The Javits Center is Dead, Long Live the Javits Center

The good news is that the $390 million renovation of the Javits Center on the west side of Manhattan is coming along well and on target to be completed in 2014. The bad news is it that it will likely be torn down shortly thereafter.
January 23, 2012, 2pm PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Robin Pogrebin reports on Governor Cuomo's recently announced plans to demolish the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center and replace it with a larger center to be built at the Aqueduct racetrack in Jamaica, Queens, with $4 billion from Genting, a Malaysian gambling company. Pogrebin speaks with Bruce Fowle, architect of the on-going renovation to the original Javits, and others involved with the project.

"The waste of creative energy, money and material that would result in its being torn down is painful to think about," Mr. Fowle said during a walk through the center last week. "When you're worrying about every detail - trying to do the best you can to make something that represents the city - it's like having the rug pulled out from under you."

Some would not be as disappointed by Mr. Fowle by the unusual turn of events. "It's just such an awful building that the only reason to keep it would be as a monument to stupidity," said Mark Wigley, the dean of Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, about the original Javits.

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Published on Sunday, January 22, 2012 in The New York Times
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