Letter from the HRC Chair, September 2018


Michael-01-Small.jpgGreetings from the Historic Resources Committee:

New York City provided a great urban venue for the 2018 AIA Convention on Architecture. The Historic Resources Committee hopes you all had a chance to enjoy New York City and its deep history. The city was busy and architects were everywhere exploring buildings–old, new and under construction. The Javits Center was the main headquarters with additional session venues at the New York Hilton Midtown and The New School –we were treated to seeing the city in many ways. We were also treated to keynote events at the famous Radio City Music Hall and the Fellows Investiture ceremony in the newly restored St Patrick’s Cathedral.

For us interested in historic and existing buildings–there were many tour opportunities including Philip Johnson’s Glass House, the High Line, TWA Flight Center, Greenwich Village, historic GreenWood Cemetery, South Street Seaport, Bronx Zoo, and St Patrick’s Cathedral. There were also sessions looking at restoring the United Nations Center façade, Cast Iron Architecture, Art Deco on the Upper West Side, restoring the Waldorf Astoria, the Met Breuer, the George Washington Bridge, and a session on 3D Photogrammetry to documents existing buildings.

HRC was pleased to have been welcomed to the Historic National Arts Center for our Luncheon. The National Arts Club is located in the historic 1845 Samuel J. Tilden mansion, designed by Calvert Vaux with resplendent Tiffany glass and skylights. HRC thanks the National Arts Club for their generosity and excellent lunch.

We were fortunate to have as our luncheon speaker, architectural historian Francis Morrone–a renowned expert on the history of New York City. He is the author of 11 books and the 2016 recipient of the Arthur Ross Award of the Institute of Classical Architecture and Art. We were greatly entertained by his lecture entitled “When Gentrification came to New York City” and thank him for his willingness to speak at our HRC Luncheon.

We hope you will join us for the 2019 Colloquium, at Taliesin West in Scottsdale, February 8-9, 2019. The topic is Historic Structure Reports. We are planning a comprehensive look at the origin, use, and future of the HSR. We have invited a wide variety of distinguished speakers to discuss various aspects of the HSR and are planning to end with a panel discussion–which we hope to be lively and provide the Historic Resources Committee with some action items.

HRC always welcomes people interested in working on our subcommittees including communication and publications, development, education and programs, HABS coordinating committee, and historic sites advocacy. For more information on how you can become involved, email hrc@aia.org.

Continue to work on saving and reusing historic and existing buildings–they are the carriers of our past and the incubators of our future!

Michael Bjornberg, FAIA | 2018 Chair, AIA Historic Resources Committee