Landmarks Designates 1 Wall Street Building Banking Room

Image Credit: LPC.

On June 25, 2024, the Landmarks Preservation Commission voted unanimously to designate the 1 Wall Street Banking Room (known as the Red Room) as an interior landmark. The 1 Wall Street Building, located at the intersection of Broadway and Wall Street in the heart of Manhattan’s financial district, was designated an individual New York City landmark in 2001. The Banking Room was built in 1931 by architect Ralph Walker and muralist Hildreth Meière.

The Red Room served as a reception room and banking hall for the Irving Trust and Bank Company. Following the 1929 financial market collapse, the Irving Trust Company aimed to create a room that exuded permanent wealth and had an inviting reception area for Irving Trust Company’s clients. The room, emulating a glittering jewelry box, does exactly that.

The room has an abstract mosaic interior and an elaborate stylistic departure from the usual stone-clad aesthetic of a banking hall. The walls were made to mimic the curved stone facades of the Art Deco skyscraper’s exterior. The intricate mosaic warm colored tile that makes up the walls begin in oxblood red near the floor and fade upward to orange across the ceiling and web-like patterns of gilded tiles creating a striking verticality.

Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development and Workforce Maria Torres-Springer said, “The 1 Wall Street Banking Room, one of the most beautiful interior spaces in New York, is now designated as a landmark within a major office-to-residential conversion project. With the designations of 1 Wall Street and the Banking Room, LPC emphasizes how our goals of preserving historic spaces and building housing are complementary.”

Landmarks Preservation Commission Chair Sarah Carroll said “Designed by Ralph Walker, the Banking Room of 1 Wall Street has stunning mosaics created by Hildreth Meière, a master muralist who led the way for women in the decorative arts, and is one of New York City’s architectural gems from the height of the Art Deco era. After a thoughtful restoration, the dazzling beauty of the “Red Room” will once again be open for the public to experience and enjoy, and today’s vote to designate this special interior landmark ensures it will continue to delight visitors for years to come.”

By: Chelsea Ramjeawan (Chelsea is the CityLaw intern and a New York Law School student, Class of 2025.)




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