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NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY District oFFice; 98-08 Nonhorn Bd, Corona New York 11366 eer mewaen ‘iow York Sate Bac ALBaNy OFFICE oom 848. Legotaive Ofc Baling, Albany, Now York 12248 (Sis) ea5.a5er FAK [sia as-4Ses Provempore mai aubeassemtysiae jus Punne Pletitepane ‘November 18, 2015 NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission Ms. Mary Beth Betts 1 Centre Street 9" Floor North ‘New York, NY 10007 Re: Old St. James Parish hall, 86-02 Broadway, Queens Dear Ms. Betts: am writing to respectfully request that the agency reevaluate its most recent decision to not recommend the Old St. James Episcopal Parish Hall, 86-02 Broadway in Queens to the full commission for further consideration as an individual New York City Landmark. In your letter addressed to State Senator Tony Avella dated September 22, 2015 you submit several reasons for this decision: 1. The Parish was significantly remodeled in 1883. The minimum age for a building to qualify for New York City Landmark designation is 30 years. The 1883 remodeling occurred 148 years ago. 2. The Parish was resided in the 20" century leaving little historic fabric on the exterior. In 1963, the United States Postal Service proposed to buy the parish, tear it down and replace it with a new post office. The church rejected the offer and cited the historic importance of the building. Today the church is used as a community center which hosts Various organizations such as the Boys Scouts, Alcoholics Anonymous, various Veterans groups and small church services. Although there is litte 18 century fabric on the exterior, the building has the original 19 century shingles. There seems to be an inconsistency with the Commission's selection process as well. The Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace and Fraunces Tavern are both designated NYC Landmarks yet neither contain their original fabric, nor were they reconstructed to their original style. In 2004, the parish underwent major restoration which included a new roof, restoration of the cedar siding, windows, eaves and brackets. The 1883 decorative brackets on the gables were also restored. The restoration architect was Kaitsen Woo and his general contractor was 53 Restorations, Inc. The total cost was $430,000 which included a $150,000 loan from the Landmarks Conservancy. The Conservancy ultimately awarded the restoration project its Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award. Old St. James Episcopal Parish Hall is a landmark establishment which still provides services to the community almost 300 years since it was erected. It is one of the oldest and most historic buildings in Queens, worthy of recognition and preservation by the City of New York. Moreover, the residents and businesses in Elmhurst, Queens would benefit from potential increase in tourism and local consumer spending brought on by the parish’s historical landmark designation. Thank you for your commitment to historic preservation. I respectfully request that the agency reverse its decision and forward Old St. James Episcopal Parish Hall’s application to the Landmarks Preservation Commission for full consideration to be designated as an individual New York City Landmark. Tlook forward to hearing from you in the near future, Sincerely, Assemblyman Jefftion L. Aubry Speaker Pro Tempore ‘New York State Assembly