Our tenement buildings have been home to waves of immigrants for generations and were once the center of one of the most vital and bustling centers of commerce in the City. Their facades reflect an era of intricate design and construction that would never be replicated today, but whose intricate features are rarely noticed by pedestrians hurriedly passing by.
Please join Richard Moses, President of LESPI, for a one hour tour as he points out buildings and the beautiful features that make our neighborhood special and worthy of historic designation.
At our regular meeting on February 8, Grand Street Democrats voted to support the designation of an historic district on the lower east side. The proposed district encompasses historically intact buildings south of Delancey Street between Forsyth and Essex Streets (including many of the buildings around the Tenement Museum).
The area has been defined by the Lower East Side Preservation Initiative, a group of local preservationists who were instrumental in getting parts of the East Village designated as historic districts.
The text of our letter to the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission is below.
Meenakshi Srinivasan, Chair
NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission
1 Centre Street, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10007
Manhattan’s Lower East Side is recognized as America’s iconic immigrant neighborhood with unsurpassed architectural, historical, and cultural significance to our city, state, and nation. Its great variety of age-old tenements, institutional, and commercial buildings not only enrich the streets with architecture based on human scale and beautifully crafted ornament, but have given the community and its residents a cohesive and stable environment with a strongly identifiable sense of history and place.
The only way to effectively preserve the historic streetscapes of this vital neighborhood is through New York City historic district designation. Therefore, we call upon the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to landmark, without delay, the historically intact areas of the Lower East Side south of Delancey Street, as proposed by the Lower East Side Preservation Initiative and Friends of the Lower East Side.
Grand Street Democrats is a local club of active Lower East Side residents. We have a keen interest in honoring the unique history of our neighborhood while preserving the area’s opportunity to continue to grow and thrive. Please let us know if there is anything more we can do to assist the LPC in this matter.
Jeremy Sherber, President
Grand Street Democrats