Friday, June 15, 2018

St. Denis' Last Days

Earlier this year I wrote about the death of the great St. Denis building on 11th and Broadway, a building that should be landmarked but isn't, a building full of vital history.

The building was bought by Normandy Partners in 2016 and all of the tenants were removed--hundreds of small businesspeople, myself included, put out. Today, a few remain, but they will soon be gone.

photo: Phil Penman

Now we hear that Normandy is "hungry for a refinancing," as The Real Deal reports. They want $187 million for the St. Denis.

Writes TRD:

"At 799 Broadway, the funding would in part go toward the construction of a new, nearly 190,000-square-foot office building replacing the existing office property... The existing building, formerly known as the St. Denis Hotel, will be completely vacated this month and readied for demolition this fall."

And there's a new rendering of the soulless, dead-eyed nothing pile of glass to come:

What was here before? What will they be murdering? Something more alive, more haunted, more storied than most buildings -- and certainly more than this zombie stack of hollow boxes.

Beyond the St. Denis, the entire neighborhood is under threat. Send these quick and easy pre-written letters to the Mayor, the Borough President, and Councilmember Carlina Rivera. Add a note to say that the St. Denis should be protected from total demolition. You can include this history to argue for protection.


Mimi said...

I used the form letter but put in my own addendum. I am not a diplomat lol:

Once you've completely destroyed the soul of the city you won't be able to get it back. Breaking something is easier to do than building something so think carefully before you destroy this beautiful building in order to put a few more dollars into the pockets of the usual corrupt philistines (yeah, real estate developers, I'm looking at you). Those craven idiots don't care what they destroy.

Unknown said...

My therapist had an office i think in 3 different spaces at the St. Denis. It has a wonderful worn around the edges charm. The odd shape of the building made it intriguing too.i will miss it

Unknown said...

Since 2003, I practiced law at the St. Denis. I was the third to last office tenant remaining in the building when I left on April 30, 2018, along with my dog Pogo, who has since passed away just shy of 20 years of age. This place was much more than an office building and I will always have fond memories of working there for almost 15 years always accompanied by Pogo and his also now deceased brother Grady. The years went by so quickly. The present structure will be closing for good by the end of June when the last remaining retail tenant moves on. I would like to thank the wonderful managers and employees who worked there over the years for making the place so special including Robbie, Dave, Jimmy, Nick, Ly, Raphael, Anna, Ralph, Gayle, and Brice.