The New York City Need A Marble Clad Building

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What happens to a city when it loses reliable points of association with extraordinary moments in the past? Did New York City need a marble-clad building with Venetian motifs and a curved façade fronting on one of its few major important intersections and Central Park, an edifice designed by a Edward Durell Stone whose work is not much in evidence in the city? Even the most majestic cities like New York City are pockmarked with horrors. The knowledge that every shade of architectural experience, from sublime to excruciating, can exist in such compressed space that takes part of a city’s seductive pull. Yet there are a handful of buildings in New York that fail to contribute even on these grounds. Usually it ends with a wrecking ball, but in this case with 2 Columbus Circle - it was demolished, rebuilt, and then renovated again - taking away something crucial from the building’s history and it 's initial intent. Words that have been associated with this building are “queer,” “hate,” and “traumatic.” When and how do these words surface when describing a man-made structure? By masking the original design of 2 Columbus Circle and not declaring it a landmark, the city erased an exceptional piece of history that was deeply embezzled in our culture during the 1950’s up until the 1970’s. The dispute with 2 Columbus Circle began in 1956, with the headlines in the New York Times, written by Sanka Knox: “A. & P. Heir to Build 10- Story Gallery for Modern Works at Cost of $2,500,000.”

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