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MAS Supports Nomination of New LPC Commissioner Frederick Bland

city hall park fountain

It’s not the nomination getting the most press today, but it is important to those who care about New York City’s historic buildings nonetheless. With MAS support, the City Council today approved the nomination of Frederick Bland as the newest member of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC).

Commissioner Bland is the managing partner of Beyer Blinder Belle Architects, one of New York’s most highly regarded preservation architecture firms, and a resident of Brooklyn Heights, New York City’s first historic district. He will fill the seat of long-time Commissioner Jan Hird Pokorny, a pioneering preservation architect who passed away in May at the age of 93. The Council also approved the re-appointments of two veteran LPC Commissioners, Joan Gerner of Queens and Christopher Moore of Brooklyn.

Testimony of the Municipal Art Society Before the City Council’s Committee on Rules, Privileges and Elections on Appointments and Re-Appointments of Landmarks Preservation Commissioners, September 4, 2008
By Melissa Baldock, Kress/RFR Fellow for Historic Preservation and Public Policy

The MAS Preservation Committee supports the appointment of Frederick Bland as a member of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), and the re-appointment of Joan Gerner and Christopher Moore as LPC Commissioners.

We are pleased that the Mayor is officially reappointing two Commissioners who have long served on the LPC, but who are currently serving on expired terms. Both Commissioners Gerner and Moore have served on the LPC for over a decade, and as such are seasoned in the functions and regulations of the Commission. They have long been qualified candidates for the LPC, and their institutional memory is valuable to the incredibly important work of the LPC.

While the experience of existing members like Commissioners Gerner and Moore is critical to the LPC, new commissioners are likewise essential to bring fresh ideas and viewpoints to the Commission. Frederick Bland is a commendable choice for the LPC. As an architect who has worked extensively in New York City’s historic districts, Mr. Bland already has the background knowledge of the LPC’s guidelines and the way its decisions are made. His work as an architect will help him make the balanced decisions that are needed at the LPC.