Landmark Sites of New York City

Suggested by Preservationists for Preservationists

* = Privately owned building, no access to the interior
$ = admission fee
(NPS) = property managed by the National Park Service

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MANHATTAN
BRONX
BROOKLYN
QUEENS
STATEN ISLAND

MANHATTAN

African Burial Ground (NPS), 290 Broadway (at Duane Street) – the site of a burial ground of over 400 Africans in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The site is on the edge of what is believed to have been the largest pre-colonial burial ground of people of African descent.

Apollo Theater ($), 253 West 125th St (bet 7th Ave & 8th Ave) – the celebrated music hall in Central Harlem hosts live performances of national and international renown, as well as their signature Amateur Night. Tours are available but must be reserved in advance. 

Barnard College, Broadway between West 116th and West 120th Streets - this prestigious women’s college was founded in 1889 and has been located on the Morningside Heights campus since 1892.  It has been affiliated with Columbia University since 1900. 

Battery Park, Battery Place at State Street – named after the artillery that the park once housed, Battery Park is at the southern tip of Manhattan and offers spectacular views of New York Harbor.  The park is home to Castle Clinton, the a former fort that was New York’s first immigration station; a war memorial; an AIDS memorial; and The Sphere, a sculpture relocated from the plaza surrounding the World Trade Center. Boats to the Statue of Liberty leave from the northwest end of Battery Park. 

Brooklyn Bridge, walkway entry on Centre St between Chambers & Spruce – erected in 1883, this engineering marvel is one of the most popular tourist attractions in New York City.  The pedestrian path begins on Centre Street between Chambers and Spruce Streets on the Manhattan side, and offers amazing views of Lower Manhattan, New York Harbor, and the bridge itself.  Just be careful not to venture into the bike lane adjacent to the walkway! 

Carnegie Hall ($), 57th Street and 7th Avenue – built in 1891, Carnegie Hall is one of the most famous concert venues in the world. The exterior is undergoing restoration, but the performance hall is open for concerts and tours.    

Castle Clinton (NPS), in Battery Park, near Battery Place at State Street – erected as a fortification for the War of 1812, the sandstone fort was originally on a small artificial island near the southwest tip of Manhattan, but became part of Battery Park after the war when the channel was filled.  It was New York’s first immigration station, and between 1855 and 1890 saw the arrival of over 8 million immigrants.  

Central Park, 59th St to 110th St, between 5th and 8th Aves – one of the most popular sites in New York City beloved by locals and tourists alike, Central Park is an 840 acre oasis on the island of Manhattan.  Designed by Calvert Vaux and Frederick Law Olmstead, the park was completed in 1873 and has been undergoing a careful restoration by the Central Park Conservancy for the past three decades. The park contains numerous historic buildings, monuments and landscape features. The Conservancy offers guided tours as well as downloadable self-guided tours. Want more detail? Register for Field Session 15, Central Park: Preservation Perspectives.

Central Park Zoo ($), Central Park near 64th Street and 5th Avenue – located on the east side of Central Park, the 6.5-acre Central Park Zoo is managed by the Wildlife Conservation Society.  One of the highlights of every New York City childhood is watching the thrice-daily feeding of the sea lions.

Chinatown, centered around Canal St between Elizabeth and Essex Sts – Manhattan’s Chinatown is home to the largest concentration of people of Chinese descent in the Western Hemisphere and is one of the oldest Chinatowns in the world.  In addition to Manhattan’s Chinatown, there are several other vibrant in New York City with large populations of Chinese, notably in Flushing, Queens and in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. 

Chrysler Building*, 405 Lexington Ave (at 44th St) – completed in 1930 and designed in the Art Deco style by William Van Alen, the Chrysler Building is one of New York’s most iconic buildings.  It is privately owned and is not open to the public but may be admired from the exterior. Want to learn more and go behind-the-scenes? You may be interested in Field Session 21 New York's Early Skyscapers in Context: Preserving the Tall Towers of Lower Manhattan from Lower Broadway to City Hall.

Columbia University, Broadway between West 114th and West 120th Sts - founded in 1754, Columbia University is the oldest university in New York State.  The campus was planned by McKim Mead and White in the late nineteenth century and is home to numerous architectural gems. 

