January 6, 2010
Neighbors, preservationists and even the perpetrators themselves have weighed in on the Equinox gym advertecture controversy, but now, elevating the squabble to point of absurdity (which is exactly where we like it), politicians are now getting involved. State Senator Tom Duane has penned a letter to Equinox's CEO slamming the company for wrapping its building at 97 Greenwich Avenue in the Village with probably illegal signage. With the St. Vincent's Hospital redevelopment battle slowly entering the lengthy and boring land-use phase, the Equinox billboards have clearly become Greenwich Village's cause célèbre. Duane's letter to Equinox CEO Harvey Spevak:
As an elected official representing Greenwich Village, I am outraged that Equinox has erected multistory signage which covers much of the Equinox facility located at 97 Greenwich Avenue, within the Greenwich Village Historic District. I appeal to you as the Chief Executive Officer of Equinox to remove this contextually inappropriate and unsightly advertising, which has seriously compromised the character of our neighborhood.
My office (along with several community organizations and residents) has contacted both the NYC Department of Buildings (DOB) and the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) regarding the legality of these commercial building wrappers. Regardless of DOB or LPC’s findings, I appeal to you and am hopeful that in the interests of neighborhood preservation and with respect for your commercial and residential neighbors, you will choose to remove this ill-conceived building facade.
I look forward to your swift response.
Now all we need is a Tim Robbins comment and we've pretty much covered all angles.