Neha Patil (Editor)

United States Post Office–Bronx Central Annex

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Built  1935
Opened  1935
Added to NRHP  6 May 1980
NRHP Reference #  80002584
Area  6,100 m²
United States Post Office–Bronx Central Annex httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsthu
Location  558 Grand Concourse, Bronx, New York 10451
Architect  Ellett, Thomas Harlan; Shahn, Ben
Designated NYCL  September 14, 1976 December 17, 2013
Similar  Grand Island United St, US Post Office and Courthouse‑Billings, Old Attleboro Post Office, Doe Branch Post Office

United States Post Office–Bronx Central Annex is a historic post office building located at the Bronx, New York, United States. The four-story structure was built from 1935 to 1937, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and as a New York City Landmark. Additional landmark status was granted to the interior, which includes a notable series of New Deal-era murals in fresco created in 1939 by Ben Shahn and Bernarda Bryson Shahn for the Treasury Department Art Project's Section of Fine Arts. The building was sold in 2014 and is being transformed into retail, postal service, office and restaurant space.

Contents

Building

Bronx General Post Office is a historic post office building located at the Bronx, New York, United States. It was built from 1935 to 1937, and designed by consulting architect Thomas Harlan Ellett for the Office of the Supervising Architect. Constructed of smooth gray brick and is surrounded by a granite terrace, the building features graceful window openings set within marble arches.

On the terrace are two sculptures dating to 1936: The Letter by Henry Kreis and Noah by Charles Rudy.

The interior features 13 mural panels in fresco inspired by the words of Walt Whitman. They were executed by Ben Shahn and his wife Bernarda Bryson Shahn and completed in August 1939.

The building was listed as a New York City Landmark on September 14, 1976, and on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

Sale

In January 2013 the U.S. Postal Service announced that it was considering selling the Bronx General Post Office as part of its national reevaluation of facilities. Noting that the building comprises 175,000 square feet of interior space, the Postal Service stated that most of the operations once performed there had been relocated. The sale of some 200 buildings was being considered in light of declining mail volume and the growth of online services. "There are lots of quite significant post office buildings that are threatened because the Postal Service itself is threatened", said National Building Museum curator G. Martin Moeller Jr. The grand Bronx property was one of those most architecturally distinguished, and its interior was granted landmark status December 17, 2013, to preserve Shahn's mural series, Resources of America. Despite protests from preservationists and the community, plans for the sale went forward.

The building was purchased by Manhattan marketplace developer YoungWoo & Associates in September 2014 for $19 million. In February 2015 the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved the redevelopment of the property with retail space and postal services on the ground and main floors, office space on the upper two floors, and a restaurant on the roof. The plan included restoration of the exterior, the 13 murals, and the lobby which had been remodeled over the years.

Gallery

Resources of America is a series of 13 murals celebrating American industry and the dignity of labor, inspired by the words of Walt Whitman.

References

United States Post Office–Bronx Central Annex Wikipedia


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