Sunday, July 25, 2010

Preserving Historic Preservation in New York City

One interesting problem in preservation in NYC, where buildings as young as 40 years old can be considered, is in the sub-surface remains, or archaeology beneath the streets and properties. With the new off-the-shelf recording devices, i.e., digital infra-red transits and laser imaging devices, cameras for close-range photogrammetry, etc., that aspect of the past can be recorded quickly and often has gone almost hand-in-hand, by necessity, with the new development, with many of the Landmarks Preservation Commission overseen projects. I went to Stony Brook University with its first archaeologist. From the now US landmarked National Monument African Burial Ground, first landmarked by the LPC, to the "First Almshouse" cemetery inside City Hall Park and many others, they have consistently been involved in the transition between the past and the future, as is required by Federal and State law. Sure, it may seem to cost a bit more, "holding up" development, but when the early history of the city is further understood, we find more explanations of where we were and where we're going. I find that important and their role in it part of "preservation" even if the archeology and development often destroys what it studies, we've investigated the record.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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