Empire State Building ($), 350 5th Ave (bet 33 & 34th Sts) – an Art Deco masterpiece, the Empire State Building was the tallest building in the world from its completion in 1931 until the Twin Towers were built in 1972.  Designed by Shreve, Lamb and Harmon, the building has a recently renovated Art Deco lobby and a public observation deck on the 86th floor with excellent views of the city.  Want to go behind the scenes? Check out the Field Session, FS20 Contemporary Methodologies in Restoration of the Empire State Building.

Flatiron Building*, 175 Fifth Ave (at 23rd St) – the Flatiron Building, completed in 1902, is situated on a unique triangular lot near Madison Square Park.  It was designed by Daniel Burnham and has become on of New York City’s most iconic buildings.  It is privately owned and is not open to the public. However, APT's Field Session11 covers Terra Cotta: The Transformation of the New York Facade and its Preservation.

Fort Tryon Park, Broadway to the Hudson River, between Dyckman and 190th Streets – the site of the Revolutionary War Battle of Fort Washington, the park has exceptional views of the Hudson River and the New Jersey Palisades.  It is home to the Cloisters Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s branch dedicated to medieval art.   

Grand Central Terminal, 42nd Street between Vanderbilt & Lexington Aves – celebrating its centennial this year, Grand Central Terminal is one of the most famous train stations in the world.  Designed by Reed and Stern, and Warren and Wetmore, the station has a cavernous main concourse, numerous shops, a food market, takeout food service in the lower concourse, and numerous passageways.  The Oyster Bar is a popular attraction (and the site for the APT NYC 2013 Chapters Mixer), as is the nearby Whisper Wall which owes its existence to the unique acoustical properties of its Guastavino vaulted ceiling. Tours of the station are offered at 12:30pm daily by the Municipal Arts Society; audio self-guided tours may also be rented in the station.  One of the Conference workshops gives participants the opportunity to construct a variety of simple “Guastavino” vaults.

Grant’s Tomb (NPS), West 122nd Street and Riverside Drive – managed by the National Park Service, Grant’s Tomb is a monument to the 18th President of the United States, Ulysses S. Grant.  The mausoleum also contains the remains of Julia Grant and was completed in 1897. It is not open to the public.

High Line, Gansevoort St to 30th St between 10th & 11th Aves – one of New York City’s newest parks, the High Line is located on a former elevated rail line on the far West Side of Manhattan.  The first two phases of the park was completed in 2009 and 2011, respectively; the third phase, from 30th to 34th Street, will be completed in the next couple of years. 

Hudson River Park, West Side Highway between Battery Park and West 59th Street – this 5-mile waterfront park extends from the Battery to the northern end of Midtown.  Each portion of the park is unique, with quiet waterfront walks, playgrounds and a marina in Battery Park City; sand volleyball courts, a kayak and canoe launch, tennis courts and a skate park in the Tribeca and West Village portion of the park, and sporting facilities and sunbathing piers in the Chelsea portion of the park.

Irish Hunger Memorial, Vesey Street (at North End Avenue) – located in Hudson River Park, this memorial to the Great Irish Famine has stones, soil and vegetation native to Ireland, as well as a partially rebuilt nineteenth century stone cottage from County Mayo. 

Lincoln Center, Columbus Ave (bet 62nd & 64th Sts) – the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts is a complex of theaters, performance venues, a performing-arts branch of the New York Public Library, the Julliard School, and a public plaza. The complex includes Alice Tully Hall and the Julliard School (designed by Pietro Belluschi), Avery Fisher Hall (Max Abramovitz), the New York State Theater (Philip Johnson), the Vivian Beaumont Theater (Eero Saarinen), and the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts (Gordon Bunshaft). The plaza, Alice Tully Hall and the Julliard School were recently renovated by Diller Scofidio + Renfro. Tours are available from the David Rubenstein Atrium on Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets. You may also be interested in reserving your spot for APT's Field Session 30, Preservation in the Plaza: Art and Public Spaces.

Little Red Lighthouse (HHT), Fort Washington Park, 178th Street at the Hudson River – a small lighthouse erected in 1921 and in use until 1947, the Little Red Lighthouse was featured in the 1942 children’s book The Little Red Lighthouse and the Great Gray Bridge, by Hildegarde Swift. It is only open to the public on the second Saturday of each month from June until October.

