Edward Durrell Stone House
|location||New York, New York|
In a staid district of late-nineteenth-century town houses on New York City's Upper East Side, the romantically lacy, stark-white concrete grille in front of the Edward Durrell Stone house has raised a ruckus since it was constructed in 1956. When the grille first appeared at 130 E. 64th Street, more than 20 years before the Upper East Side Historic District was created, Stone had only his neighbors and architectural critics to contend with (neither group was pleased). Nowadays, in a landmark district, such an alteration to a facade would be absolutely prohibited. Yet the controversial little town house has become an unofficial landmark of its own and largely for the addition that many still consider an eyesore. This turnabout has led some of the city's big guns to take the surprising stance of defending the screen on its architectural merits. According to longtime New York City Landmarks Commissioner Thomas Pike, standards for landmark status have changed significantly over the years.