In a social media-fueled competition, where 40 historic places throughout the five boroughs vied for $3 million dollars in grants, , won first place with 9 percent of the vote, garnering $250,000 to restore its main entrance doors.
Architects Morton Githens and Francis Keally designed the Central Library to resemble an open book. The modernist landmark was constructed between 1912 and 1941 and has become a modernist landmark.
The library plans to replace the original 1937 main entry doors using "historically sensitive materials and methods," but refurbish and reuse the original doors where possible. The overhaul is slated to take place in November and December, according to the Daily News.
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Some of the building's architectural highlights include Art Deco detailing by sculptors Thomas Hudson Jones and C. Paul Jennewein; a 50-foot entry portico set into a concave façade and flanked by pylons decorated with gold-leafed figures depicting the evolution of art and science; and a decorative bronze screen above the triple doors featuring 15 panels depicting notable characters in American writing.
The contest was run by Partners in Preservation, a collaboration between American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Voting took place from late April through May 21 on Facebook and Partners in Preservation’s website.
Coming in second was the nearby (aka Garfield Temple), on Eighth Avenue and Garfield Place in Park Slope, which received 8 percent of the vote and has also been awarded $250,000 to restore its stained glass windows.
The third place winner was the New York Botanical Gardens in the Bronx, which received 7 percent of the vote and has been awarded $250,000 to restore the rock garden.
And the fourth place winner was Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum, also in the Bronx, with 7 percent of the vote and has been awarded $155,000 to restore areas within the museum’s gardens.
Also competing for the grants in Brooklyn were Brown Memorial Baptist Church in Bed-Stuy, the Coney Island B&B Carousell, Erasmus Hall Campus, Gateway National Recreation Area's Brooklyn section, Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center, Tug Pegasus & Waterfront Museum Barge, and the Weeksville Heritage Center.
With $2.1 million left in grants, a Partners in Preservation advisory committee of community and preservation leaders will select sites that will receive the rest of the funds and the recipients will be announced in June.