New York Public Library, 455 Fifth Avenue (at 42nd St) - designed by Carrère and Hastings, the main branch of the New York Public Library system was completed in 1911.  This research library has a majestic reading room, a recently restored map room, and an ornate lobby.  The exterior was also recently restored.  The APT Tribute will be held in this beautiful space.

New York University, centered around Washington Square Park - NYU was founded in 1831 and was one of the first non-denominational universities in New York City.  Its campus is centered around Washington Square Park in the heart of Greenwich Village.  There are numerous important buildings on campus, including the Brown Building, the site of the horrific Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in 1911. 

Radio City Music Hall ($), 1260 Sixth Ave (at 50th St) - this 1932 Art Deco music hall was once the host of variety acts and films.  Restored in the late 1990s, Radio City hosts numerous concerts, performances, film premiers, the annual Christmas Spectacular, the NFL Draft, and the Tony Awards. Tours are available daily. 

Riverside Park, Riverside Drive to the Hudson River, between West 59th and 125th Sts - designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, this four-mile-long park is located on the slope between Riverside Drive and the Hudson River.  It is home to several monuments, playing fields, allées, formal gardens, and a boat marina. 

Rockefeller Center, 48th to 51st Streets (bet 5th & 6th Aves) - a complex of nineteen buildings designed by Raymond Hood and erected between 1930 and 1939, Rockefeller Center was developed by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. as an urban renewal project.  The complex includes the GE building (30 Rockefeller Plaza), the Top of the Rock observation deck, Radio City Music Hall, a sunken lower plaza complete with skating rink, and numerous important Art Deco sculptures, friezes and murals.  Daily tours are available at the Top of the Rock ticket office. You may also be interested in reserving your spot for APT's Field Session 30, Preservation in the Plaza: Art and Public Spaces.

Roosevelt Island, East River between the Upper East Side and Astoria, Queens – formerly called Blackwell’s Island and later Welfare Island, Roosevelt Island was the site of the city’s Smallpox Hospital designed by James Renwick, Jr. The hospital now lies in ruins at the south side of the island adjacent to Louis Kahn’s recently completed FDR Four Freedoms monument and park. Most of the northern side of the island consists of apartment buildings erected between 1970 and 2006. The island is reached by the F subway or the Roosevelt Island Tram.

St Patrick’s Cathedral, 14 East 51st St (bet 5th & Madison Aves) – currently undergoing an extensive restoration, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is the seat of the Catholic archdiocese of New York.  It was designed by James Renwick, Jr. and was completed in 1878. Interested in sacred, urban spaces? Check out the full-day Field Session, FS04 Restoring Urban Churches in Distress or the half-day session offered twice, Stained Glass Restoration in New York.

South Street Seaport, 19 Fulton St (at Front St) – this former harbor district is home to the greatest concentration of restored early nineteenth-century commercial buildings in New York City.  Many of the seaport buildings were restored in the 1980s and 90s. However, the seaport was badly damaged by Hurricane Sandy, the Seaport is undergoing further restoration work. Field Session 12, The South Street Seaport: Preserving Two Centuries of Building Technology, will give you a behind-the-scenes look.

Staten Island Ferry, Whitehall Ferry Terminal, 4 South Street – this ferry between lower Manhattan and St. George, Staten Island departs every 30 minutes daily (every 15 minutes during rush hour) and offers the best bargain in New York City – it’s free! Each trip across New York Harbor takes about 25 minutes.

Statue of Liberty ($), Ferry from Battery Park – the symbol of America, the Statue of Liberty has overlooked New York Harbor since it’s inauguration in 1886.  It was restored between 1984 and 1986, and closed between 2011 and 2012 for safety upgrades.  It reopened in time for Hurricane Sandy to pummel the dock and flood portions of the island in October 2012; it will once again reopen in July 2013.  It is reachable by Statue Cruises boats from Battery Park.  The advanced purchase of tickets is recommended, as the Statue is one of the most popular tourist spots in the nation.

