The latest news on New York architecture.

  • Working with Historic Preservation Societies on Building Restoration

    Working with Historic Preservation Societies on Building Restoration

    Historic preservation societies are the advocates, guardians, and staunch defenders of the historic built environment. They keep long-standing buildings and neighborhoods safe through advocacy for landmark designation and zoning changes that monitor and regulate new development. These organizations provide not only leadership and education, but resources, support, and expertise to the architects and builders who preserve historic structures for the next generation to use and enjoy.

    These societies often provide source material such as photo archives, blueprints, and historical records that are critical to developing a restoration project that is true to the spirit of the original while incorporating changes that modern living demands. The rigorous work of balancing the desires of owners, developers, and the community with the goals of historic preservation societies is a feat that requires a unique architectural disposition and a specialized skill set.

    In New York City, the  NYC Landmarks Preservation CommissionNYC Landmarks Preservation Commission is the government body that designates buildings or neighborhoods as historic, culturally significant, or part of the heritage of New York City that need preservation and protection. The Commission also approves all requests for renovation, repair, or retrofit of such structures.

    Privately operated preservation and historical societies work with the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to provide expertise, and, in many cases, advocate for historically significant buildings through the lengthy and detailed process of landmark designation. Private societies also manage and administer funding for restoration and repair work through a system of loans and grants. Through their work, these societies directly impact community revitalization and the economic health of their neighborhoods.

    The Greenwich Village Society for Historical PreservationGreenwich Village Society for Historical Preservation , for example, not only works directly on the designation and restoration of historic buildings in i neighborhood, but is also active in the community’s economic development. It supports small business and retail diversity and offers a number of educational and outreach programs.

    The following references are links to some of NYC's historical preservation groups.

    Greenwich Village Society for Historical PreservationGreenwich Village Society for Historical Preservation

    Historic Districts CouncilHistoric Districts Council

    The New York Landmarks ConservancyThe New York Landmarks Conservancy

    The Preservation League of NY StateThe Preservation League of NY State

    For more information on New York City building restoration, please contact us.

  • Architects Preserving History

    Architects Preserving History

    What most people think architects do: imagine and draw.

    What architects really do: design and innovate.
    Many architects take it a step further and specialize. In New York City there are a number of full service architectural firms that could even be called historians because of their commitment to preserving architectural history.

    The Preservation Expertise

    Preservation is more than just restoring the integrity of a structure that has deteriorated over time. The artistry involved in preservation architecture endeavors to maintain the integrity of the historical significance of bygone construction methods. It is not enough for a building to appear as a copy of an original. The use of traditional building materials preserves the personality imbued within the structure by the original craftsmen from a particular moment in history.

    Why a Preservation Commitment Matters

    In 1965, the late Mayor Robert F. Wagner created the Landmarks Preservation Commission and the Landmarks Law to preserve historic landmarks and neighborhoods. Today thousands of buildings, historic interiors and even whole neighborhoods in all five boroughs happily exist under the law’s protection. In fact, 27% of Manhattan’s buildings have landmark status, all of which need architects with specific knowledge, experience and skill sets.

    A Record of Excellence

    If your historic structure is in need of restoration, place your confidence in an architectural firm wholly committed to historic preservation. Scott Henson Architect’s record of excellence can be seen in other New York City projects such as the Fleming Smith Warehouse, the Puck Building, the Franklin-Hudson Building, and the Eberhard Faber Pencil Factory just to name a few. To add your own building's name to such an illustrious list, please contact us.