G R A M E R C Y   N E I G H B O R H O O D   A S S O C I A T E S ,   I N C .

P.O. Box 678 - Madison Square Garden - New York, NY 10159

P R E F A C E   *  I N T R O D U C T I O N  *  O B J E C T I V E S

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The Gramercy Park District was designated in the infancy of the Landmarks Preservation Commission, almost 30 years ago, and has since often been cited as a model of its kind. For over a hundred and fifty years the little park has served as the heart of what is truly a neighborhood, much cherished by the residents of its rowhouses and apartment houses and by the occupants of commercial buildings as well. Though the park cannot be expanded, the historic district assuredly can be and ought to be, reinforcing within its new boundaries that sense of "belonging" which is indispensable to urban preservation. We have learned much over the years about the economic value of designating whole districts rather than individual structures; we have learned still more about the degree to which living in a historic district awakens a shared interest in the history of the area and in the maintenance of its appearance and amenities. Given that the initial designation of the district reflected the caution of a commission not yet certain of how far it might go, the expansion of the historic district that is being proposed by the Gramercy Neighborhood Associates, Inc., strikes me as modest. The city has everything to gain by its adoption.

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