Monday, September 14, 2009

Prospect Heights Historic District Designated Landmark Status!


September 14, 2009

Contact: Amyre Loomis at (718) 260-9191

Congratulations to the Community from Council Member Letitia James on Landmark Designation of the Prospect Heights Historic District

It’s official. The Prospect Heights Historic District was formally designated last Thursday, when the City Council’s Committee on Land Use voted unanimously to support the largest landmark designation in New York City in almost 20 years. The Council is expected to confirm the vote of the committee on September 17.

“Advocates in this community have worked hard towards achieving their goal. Preservation of Prospect Heights, an architecturally diverse and human-scaled neighborhood is much deserved, and needed now more than ever due to development pressures. This area has already experienced the demolition of historic buildings and out-of-scale construction. I am glad that we can look forward to maintaining the character of our illustrious past and protecting the fabric of this historic neighborhood,” said Council Member James.

With nearly 850 buildings, Prospect Heights is one of the city’s most superb brownstone districts, comprised of beautiful late 19th and early 20th-century residential buildings (for more detailed information, please read the Landmarks Preservation Commissions 488 page designation report). It ranks as the fifth largest historic district in the City overall. The designation initiative was lead by Council Member Letitia James, the Prospect Heights Neighborhood Development Council (PHNDC), and the Municipal Art Society of New York (MAS).

“Prospect Heights is among Brooklyn’s most distinguished, cohesive neighborhoods because of its architectural integrity and diversity, scale, tree-lined streets and residential character,” said LPC Chairman Tierney. “These features lend the neighborhood its unique sense of place, making it a natural for historic district status.”

Said PHNDC Chair Danae Oratowski, “We are grateful for the efforts of our Council Member Letitia James and her colleagues in the City Council in acting quickly to preserve our historic neighborhood.”

Council Member James, Chair of the Landmarks Preservation Commission Robert B. Tierney, historian Francis Morrone, and Gib Veconi of the Prospect Heights Neighborhood Development Council are recorded on a video (, which was created by the MAS showing their work with PHNDC. After some basic training in surveying from MAS preservationists, an army of more than twenty volunteers from Prospect Heights took to the streets and surveyed and photographed roughly one thousand buildings.

“The result (of the survey) was not just the designation; the act of engaging residents in the process brought the community together and provided a new sense of neighborhood identity,” said MAS.


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