Some of the biggest names in the Long Island City arts community declared war on developers who illegally altered the decorative facade on the Elks Lodge building on 44th Drive Tuesday, one week after neighborhood residents renewed efforts to have the property landmarked.
Artists in LIC don't give a flying rat's ass about preservation, only ice cream money from Jimmy Van Bramer.
“Maybe this building is a line in the sand about how we go about further development here,” Mazda said. “We’ve had a relationship with other developers like Rockrose and TF Cornerstone, who go about things by the rules. Not these Johnny-come-latelies.”
City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside), who organized the rally of artists outside the Elks Lodge Wednesday afternoon, was furious. Last week he wrote to the Landmarks Preservation Commission, urging them to designate the building as a historical landmark.
Time and again, we have seen electeds pretend to care about saving something, only to later find out that they were in cahoots with the developer. But holding a rally means you can shrug your shoulders and say you tried when the building comes down.
The councilman said he would draft two pieces of legislation to discourage developers from illegally altering structures. The first piece would impose significant fines and penalties to any landowner that intentionally alters the facade or any part of a building that is in the process of being landmarked and the second piece would authorize the city to increase the fines if a developer does illegal construction without a permit.
Which will have absolutely no teeth, because sending a letter to LPC doesn't mean the building is "in the process of being landmarked".
How many preservation groups were invited to this rally?