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45 Rockefeller Plaza: Application for a Certificate of Appropriateness to update lighting scheme at 45 Rockefeller Plaza lobby and mezzanine

At the regularly scheduled monthly Community Board Five meeting on Thursday, June 11, 2020, the following resolution passed with a vote of 43 in favor; 0 opposed; 1 abstaining:

WHEREAS, 45 Rockefeller Plaza is seeking a Certificate of Appropriateness for an updating lighting scheme in the designated lobby; and

WHEREAS, 45 Rockefeller Plaza, also known as The International Building, is one of 19 buildings that occupy 22 acres of the larger Rockefeller Center built during the Great Depression by John D. Rockefeller Jr.; and

WHEREAS, 45 Rockefeller Plaza is a 512-foot, 41-story building located on the west side of Fifth Avenue between West 50th and 51st Streets and was designated a NYC Landmark in 1985; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is proposing a lighting scheme to restore the interior of the landmark to a look-and-feel resembling historical photographs (1935; Architectural Forum); and

WHEREAS, Much of the existing lighting is outdated and does not provide optimal illumination of the significant architectural features and/or the lighting creates extreme hotspots; and

WHEREAS, Proposed alterations include:

  1. Illuminating the windows above the entrance on Fifth Avenue as well as adding mirrors to the alcove similar in style to a recent renovation of the Rainbow Room; and
  2. Relighting the entrances and ventilation grilles also at the Fifth Avenue entrance; and
  3. Creating a seating area between the elevator banks in the East Lobby, Ground Floor which includes the removal of non-historic cabinet doors and cabinet partitions; and
  4. Relighting the art work in the North & South Niches; and
  5. Refinishing and removing wax build up on floor and terrazzo to create a more historic and less reflective surface; and
  6. The installation of necessary and discrete security cameras; and

WHEREAS, The applicant is taking great care to propose modifications that are minimally invasive and that enhance and do not detract from the architectural splendor of 45 Rockefeller Plaza as it relates to Rockefeller Center; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval for modifications to 45 Rockefeller Plaza that include relighting the ground lobby and mezzanine floor. 

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