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NEW YORK ARCHITECTURAL TERRA COTTA WORKS – HISTORIC PRESERVATION

NEW YORK ARCHITECTURAL TERRA
COTTA WORKS – HISTORIC PRESERVATION

January 11, 2022
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Building Restorations

NEW YORK ARCHITECTURAL TERRA
COTTA WORKS – HISTORIC PRESERVATION

Project Type: Building Restoration
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01

Intro

The New York Architectural Terra Cotta Works housed its corporate offices within what we now call “The Terra Cotta Building”.  Established in 1886, the company was the only major architectural terra cotta manufacturer in New York City and, when completed, its facilities were the largest in the country for architectural terra cotta. The company set up its manufacturing operations on the Long Island City waterfront in 1886 and in 1892 this office building was constructed.  The company supplied terra-cotta for Carnegie Hall and the Ansonia Hotel, among others. The company went out of business in the 1930s, and the building became vacant. It was eventually bought in 1965 by Citibank and then purchased by Silvercup Studios. It was landmarked in 1982.

Silvercup approached Magnum Opus Architecture to conduct an exterior historic preservation/restoration to the building and alter the existing interior to create a cathedraled ceiling and new two-story atrium at the center of the building.   The existing windows were far beyond restoration so new historically correct windows were selected.    Probes were created in the exterior walls to confirm how the building was constructed (hidden “queens headers” & mass masonry). Existing mortar was sampled to confirm the make up of the lime putty mortar which was them manufactured to the same specifications for this project. 

02

Project Scope:

  • Masonry Replacement
  • Lintel Replacement
  • Masonry Re pointing
  • Windows Replacement
  • Decorative Brickwork Restoration
  • Terracotta Replacement (custom casts were created)
  • New Structural rings and ties to create the catherdraled ceiling
  • New steel stricture to create the two story high space
  • Terra Cotta roof tile replacement & new hidden Yankee Gutter installation
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