Docomomo responds to plans to demolish 270 Park Avenue


Docomomo US Staff


Endangered, Threatened, midtown east
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As JPMorgan Chase and the City of New York announce plans to demolish and replace 270 Park Avenue, formerly the Union Carbide building, Docomomo US and Docomomo US New York/Tri-State have joined forces to advocate for this iconic example of corporate modernism.


Last week it was announced that the JPMorgan Chase tower at 270 Park Avenue, designed by the pioneering woman architect Natalie de Blois and Gordon Bunshaft of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) and built from 1958-60, would be the first major project of the City's Midtown East rezoning. The news was announced by the New York Times on February 21, 2018 and at first included no mention of the iconic building or the designers that created it (the article has since been edited).


Docomomo US New York/Tri-state led the request for evaluation of 270 Park Avenue as early as February 2012 and received confirmation from the Landmark Preservation Commission in 2013 that Union Carbide (270 Park Avenue) was in the top tier of "properties [that] may merit designation" in the Midtown East rezoning area. Other projects in this top tier include the Universal Pictures Building (445 Park Avenue), Girl Scouts Building (830 Third Avenue), and the United States Post Office, Franklin D. Roosevelt Station (909 Third Avenue). All of which, it should be noted, have still not been calendared for designation (five years later).  


Last Friday, Docomomo US and Docomomo US New York/Tri-state submitted a joint letter to the Landmarks Preservation Commission asking them again to consider the building for designation. Docomomo has not yet received a response. Docomomo will continue to advocate for the preservation and designation of 270 Park Avenue and encourages your support of this effort.


Click here to read the joint Docomomo letter.


Read More

Curbed | Alexandra Lange, February 22, 2018

Why SOM’s modernist Union Carbide building is worth saving


New York Magazine | Justin Davidson, February 22, 2018

The Death of a Skyscraper


AM New York | February 22, 2018

JPMorgan Chase plans to replace headquarters in midtown east


The New York Times | Ada Louise Huxtable, October 30, 1960

The Significance of our new skyscrapers


The New York Times | Ada Louise Huxtable, December 15, 1957

Park Avenue School of Architecture



Midtown East Rezoning (Chapter 6: Historic and Cultural Resources): Final Environmental Impact Statement