On December 12, 2023, the Landmarks Preservation Commission voted to calendar the Heckscher Building at 730 Fifth Avenue for future designation. The building, now the Crown Building, is one of Fifth Avenue’s early skyscrapers.
The 25-story building has a nine-story base and 21-story tower with an octagonal tower on top and a steep pyramidal roof. The building, designed in the French Renaissance Revival style, was designed by Warren & Wetmore and completed in 1922. Warren & Wetmore also designed the New York Yacht Club, the New York Central Building and Grand Central Terminal. The building was commissioned by the Anahma Realty Corporation, backed by developer August Heckscher, George Backer, and Charles D. Wetmore.
The building was one of the first buildings to conform to the 1916 zoning resolution. The building’s facade features limestone, buff brick, and cream terracotta bands. The roof features large dormer windows and bull’s eye windows, and a multi-story chimney stack and a rooster-shaped weathervane.
The building was planned to have stores, show rooms and offices. Six rooms on the 12th floor were rented to the Museum of Modern Art for several years, and the museum held its inaugural exhibition here in November 1929. The exhibit featured artists including Van Gogh, Seurat, Cezanne, and Gauguin, and featured the Modern Architecture: International Exhibition, which attracted 33,000 people over a six week period in 1932. The building was renamed the Crown Building in 1983. The upper floors of the building were converted to a hotel and residences in 2022.
Landmarks voted unanimously to calendar the building. A public hearing will be held at a later date.
By: Veronica Rose (Veronica is the Editor of CityLand and a New York Law School graduate, Class of 2018.)