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Building Conservation Associates

Queens Public Library at Jackson Heights

Location: Queens, New York 
Year Built: 1954 
Original Architect: Simeon Heller 

The Jackson Heights Library branch of the Queens Public Library is a 1953 International-style building located at 35-51 81st Street in Jackson Heights, Queens, designed by architect Simeon Heller. As part of the Jackson Heights Historic District, the library is a designated New York City Landmark, and all exterior rehabilitative work on the building is subject to review by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. The library is also a contributing resource in the Jackson Heights Historic District listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The project involved a complete renovation of the building, and design and construction of a new addition to bring the library to 21st century standards and provide space for contemporary program needs. BCA was the historic preservation consultant, overseeing the exterior restoration design and the LPC approval. To help the design team identify historic preservation considerations and opportunities for the project, BCA conducted research into the history of the building and its evolution over time, as well as its existing conditions, to assess the significance of the extant exterior historic fabric. BCA’s assessment did not include the building interior. BCA conducted a hands-on conditions assessment of the historic exterior fabric and made treatment recommendations and prepared construction documents for the restoration scope, including masonry repairs. BCA also performed preservation design review of the proposed new addition.