Vanderbilt Mansion Cornelius Vanderbilt II’s Mansion at 742-748 Fifth Avenue (between 57th and 58th Streets). Photo via Library of Congress.

Recently, we rounded up New York City’s architectural superlatives, ranging from narrowest building to smallest plot of land. In that mix was the shortest lived buildings in the city. While most of us see the city as ever-changing, it may surprise you to discover just how short-lived some buildings were.

Mount Vernon Replica in Prospect Park (2 Years)

Replica of Mt Vernon-Prospect Park-Brooklyn-1932-Bicentennial George Washington Birthday-Robert Moses-NYCThe Replica of Mount Vernon in Prospect Park. Image from Brooklyn Historical Society via Prospect Park Alliance

In 1932, Robert Moses had a replica of Mount Vernon built in Prospect Park to to mark the 200th anniversary of George Washington’s birth. The building, constructed by Sears, Roebuck & Company (who also delivered another replica to the Exposition Coloniale Internationale in Paris in 1931) and designed by architect Charles K. Bryant, lasted lasted a mere two years before being torn down. The house was located at the base of Lookout Hill on the Peninsula of the Lake.

This fun fact and more in the book Prospect Park: Olmstead & Vaux’s Brooklyn Masterpiece.

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One thought on “9 of NYC’s Shortest-Lived Buildings: Grand Central Station, Crystal Palace, Folk Art Museum

  1. These beautiful buildings brought tears to my eyes. People go to Europe to buy ancient crumbling homes to restore, and in this country if its oider than 30 years it must be torn down for a “modern” edition! When I think of the talented people who made these facades which in fact is “Art” and thought they were going to be remembered it is sad! I would much rather see one of these buildings than all the boring glass towers in this world.

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