The magnificent Cathedral of St. John the Divine and its Cathedral Close are New York City’s newest landmarks. The Landmarks Preservation Commission voted unanimously on Tuesday to bestow the same protections on the site that have been afforded to many other religious institutions throughout the city.
One of the world’s largest cathedrals was not already a New York City landmark for lack of support by the LPC; a 2002 decision to designate the 120-year-old unfinished cathedral was overturned by the City Council in a greater attempt to preserve the entire Cathedral Close. That effort culminated on Tuesday, but not before opening the door to new development on the site, hence the two rental towers within kissing distance of the cathedral’s northern exposure. The rental towers, opportunistically named Enclave at the Cathedral, were excluded from the site’s designation.
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