Times Square, Broadway between 42nd & 47th Sts – formerly Longacre Square, and known as the Great White Way and the Crossroads of the World, Times Square is the theater district of New York City and the center of activity for APT NYC 2013.  Named after the New York Times, whose headquarters was formerly on the square, its buildings are host to exuberant light displays and signage. It is currently undergoing a transformation into a pedestrian plaza designed by Snøhetta. You can purchase discounted day-of theater tickets at the TKTS booth beneath the red steps.

Top of the Rock ($), 30 Rockefeller Plaza – located at the top of the GE Building (30 Rockefeller Plaza), the Top of the Rock observation deck opened in 2005 after being closed to the public for twenty years. It is heralded as the best panoramic view of New York City because its view includes the Empire State Building.  Timed tickets are available for purchase online or at the box office. 

Trinity Church and Burial Ground, 74 Trinity Place (at Wall Street) - the third church on this site, Trinity Church is a Gothic Revival masterpiece designed by Richard Upjohn and completed in 1846.  Its exterior is currently being restored.  The burial ground outside the church has many fine examples of Colonial and early American headstones. 

United Nations Headquarters ($), First Ave (at 46th St) - a complex of buildings erected between 1949 and 1961, the United Nations Headquarters was designed by Oscar Niemeyer, Le Courbusier and Wallace K. Harrison on behalf of an international committee of architects and planners.  Harrison & Abramovitz designed the Dag Hammarskjöld Library, which was added to the complex in 1961. The buildings have been undergoing restoration for several years. Tours are available at the Visitors Center. For a behind-the-scenes Field Session, register for FS23 The United Nations Capital Preservation Master Plan.

Washington Square Park, at the base of Fifth Avenue between Washington Square West and University Place - located in the heart of Greenwich Village, Washington Square Park is beloved by residents and tourists alike.  It is dominated by the Washington Square Arch, designed by McKim Mead and White, and a central circular fountain.  The park was once a potter’s field and German cemetery, but was recently renovated. 

World Trade Center Site Memorial ($), 120 Liberty Street (bet Greenwich St & Trinity Place) - the World Trade Center Site 9/11 Memorial is free but timed tickets must be reserved in advance, either online or in person.  Same day tickets are limited and are first-come, first-serve.  The National September 11th Memorial Museum is not yet completed. 
 
BRONX

Fordham University, Fordham Road between Webster Ave and Southern Blvd – this Jesuit university was founded in 1841 though it was not named Fordham until 1907. Its campus, on Rose Hill, is one of the largest privately owned green spaces in New York City and is characterized by Collegiate Gothic buildings and expansive lawns.  

Fort Schuyler at SUNY Maritime*, 6 Pennyfield Avenue – this massive stone fort was erected in 1833 at Throgs Neck to protect the entrance from Long Island Sound into the East River.  It is currently used as administrative offices and classrooms for SUNY Maritime College.  Only a portion of the fort – the Maritime Museum – is open to the public.  

Gaelic Park – Hurling and Gaelic Football, West 240th Street at Broadway – since 1926, Gaelic Park has hosted numerous Gaelic sporting events, including regular hurling and Gaelic football matches.  The season runs from April to October. The stadium is now owned by Manhattan College but is regularly used on weekends by the Gaelic Athletic Association of Greater New York.

Yankee Stadium ($), River Road at 161st Street – no longer the House that Ruth built, this stadium opened in 2009.  Fortunately for fans, the new stadium includes Monument Park honoring past Yankee greats.  Tours are available daily between 12pm and 1:40pm, and can be purchased online or at the stadium.

Woodlawn Cemetery, between Webster and Jerome Aves at 233rd Street – a 400 acre cemetery dating from 1863, Woodlawn is one of the great garden cemeteries in the United States.  It is home to numerous mausoleums designed by the leading architects of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. You may also be interested in Field Session 14, Restoring Significant Mausolea - Involving Descendants in the Care and Conservation of Family Tombs.

BROOKLYN

Brooklyn Academy of Music ($), 30 Lafayette Ave (bet Ashland Pl & St. Felix St) – the oldest performing arts center in the United States, BAM has been in its present location since 1908.  BAM hosts numerous concerts, dance performances, plays and film screenings, as well as literary talks and other cultural events.

