CLINTON HILL — A plan to landmark the NYPD's 88th Precinct stationhouse — built in 1898 — would be great for NYC history, but a pain for the officers working inside who may be looking to expand the cramped space, Community Board 2 members said Monday.
Advocates have been pressing for the red pressed-brick building at 298 Classon Ave., near DeKalb Avenue, to be landmarked since 2006, and the Landmarks Preservation Commission recently signed on to the plan.
But members of CB2's board said the castle-like building is only a good candidate for preservation if the NYPD moves out because landmarking would hamper any expansion plans.
“The inefficient layout of the building does not properly serve the current needs of the police department,” CB2's Executive Committee board member Lawrence Whiteside said Monday night, adding that they approved the landmarking proposal under the condition that “a new home be found for the 88th precinct.”
“The police department has been looking for a new location for at least the last 14 years but could never find a space that’s adequate," Whiteside said. “If we landmark it now then they will be even more limited in their ability to do anything with it.”
The building was originally designed by architect George Ingram who also developed “the basic form and style for numerous Brooklyn station houses and may have been responsible for designing as many as 10 buildings,” according to the Society for Clinton Hill, which asked the Landmarks Preservation Commission to landmark the building in 2006 and has been advocating for it ever since.
The stationhouse is well-preserved and boasts a five-story turret and cone-shaped roof. One local described the building as “a tiny goldfish castle in the middle of Clinton Hill.”
Sharon Barnes, who is a member of the Society for Clinton Hill, said she was pleased with the decision.
“It is a Romanesque Revival style building designed by the architect who worked for the Brooklyn Police Department around 1898 and designed many of their buildings. We are very happy to see that this structure will be reviewed by CB2."
The proposal will go before the LPC for full approval in mid-December.
Officials with the 88th Precinct did not immediately respond to requests for comment.