Blowhard, Esq. writes:
Submitted for your consideration, 20th century architectural history in miniature, as illustrated by three buildings. Located in Inwood neighborhood of upper Manhattan, each is located right next to the other. Here’s a map in the order we’ll be looking at them:
Many of the residential buildings in Inwood date from the 20s and 30s and are built in the Art Deco and Tudor Revival styles.
Charming and beautiful, no? Across the street is…this. It’s Lawrence A. Wien Stadium, where the Columbia football team
loses plays. The field is named after Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots and Columbia alum. Built in 1982 in the Brutalist style, it resembles a prison guard tower.
Finally, just east of the stadium is the Campbell Sports Complex, designed by Columbia professor Steve Holl who took his inspiration from football diagrams. It looks like a neurotic robot insect to me.
Inwood neighbors say they understand the problem but contend the design, by the acclaimed architect Steven Holl, a Columbia professor, is out of character with the sedate Art Deco and Tudor-style apartment buildings to the south. The angular Holl building would be set partly on stilts and accented by terraces and stepped ramps that echo urban fire escapes.
“It does not relate well to the community,” said Gail Addiss, 61, an architect who lives opposite Baker Field. “It’s similar to Frank Gehry architecture — large metal things whose glare is going to cause more brightness to reflect into people’s windows.”
Which style do you prefer?
- A short history of Columbia University’s involvement in Inwood.