Jason Sayer reports in the ArchitectsNewspaper about approved modifications to the privately owned public spaces at 701 Lexington Avenue, formerly known as the Citicorp Center. Some have expressed concerns about changes to the Sasaki-designed open air concourse. The spaces fall under the concurrent jurisdictions of the City Planning Commission and the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
An audit by the City Comptroller’s Office reveals that 55% of POPS locations have conditions in violation of applicable legal requirements. Of these 333 POPS locations, 275 have not been inspected by the Department of Buildings in at least four years. Of the 58 inspected, 41 remain out of compliance, yet only 18 violations have been issued to 10 of those locations. The audit results are reported in a document entitled “Audit Report on the City’s Oversight over Privately Owned Public Spaces,” dated April 18, 2017. The report is accessible here. Media coverage of the report may be found in a New York Times article written by Eli Rosenberg.
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Nathan Tempey of the Gothamist documents how security concerns are privatizing POPS and questions whether the balance has been correctly struck.
Michelle Young wonders in Untapped Cities whether the Trump Tower privately owned public spaces will continue to be accessible to the public given the heightened security treatment accorded the building.
Calling it an “oddity,” blogger John Hill reviews the POPS at 115 East 57th Street in anticipation of a walking tour he will be giving this spring.
Robert Rosenberger writes in The Atlantic about the management of Trump Tower’s privately owned public space. Rosenberger notes that Trump Tower is not the only privately owned public space with problems and asks “how seriously someone, in the course of doing business, takes the agreement he or she has made with the public.”
Yoav Gonen at the New York Post, among others, reports on the August 12, 2016 NYC OATH Hearings Division decision upholding a $10,000 civil penalty levied against Trump Tower for its failure to correct an earlier violation with regard to a sales counter illegally occupying the POPS and the failure to install a public bench. The sales counters are gone, the bench is present, and a total penalty of $14,000 hopefully brings this year-long saga to an end.