Brooklyn Bridge, walkway entry at Boerum Place and Tillary Street or in underpass at Cadman Plaza West – for those who prefer to take the subway to Brooklyn and walk to Manhattan, the pedestrian path on the Brooklyn side of the bridge begins at the intersection of Boerum Place and Tillary Street.  For a nicer start to your walk, enter the walkway from the steps in the Cadman Plaza East underpass of the Brooklyn Bridge. As with the Manhattan side, be careful not to venture into the bike lane adjacent to the walkway! 

Brooklyn Bridge Park, the East River between Old Fulton Street and Atlantic Avenue – one of New York City’s newest parks, Brooklyn Bridge Park is being constructed on the site of former industrial piers.  The park offers some of the best views of New York City and New York Harbor, particularly at the Granite Prospect or the Harbor View Lawn.  Piers 5 and 6 closer to Atlantic Avenue have athletic fields, playgrounds and sand volleyball courts, while Pier 1, near the Brooklyn Bridge, has open spaces, a salt marsh and excellent concession stands.  Ferry service from Pier 1 provides access to Wall Street or to parts north along the East River.   Coney Island

Brooklyn Heights Promenade, above the Brooklyn Queens Expressway between Remsen and Cranberry Sts – this marvel of modern engineering – a triple cantilever – the Brooklyn Heights Promenade offers some of the best views of Lower Manhattan and New York Harbor.  Grab some takeout from one of the restaurants on Montague Street and admire the view.

Brooklyn Navy Yard ($), 63 Flushing Avenue (near N. Oxford St.) - an active ship-building or ship-repair center between the 1790s and 1966, the Brooklyn Navy Yard is now an urban industrial center.  The huge complex includes warehouses, former machine shops, the Greek Revival hospital building, and residential structures built in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  Tours are provided by the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center in Building 92, which also houses a small museum.

Green-wood Cemetery, 500 25th Street (at Fifth Ave) - founded in 1838, Green-wood Cemetery is on nearly 500 acres of rolling hills that make up the highest point in Brooklyn.  The cemetery was inspired by Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, MA and is the final resting place of many prominent New Yorkers.  Like Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, Green-wood has numerous mausoleums designed by famous architects from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  Tours are offered by the Green-wood Cemetery Historic Fund.

Prospect Park, southeast of Grand Army Plaza (bet. Flatbush Ave, Ocean Ave, Parkside Ave and Prospect Park West) - despite its proximity to Central Park, Prospect Park is believed by many to be Vaux and Olmstead’s masterpiece.  This nearly 600-acre urban oasis has been undergoing a careful restoration by the Prospect Park Alliance.

QUEENS

Citi Field (Mets stadium) ($), 123-01 Roosevelt Ave (at 126th St.) - completed in 2009, Citi Field is home to the New York Mets.  Stadium tours may be purchased online or at the box office.

Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, 11101 Corona Ave (bet the Grand Central Expressway and the Van Wyck Expressway) - this park, which is the fourth largest in New York City, was created as the site for the 1939 World’s Fair.  It also hosted the 1964 World’s Fair.  The park is laid out in fairground’s original plan and a few buildings from each fair remain.  The park is also home to the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center (home of the US Open), as well as several museums and playing fields.  For a behind-the-scenes look, take part in Field Session13, Preserving the Ephemeral: Investigating World's Fair Remnants at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.

Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge (NPS), Broad Channel - part of the Gateway National Recreation Area, the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge is one of the largest bird sanctuaries in the northeastern United States. It also contains a significant population of reptiles, small mammals and amphibians.  Rangers regularly lead hikes and bird-watching tours.
 
STATEN ISLAND

Fort Wadsworth (NPS), northeast Staten Island beneath Verrazano-Narrows Bridge - Fort Wadsworth has guarded the entrance to New York Harbor for over two centuries.  The fort and the surrounding park land, part of Gateway National Recreation Area, offer specatcular views of New York Harbor.  The park is free and open to the public Wednesdays through Sundays.

Walker Park – Cricket Matches, Bard Ave (between Delafield Pl and Livingston Ct) - this public park is home to the Staten Island Cricket Club, founded in 1872.  The SICC is the oldest continually active cricket club in the United States. The season runs from April until October; matches are held at the park most weekend days. 


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