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TWA Flight Center at JFK Airport, an America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places success story

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is accepting nominations for its annual list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places until March 2nd. The list has been an annual initiative for nearly 30 years now, shining a spotlight on threatened historic places and galvanizing local support for their preservation. Since the list began in 1988, just three percent of featured sites have been lost. In New York City, the TWA Flight Center was highlighted as one of the 24 most inspiring preservation stories in the 24 years of the 11 Most Endangered list. Last year’s list included The Palisades in New Jersey, while familiar spots in New York City like the abandoned Ellis Island hospitals, Governors Island, the demolished Worldport Terminal at JFK Airport, the home of John Coltrane, and more have appeared on the list before.

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laguardia-demolition-airport-terminal-hanger-new-york-city-darkcyanide-2Photos by Dark Cyanide for Untapped Cities

It’s easy to hate on LaGuardia Airport, even the politicians do it. Just last year, Vice President Joe Biden compared it to an airport that would be found in a “third world country,” nearly identical to what Donald Trump said of it in 2011: “You go to LaGuardia Airport, it’s like a Third World airport.” The executive director of the Port Authority agreed with Biden, and Governor Mario Cuomo called the airport a “disgrace.” Well, for the haters, change is finally coming. The demolition of Hangars 2 and 4, between the Central Terminal Building and the Delta/US Airways terminal is mid-demolition. There hasn’t been any news about it, probably because nobody cares.

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abandoned-hudson-river-hospital-pougkeepsie-8

Photo by Dark.Cyanide

The Hudson River State Hospital, located outside of Poughkeepsie, was once a psychiatric hospital run by New York state. Although it is a National Historic Landmark, it’s been declining as a ruin since the early 2000s. As part of the treatment philosophy of the time, some of the country’s best architects were involved in the design of the hospital, including Calvert Vaux and Frederick Law Olmstead, the duo who created Central Park and did the grounds here. The land itself was once owned by the Roosevelt family. We recently took a visit to explore and document the state of the hospital.

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chrysler-building-skyscrapers-new-york-city-skyline-roof-darkcyanidePhoto by Dark Cyanide

The Chrysler Building is one of the most beloved of New York City’s skyscrapers, an architectural manifestation of both the Art Deco era and the automobile age. Famous as it may be, the Chrysler Building holds many fascinating secrets, compounded by the fact that it is difficult to visit and doesn’t offer tours, unlike the Woolworth Building and the Empire State Building. Here are 10 lesser known facts about the Chrysler Building, many derived from an Q&A with David Stravitz, the author of The Chrysler Building: Creating a New York Icon Day by Day with The New York Times in 2009.

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Brooklyn Bridge Park-Salt Marsh_Construction_Credit Julienne SchaerBrooklyn Bridge Park Salt March before, photo by Julienne Schaer

With all the activity along Brooklyn Bridge Park these days, it can be hard for visitors (and even some newer residents) to recall what the New York City waterfront looked like even just a decade ago. After all, it was only in 2011 that the city’s comprehensive waterfront plan, Vision: 2020 was passed. But this document was a culmination of various waterfront redevelopment projects already in place, some from the mid 1980s, a manifestation of both grassroots and governmental push to rethink New York City’s “last borough.”

March 10th, 2015 will mark the 5th anniversary of the popular Brooklyn Bridge Park and the organization has shared with Untapped Cities before and after photographs of the piers and greenway, a reminder of how the changes that have come to this area of Brooklyn. The captions are written by Maureen Lynch, Communications Manager for Brooklyn Bridge Park.

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George Washington Bridge-Steel Tower Lights-President's Day-NYC-005Photo by Dark Cyanide

While it is fairly well-known that the exposed steel towers of the George Washington Bridge were not part of the original Beaux-Arts design (check out the pink granite exterior it was supposed to have), what’s not commonly known is that they get lit up, unannounced, for holidays a few times a year. A smaller-scale program like that on the Empire State Building. Yesterday, the towers were lit for President’s Day and the photographer Dark Cyanide shared us these shots he took (while almost floating away on the bed of ice).

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