I’m writing regarding David D. Turner’s advertorial of February 27th. There’s been almost no other visible public outcry about what St. Luke’s has done in yielding their parking lot for a new residential tower. It was a betrayal of a community they’ve long served, both passively, by preserving green space and open space, and actively in serving their parish.
They’ve now used their property to accelerate the transformation of the Village into a glassy, exclusive haven for the very well-off. More luxury housing was the last thing needed here. It’s a further insult to a neighborhood that’s seen far too much high-rent, high-cost blight, driving out beloved businesses and preventing renewal of the bohemian community that made the area a magnet, and becoming even less accommodating to working-class residents.
It’s even gutted the adjacent gracious rowhouses that had been very much part of the community fabric.
It’s additionally impacted the garden, since the house’s gardens were visible and part of the experience of entering from Barrow Street, an entrance now obliterated for a new one, placed so that high-end residents don’t have to be bothered by the temporary presence of the less well-off on their way to a garden they’re allowed to share in.
Presumably the new luxury building has paid for another dis-enhancement of an important landmark, the school, with its Postmodernist addition’s cladding (except next to the turret, where a brick-like color and pattern were used) not at all in keeping with the historic district. The 1980s were not the 19th century.