said it was "extremely appropriate" and said it would "speak to the district."
Howard Hughes, like loads of other people in this city, really love SHoP Architects. The firm also created the soon-to-rise new Pier 17 that will replace the currently-being-demolished old Pier 17, and Howard Hughes hopes to build a SHoP-designed 50-story tower and marina.
—Evan Bindelglass is a local freelance journalist, photographer, cinephile, and foodie. You can e-mail him, follow him on Twitter @evabin, or check out his personal blog.
· Fulton Market's 'All-American Mall' Makeover Fails To Impress [Curbed]
· All South Street Seaport coverage [Curbed]