“But what if I want my white vinyl windows?!” Cranky old guy just couldn’t let it go. Saturday’s meeting to address the landmarking of Bedford Corners was informative and interesting, but it was Cranky Old Guy who stole the show….at least for me.
Before we arrived, I wondered who the hell would hold a meeting on a Saturday in the middle of the summer. I thought nobody would show, but it was standing room only. May I add that my block, which is about 3 feet long, was well represented.
I scribbled some notes, but mostly I just distracted Brownstoner’s Montrose Morris, whom was trying to pay attention like a professional blogger. Hey, I’m sure she’ll have a much more informative post later this morning.
So, here are some fun facts about historic landmarking:
* There are about 100 landmarked districts in all 5 boroughs. Most of them are in Manhattan, followed by Brooklyn.
* Brooklyn Heights was the first landmarked district in the County of Kings.
* Guess which boro is the most resistant to landmarking? Come on, you know.
* Less than 3% of all properties in NYC are landmarked.
* In 1965, it was Mayor Wagner whom started landmarking districts. (Interesting. I was like “Mayor Who?” I can only remember as far back as Lindsay and I guess I don’t remember my history lessons.)
But back to Cranky Old Guy. During the Q&A, he asked if Landmarks was going to tell him what he can and can’t do to his house. The response was that Landmarks does indeed oversee replacement doors and windows on historic homes in the district. There was back and forth for a bit.
“But it’s MY home. What if I don’t want to put in expensive wood windows?”
“Sir, Landmarks doesn’t make you install wood. They will approve wood or aluminum windows. Not vinyl.”
“But what if I want white vinyl? It’s MY home. How can they tell me what to do with MY home!”
“You can do aluminum. Not vinyl. The cost is only a bit more and they will last you longer.”
And on and on it went until someone said “It isn’t really YOUR home because you pay property taxes.”
If you live in the designated area, you really should get involved. The neighborhood needs to get behind these issues. It’s not like a couple of volunteers take care of it. Strength in numbers gets it done.
Please go to the website to learn more.