Lion House to get $18.9 million face lift

Work will restore features removed since i ts 1899-1910 construction. Landmarks issued a binding report approving an $18.9 million renovation of the Lion House at the Bronx Zoo, a designated City landmark since 2000, which was built in 1899-1910 and designed by Heins & La Farge.

The Department of Design & Construction proposed substantial repair work, including restoration of the carved terra cotta, copper roofing, limestone and brick masonry and existing parapets. To return the Lion House to its original appearance, DDC proposed new chimneys, skylights, doors and a studio cage, all to mirror historic plans. Alterations would include construction of a tall retaining wall, replacement of entry stairs with a gradual ramp, relocation of two lion sculptures, and the addition of new enlarged windows, doors and sculptures.

During the approval process, DDC reduced the retaining wall, eliminated banners and removed existing modern doors. In approving the work, Landmarks found that the repairs and renovations would return the Lion House to its original condition, help promote its long term preservation and would not detract from the significant historic fabric of the Lion House.

The Commission conditioned the permit on the additional approval of final drawings of the proposed new sculpture, the window and door colors, and samples of the mortar, brick and stone to be used. The Commission limited exterior work to be done by hand and only on days when the temperature remained 45 degrees or higher for the 72-hour period prior to commencement of work.

Lion House, Astor Court, Bronx Zoo, BX, CRB 05-2195, (September 21, 2004). CITYADMIN

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