Historic Sites and Acclaimed New Work:
- Eldridge Street Synagogue: Constructed in 1887 and renovated in 2007, this National Historic Landmark is a combination of Moorish, Gothic & Romanesque styles.
- Brotherhood Synagogue: The sanctuary of this 19th century Quaker Meeting House features original pews, iron columns, and exposed brick.
- Park Avenue Christian Church: Built by Bertram Goodhue in 1911, note the buttress supports and the Tiffany stained glass windows. The Gothic sanctuary was inspired by La Sainte-Chapelle in Paris.
- The Pershing Square Signature Center: Can Frank Gehry collaborate on a 2011 performing arts theatre whose design doesn't scream Frank Gehry? Yes, he can.
- Higher Education: Academia is blossoming with a number of new schools open for inspection, including the NY School of Interior Design (NYSID) Graduate Center designed by Gensler Associates; NYU's Department of Philosophy Building renovated by Steven Holl Architects; and Rockefeller University Collaborative Research Center designed by Mitchell/Giurgola Architects. Architects from Skidmore, Owings & Merrill will be discussing an "ambitious and innovative" design for The New School's University Center, but the open dialogue is sold out.
Famous Landmarks and New Frontiers:
- Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House: Okay, so Cass Gilbert's 1907 Beaux-Arts landmark is open year-round as Smithsonian's Museum of the American Indian, but sometimes you just need an excuse.
- Terminal 5 at JFK Airport: The flowing, curvilinear form of this modern expressionist, concrete structure designed in 1962 by Eero Saarinen is suggestive of flight. Examine this 20th-century icon and the status of its ongoing restoration.
- The High Line: This transformed elevated railway, weaving above New York's West Side, is almost complete. Forget the sold out tour of the third and final section at the rail yards. Just print out a PDF map and see the work of Diller Scofidio + Renfro.
- Ground Zero Buildings: Special tours of 7 World Trade Center and the National September 11 Memorial are sold out. Rest assured, there will be other times for remembrance.
Subterranean Explorations and Spectacular Heights:
- Manhole Covers of 14th Street: The tour is sold out, but now you know where the street discs are located—14th Street from the Meatpaking District to Union Square.
- New Museum: Designed by Tokyo-based Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, this 2007 art museum rises 174 feet above street level—box by box in the Bowery. Read Paul Goldberger's 2007 review.
- The Jefferson Market Library Tower: Climb the 149 steps in this exuberant Venetian Gothic building's tower, and you'll be rewarded with spectacular views of lower Manhattan. That's good, because the Trinity Church Bell Tower tour is sold out.
Interiors and Architects:
- Lazarro Residence and Slade Residence: Most designer interiors during OHNY require reservations and most are sold out, but not these two apartments. Located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan near the Williamsburg Bridge, both venues are open without reservations, and the Lazarro houses a collection of Eames furniture.
- Davis Brody Bond + Spacesmith Architects: Talk with the firms' architects about their projects, including the National September 11 Memorial Museum.
- Thomas Phifer and Partners: Get inside the heads of the architects in their Varick Street studio.
- EverGreene Architectural Arts: Go see a building, and then discuss its restoration back at the office. Here's a chance to talk with the artists and designers who do the work of historic interior conservation. Jeff Greene's leadership and decades of experience have landed his company projects that include restorations of the Eldridge Street Synagogue, Radio City Music Hall, and the Empire State Building. What a treat!
For more information about OHNY Weekend 2012, including opening dates, online reservations, and hours for featured sites, visit www.ohny.org .
Photo of NYC high-rise © S. Carroll Jewell